Insight Blog

Helbling Recognizes Key Employees

Helbling Recognizes Key Employees

Here at Helbling, we are proud and honored to represent the clientele that we have, from Ivy-League universities and world-renowned healthcare institutions to prominent real estate developers and international construction firms. For a small company of 25 people, we have had the opportunity to work with great clients in our 26 years, performing searches for professionals who have impacted their organizations in so many positive ways.

There’s no doubt that the primary reason for our success is our team of genuinely hard-working people who are committed and dedicated to what we do. Tom Helbling does a great job of consistently expressing his appreciation for everyone’s efforts, and this past week, he recognized a few members of our team for their commendable achievements.   

Jim Lord has been named Executive Director, Northeast. Jim has worked tirelessly to develop the Northeast Region to what it is today, our second largest region, right behind New York City. Jim and his core team, Senior Managing Consultants Ryan Pugh and Joe Wargo, represent various types of organizations from colleges, universities, and independent schools to construction firms and real estate developers. 

Jim says, “I could not have achieved what I have without of the support of a strong leadership and administrative team here at Helbling, and most importantly, the support of a truly driven and professional team. Special thanks are owed to Joe and Ryan, as well as our newest member of the team, Rob Dible.”

Tom Dunn has been named Managing Director, Mid-Atlantic. Tom and his team began growing the region in 2016, and clientele has grown significantly to include construction firms, corporations, health systems, and colleges and universities. Tom’s region spans Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia, Delaware, and Central and Eastern Pennsylvania. He says, “Within our team in the Mid-Atlantic, our mission is simple – to help change organizations and careers for the better.”  

Marc Datz, a 20-year veteran of the firm, was named Regional Manager, Midwest. In this role, he will lead our growth in the Midwestern region of the U.S. from Western Pennsylvania to Michigan and to Missouri. He is already expanding our presence in the region, securing multiple professionals for Washington University, St. Louis, and most recently, the Chief Facilities Officer of Oberlin College. Marc says, "Our firm has such a dedicated and talented group of professionals. It is energizing to be part of the collaborative and focused culture that we have developed over many years and to serve the best interests of clients and candidates.”

Lee Grandovic has been named Regional Manager, New York City. Lee is the only team member who works remotely, and he resides in Brooklyn Heights with his wife. Since relocating to New York City in 2015, he has found living in the city to be a great experience, personally and professionally. His local presence allows for frequent meetings pertaining to new client development, and with current clients and candidates as needed, which is extremely beneficial and conducive to maintaining the momentum on searches. Further, Lee has continued to expand Helbling’s presence in the city, specifically in the institutional and non-profit sectors. He says, “Living locally in the metro area has afforded me the opportunity to become more visible and engrained in the fabric of the industry and region.” 

Additional team members we’d like to recognize for their dedication are:

Senior Managing Consultant Rick Nawoczynski – A member of Helbling’s Southeast team, he works closely with Wes Miller, Managing Director of the region. Next month, Rick will celebrate 20 years with us! Throughout that time, Rick has secured professionals across 29 states. Due to the diverse searches conducted, many in the western part of the U.S., he has dealt with numerous candidate relocations. Many of Rick’s placements have had tenure of more than 10 years with our clients, with some approaching 19 years. Some of his more notable placements are:

  • Project Executive with an international construction firm who is now a Vice President, Account Manager. She was also named 40 under 40 by the San Francisco Business Journal in the last few years.
  • Executive Vice President of Fire Protection with a mechanical contractor who is now a shareholder and a member of the firm’s 8-member executive committee.

Miller says, “There is no one who is more compassionate, loyal, unselfish, and committed as Rick. I am very happy that he’s part of Helbling, but selfishly part of the Southeast team.”

Senior Managing Consultant Ryan Pugh – Fondly called “Bulldog” internally, Ryan is diligent and persistent in his searches. With those traits, he has developed strong relationships with many clients, leading to repeat business. Recently, one of our long-term clients, a prominent university, said, “We want Ryan to do what he did for us on the Site Safety Director search, and that is why we retained you again. He got us someone who fits in very well from a leadership and cultural standpoint.”

Ryan is our go-to-recruiter when we want to train and develop our new hires, especially when it comes to researching and identifying candidates. Many of our team members credit Ryan for helping them to develop into strong recruiters. One of the things he tells new team members is, “you have to be on the phone.” In our business, that is so true. Ryan says, “Email and technology certainly have their place, but to truly develop rapport with people, you have to talk to them.” He, Rick, and Joe should know because they are consistently the top recruiters for phone time. 

And finally, we want to acknowledge Senior Managing Consultant Matt Lesher. Securing nearly 200 professionals for our clients, Matt is one of our recruiters who has experience conducting searches for construction operations talent to executives for major real estate developers. Working in the New York City region for nearly all of his career, he is well-networked and has long-term relationships in the region with both candidates and clients. 

You could say that Matt is our recruiter who has single-handedly done the most repeat assignments with some of our major clients. He has secured more than 20 professionals for a New York City high-end residential builder, well over 40 for an international construction firm, and more than 15 for one of the largest PPP infrastructure projects ever done in the state of Florida. 


As we continue to grow our clientele and geographic regions, we are sure there will be many more internal changes to make. In the meantime, we want to express our appreciation for all of our employees. What a great team we have!