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Global Ministry Hires Leader from South Africa for International Role





70 Staff


Portland, Oregon



"what i found most valuable was the vanderbloemen Consultant’s “expertise [and] level of preparation.”

Meredith Ramey, Director of Human Resources at Luis Palau Association,

Dr. Desmond Henry, Director of Global Network of Evangelists, Luis Palau Association

Executive Summary


A global ministry organization that has shared the gospel worldwide for over 60 years, reached over a billion people, and bears the name of its founder, a famous and beloved evangelist, was searching to hire a Director of the Global Network of Evangelists. The Luis Palau Association had formed relationships with thousands of evangelists around the world over six decades of ministry, and eventually decided to create an official Global Network. The Network needed an official director. The Palau Association hired our team at Vanderbloemen to consult them on what the new role might entail, and use our resources to cast a wide net for potential hires. That wide net found Dr. Desmond Henry from Johannesburg, South Africa, and a few months later, the Oregon-based Luis Palau Association hired him to be their first Director of the Global Network of Evangelists.


Luis Palau Speaking Engagement




Luis Palau Association, based in Beaverton, Oregon, is a global evangelical mission that works with thousands of churches around the world to “Proclaim the Good News, unite the Church, and impact cities worldwide.” The Association was incorporated in 1978 by Luis Palau, the famous evangelist affectionately known as the “Billy Graham of Latin America.” Over the last four decades, Luis Palau Association has developed an extensive network of evangelists around the globe. The plan in the next several years is to accelerate evangelism worldwide and build networks of evangelists in 150+ countries. To accomplish this goal, Palau Association needed to hire a Director of the Global Network of Evangelists.




This was the Palau Association’s first attempt at creating a director position for the Network of Evangelists. It wasn’t easy for the Luis Palau search team to predict the full scope of what the new role would entail. The Director needed to have cross-cultural experience, confidence in public speaking, and the ability to work well with others, but also needed to have the competence and discernment to independently determine what the Director of the Global Network’s role required. The new director would need to have particular experience that could prepare him or her to fulfill the requirements of the comprehensive and open-ended job description. Luis Palau Association, aware of these unique requirements and of their search limitations, looked for the help of an executive search firm.


Luis Palau and Kevin Palau (CEO) at Palau Association knew the pedigree of the search consultants at Vanderbloemen and even had previous experience working with Jay Mitchell, Senior Executive Search Consultant, here at Vanderbloemen. Through this relationship, the Luis Palau Association chose to hire us to help them with their search for a director.


Luis Palau Festival



Before traveling to Beaverton, our Consultant was able to speak on the phone with the search team at Luis Palau Association. This initial call was an opportunity for our Vanderbloemen team to ask preliminary questions which enabled us to understand their basic requirements for the new hire. Our Consultant then traveled to their headquarters in Oregon and sat down with the Palau team to establish the plan for the search. While there, the Consultant discerned the “DNA” of the organization by meeting executives, speaking with employees, and documenting the mission of Luis Palau’s Network of Evangelists. At Vanderbloemen, we know that the right fit for a position is someone who can match the “DNA” of the organization.


Luis Palau City Gospel Movements


In their time together, our Consultant was able to help them determine the specific attributes they needed and wanted in the new hire. One method he used was to have the team make three lists; must-haves, nice-to-haves, and can’t-haves. Jay, our Consultant, compared the questioning approach in these meetings to the developing process of a Polaroid picture. As time in the meetings passed, and Jay asked deeper and deeper questions, the picture of the ideal candidate for the position became clearer and clearer.


Once Jay was confident he understood the “DNA” of Luis Palau Association, he returned to Vanderbloemen to begin the search process. We began an international search for the organization’s next Director of the Global Network of Evangelists. At this stage, we advertised the Luis Palau position through every outlet we have.


One of our Vanderbloemen Differences is that we will bring you candidates you won’t find on your own. We were able to bring Luis Palau Association candidates they wouldn’t find on their own through leaving no rock unturned as we searched for the very best candidates for the role. That includes many outlets including the Vanderbloemen newsletter, social media channels, strategic partner network, job boards, LinkedIn recruiting, and even the Luis Palau newsletter. Our Research Team began reaching out to our own database of 86,000+ candidates as well as cold sourcing candidates who didn’t know about the position.


Within a couple of months, we narrowed the pool of applicants through screening and interviewing from 97 viable candidates to eleven. Jay thoroughly interviewed all eleven candidates and believed that seven of the eleven were the very best candidates for Luis Palau Association. After interviewing and getting to know the seven candidates, the team at Luis Palau felt confident about the fit of Dr. Desmond Henry of Johannesburg, South Africa. Dr. Henry was invited to visit Portland after several video calls, and was hired in October 2019. Henry is now serving as the Director of the Global Network of Evangelists at Luis Palau Association.




When partnering with Vanderboemen, an organization is assigned a team that includes an Executive Search Consultant, a Research Specialist, and a Client Relations Manager who walk alongside the organization throughout the entire search process. The Vanderbloemen Senior Executive Search Consultant who worked on this search has over ten years of ministry experience as an executive pastor for two different churches, and decades of experience working in Christian organizations. All of our team members are full-time employees, solely dedicated to helping our clients find their key staff. All of our Executive Search Consultants have executive leadership experience at Christian organizations.

Luis Palau in Times Square

The benefit of hiring Vanderbloemen is that we have the search capabilities to find the ideal fit for your organization, whether the right person is already working for you or is living in South Africa. We’re able to provide a global reach and a full staff approach for organizations who otherwise would be limited to their local networks and would need to sacrifice other responsibilities to invest in a quality search. We are able to bring churches and organizations executive position candidates they could not find on their own. Vanderbloemen also has the capability to perform extensive background and reference checks on candidates.


Meredith Ramey, Director of Human Resources at Luis Palau Association, said that what she found most valuable was our Consultant’s “expertise [and] level of preparation,” and the “expertise” of Vanderbloemen’s final candidates. Ramey said that it was “Really clear [Jay] has done this before... When he visited he knew exactly the information to get, and asked all the right questions. He was really good at his job. It was easy to feel confident in his ability.”


Dr. Desmond HenryResult


Dr. Desmond Henry has been working as the Director of the Global Network of Evangelists at Luis Palau Association since October 2019. Ramey wanted our Vanderbloemen team to know that, “We loved our experience with you! Everyone is super friendly and professional. We felt all of Vanderbleomen was sincerely and honestly dedicated to us!”  

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Topics: Nonprofit