Team members take on expanded roles

Laura Robinson and Catherine Capolupo Announced as Principal Consultants at NES

Reflecting the continued growth, development, and success of NES, Mary Worland Napier is pleased to announce that valued team members Laura Robinson and Catherine Capolupo will now serve as principal consultants at the higher education enrollment search firm.

According to Mary Napier, NES founder and principal consultant, “The collective energy and talents of Laura and Catherine are both complementary and exciting. Their leadership within the team, and frankly, within the enrollment profession instills confidence with candidates. At the same time, in our work with search committees and institutional leadership, their instincts and counsel are valued. For those reasons, and because of their visionary view of higher education and best practices in search work, I am excited to partner with them as NES continues to successfully serve the field.”

Robinson has 25 years of experience in higher education and the K-12 environment. Since joining NES eight years ago, she has completed nearly 125 searches. Prior to joining the team in 2019, Capolupo spent 20 years in the field of Enrollment Management, including serving as a vice president of enrollment at two institutions. In her four years of search work, she has completed 30 searches.

“I am honored and privileged to be part of a collaborative team that has impacted the lives of thousands of students through successful placements of incredibly talented and highly qualified enrollment professionals,” shares Robinson.

Capolupo adds, “It’s a joy to be part of an organization that works to develop a synergistic partnership with each of our institutional clients, and allows our team to work closely with our colleagues in higher education at multiple points across their rich and impactful careers.”

Napier, Robinson, and Capolupo will continue to work alongside an exemplary team of higher education professionals who use their personal experiences and direct expertise to serve colleges and universities nationally. All have careers with roots in higher education and specifically in enrollment; each has a unique perspective but endorses a unified goal of getting to know institutions, then tapping talented leaders who will move each place forward. Current members of the NES team include Robin Stamm Reynders, Thom Golden, Suzi Nam, and Ann Salina-Tucker.

About NES

Embarking on our 10th year, NES, a higher education search firm specializing in enrollment management and related searches, provides a personal, connected approach to the search for talented enrollment leaders. The team’s attention to building and maintaining personal connections in the higher education space lends itself to a deep network of individual and institutional partnerships. The company has completed more than 200 searches since 2014. The work of NES is truly national, focused on excellence, and relies on a synergistic approach. See a list of current searches in progress.

Napier Executive Search is now NES

“We’re ready for our name and identity to support who we’ve become and take us to where we’re going next.” Mary Napier, founder and principal consultant.

NES Searches, a higher education enrollment management search firm, announces a rebrand to NES as the firm shifts its focus from a primary persona to a collective group.

“When the firm was founded in 2014, our business model was anchored in my experience and relationships in the enrollment management space,” shares Napier.

“Over the past eight years, the team of enrollment consultants who have joined NES have lent their professional expertise, network of contacts, and exceptional talents for identifying strong leaders who match with our partner institutions.

Today, the sum of this organization is far greater than the individual leadership. NES is a team of skilled search consultants who are persistent, thorough, curious, and dedicated to serving higher education in the field of enrollment management and beyond.”

Anticipating future growth

The time is right to explore this next step with an expanded team in place and steady growth on the horizon. “The rebrand aligns our identity with the national range of our work, our commitment to excellence and the synergy of our team members,” says Napier.

The NES logo is enhanced with the addition of a bright goldenrod color, alongside the familiar blue and green, and the interconnected pieces of the arrow, symbolizing the synergy of relationships and connections that create forward movement and progress.

Current NES team members include Mary Napier, Laura Robinson, Catherine Capolupo, Robin Stamm Reynders, Thom Golden, and Suzi Nam.  All have careers with roots in higher education and specifically in enrollment; each has a unique perspective but endorses a unified goal of getting to know institutions, then tapping talented leaders who will move each place forward.

In addition to growing the NES team to six search consultants, the company has established alliances with Westfall Executive Advisors (executive coaching) and Blue Icon Advisors (custom training to financial aid and enrollment management practitioners). This intentional growth represents the company’s commitment to supporting emerging management leaders and higher education at large.

Mary Napier will remain principal consultant, and the NES team will continue to serve colleges and universities across the U.S.

About NES

NES provides a personal, connected approach to the enrollment search process. The team’s attention to building and maintaining personal connections in the higher education space lends itself to a deep network of individual and institutional partnerships. The company has completed more than 175 searches since 2014. See a list of current searches in progress.

Company Timeline 

2014 NES Searches was founded.
Mary Napier and Robin Reynders serve as first search consultants.
2015 Laura Robinson, Nancy Benedict and Lisa Bunders joins the organization.
(Benedict retired in 2019; Bunders left in 2016.)
2018 NES Searches completes 100th enrollment management search.
2019 Catherine Capolupo joins the team.
2020 Thom Golden joins the team.
2022 Suzi Nam joins the team.
NES Searches becomes NES
2023 Ann Salina-Tucker joins the team.

Announcing an alliance with Westfall Executive Advisors

Finding, and placing, the right enrollment management leader within a university or college is imperative for success. But equally important, is the coaching and development support that aligns the new leader and institution during the onboarding phase and beyond. “The changing landscape of higher education requires thoughtful and strategic effort that connects new leaders to the culture as well as to the expectations and goals of colleges and universities in order to elevate—and accelerate—outcomes,” explains Mary Worland Napier, Principal, Napier Executive Search (NES).

This intentional support for newly-placed enrollment management professionals is the focus of a new partnership between Westfall Executive Advisors and NES. The partnership will include an individualized executive coaching package for each chief enrollment officer named by NES clients. NES and WestfallExec each bring decades of experience working with higher education professionals and leadership teams among diverse colleges and universities. Their combined services aim to strengthen the success of enrollment professionals as well as the institutions they serve.

“We are excited to work with Napier Executive Search and to support the work of enrollment leaders,” says Sarah B. Westfall, Principal at Westfall Executive Advisors. “The challenges ahead of these leaders are daunting and anticipating their need for productive transitions and ongoing support is a mark of distinction for NES. We look forward to working with talented enrollment colleagues as they move their institutions forward.”

“As a search firm committed to the field of enrollment management and the institutions we serve, it is a natural connection to partner with Sarah Westfall and Westfall Executive Advisors to provide selected candidates with another tool for success,” says Napier. “We anticipate that incumbent chief enrollment officers will benefit from the expertise of a personal coach who is both experienced as a cabinet partner and is intent on supporting their success.”

Westfall Executive Advisors are certified by the International Coaching Federation and have deep experience in senior and executive-level institutional leadership. Their work is rooted in the values of competence, curiosity, creativity, and a sense of humor.

Napier Executive Search is a national search firm focused on identifying enrollment leaders for post-secondary institutions who offer insight, inspiration, and leadership to each organization’s culture and needs. Persistent and patient in understanding each role and university or college, NES works to find the best match for institutional and candidate success.

To learn more about this new partnership, contact Mary Worland Napier, Principal, Napier Executive Search at

A Partnership with Blue Icon Advisors

Napier Executive Search has embarked on a partnership with Blue Icon Advisors. Blue Icon Advisors is the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators’ consulting service for colleges, universities, and career schools. As trusted advisors to financial aid professionals, Blue Icon provides consulting, operational reviews, leadership coaching, and custom training to financial aid and enrollment management practitioners. The field of financial aid for postsecondary education requires continuous and cumulative understanding of regulations, institutional compliance with those regulations, and effective customer service for students and families. Blue Icon offers clarity and practical advice to their clients.

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