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Exit Interview: Colleen Cunningham

In 2003, career finance executive Colleen Cunningham was restless in her role as CFO with Havas Advertising.  She had established North American operations for the international advertising conglomerate following a $2 billion U.S. acquisition and, after two years with the firm, she craved a new challenge.

When Phil Livingston, then-president and CEO of Financial Executives International, announced his resignation in a message to members, Cunningham received the e-mail but wasn’t immediately interested in the position.  Three months later, on a whim, she queried the search firm.  The field was down to four finalists but the recruiter threw Cunningham into the mix.

“Honestly, [the recruiter] indicated that she didn’t have any diversity on the slate,” explained Cunningham. “She basically managed my expectations.  The next thing I knew, I was getting an offer.”