New Board Vice-Chair Elected for National Association of Executive Recruiters

President of Next Level Executive Search Chosen

New Board Vice-Chair Elected for National Association of Executive Recruiters
Jacksonville, FL, July 17, 2009 --( The National Association of Executive Recruiters (NAER) has named Michael L. Garnes as the Vice-Chair of its global board of directors.

Garnes is the president of Next Level Executive Search, a St. Augustine, Fla. firm specializing in placing mid-to senior-level executives in sports-related businesses and organizations. He was previously the Treasurer of the NAER, until he was recently elected Vice-Chair to succeed Kaarla McKenzie of Tampa-based Source Executive Search|Consulting, Inc., who was elected Chair.

The 24-year-old NAER is a professional association of niche executive search firms with members in the United States and Europe. The NAER’s goal is to attract highly qualified and experienced professionals to the recruiting industry and to maintain programs, services and outreach that will enhance members' professional stature and their ability to provide quality services to their clients.

“We couldn’t be happier with our decision. Michael Garnes clearly takes his role seriously, steps up to the plate with creative solutions and is delightful to work with,” says Deborah Hall-Kayler, past NAER Chairwoman “His role as Vice-Chair is challenging as he is charged with recruiting new members into a niche network of professionals who are all passionate about their business.”

“I am very humbled that the membership selected me for the position of Vice-Chair,” Garnes says. “Working together, the board will be focusing on providing NAER members with educational services, as well as guidance on best practices and ethical standards. I also look forward to helping to plan NAER’s 2010 annual conference in Chicago.”

Joining Garnes on the board is Treasurer/Secretary Seamus McGardle of Dublin, Ireland-based SRI Executive Search, which focuses on global placements for life science, energy and non-profit organizations. Newly elected board Chair Kaarla McKenzie’s firm focuses on placing talent in advertising, marketing, media, sales promotion and public relations for brand leaders and their agencies.

Garnes began his sports-related executive search business, Next Level Executive Search, as part of a long career involved in both sports and business. He has solid corporate experience with Fortune 500 companies and private enterprises, experience in manufacturing and sales with several Johnson and Johnson companies, and collegiate sports experience as a former NCAA Enforcement Representative, and professional sports experience as an NBA and WNBA certified athlete-agent. At Holland & Knight, a nationally-ranked law firm, he helped start the collegiate sports administration and compliance practice. Garnes also served as a Major in the U.S. Air Force.

About the National Association of Executive Recruiters: Founded in 1985 by a group of leading executive search professionals, the National Association of Executive Recruiters (NAER) represents a membership dedicated to the highest level of ethical standards and practices in senior-management recruiting. Its goal is to continually enhance members' level of quality and methods through education, interaction, and professional competence. For more information, call 847-885-1453 or visit

About Next Level Executive Search: NLES is an international executive search firm placing mid- to senior-level executives in sports-related organizations and businesses. The firm has over 20 years of sports industry and recruiting experience. NLES serves mid-size to Fortune 500 companies, in sectors including: consumer products, corporate sponsors, manufacturers, retailers, and licensees, and professional sports leagues and teams. The company is a minority business and NMSDC certified. For more information, visit

Next Level Executive Search
Michael P. Dugan