Tenley Bank

Senior Search Associate

Associate, Executive Search, Nonprofit and Social Impact

A Philadelphian for the past 24 years, Tenley Bank serves clients around the country, focusing on the nonprofit and education sectors. Tenley has deep experience in higher education, arts, and cultural organizations.  

As a Senior Search Associate, Tenley manages search processes, cultivates strong candidate pools and engages with clients throughout the search project. She prides herself on providing high-touch, responsive client service and transparent, empathetic candidate care to identify and recruit interesting choices for every search. Tenley has developed a strong network of curators, educators, public historians, and senior leaders in the arts and culture sector, and has served clients including academic, independent, and municipal museums, research centers, botanical gardens and arboreta, and other cultural spaces. Representative clients include: Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum (Director); Chrysler Museum of Art (Director of Public Engagement & Learning, Director of Curatorial Affairs); Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens (CEO); Contemporary Arts Center Cincinnati (Director); Getty Research Institute (Associate Director of Dissemination & External Affairs, Associate Director of Research & Knowledge Creation); Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance (President); Haystack Mountain School of Crafts (Executive Director); International African American Museum (Vice President of Learning & Engagement, Chief Development Officer); Longwood Gardens (Director, Longwood Fellows Program); Lucas Museum of Narrative Art (Deputy Director, External Affairs); Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum at University of Michigan (Director); MCA Denver (Director of Development & Membership); Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College of Art & Design (Executive Director); Telfair Museums (Director of Curatorial Affairs).

Prior to Koya, Tenley was a knowledge manager and search consultant for Korn Ferry, where she provided strategic, research-based guidance to the higher education practice across the global firm.

Before that, she served as external relations director for a theater company in Philadelphia, PA, and was the managing editor for the peer-reviewed academic journal Modernism/modernity. 

She moved to Philadelphia in 1996 to pursue a career in theater before embarking on a graduate degree in literature, researching women writers in the US South and their interrogations of race and sexuality. She also sang with the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia from 1997-2001, with whom she performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra. Tenley’s lifelong passion for creative expression and inquiry informs her work every day.

Tenley writes poetry and short fiction as time allows.


BA, English
James Madison University

Course work/exams toward PhD, Literature in English
Drew University
(was graduate student association rep for program)