Phone Number: (713) 355-1900

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About Gaines International

Gaines International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Allen Austin, is a globally positioned executive search and recruiting firm serving the architecture, interior design, engineering, construction and real estate development industries. With almost four decades of experience in specialized professional executive search and recruiting, we serve as both a partner and trusted advisor to our North American and international clientele. The mission of our team of consultants and researchers is to connect your company with individuals who possess the leadership qualities, expertise and talent to enhance your organization and bottom line.

What We Offer

Customized Solutions

Every search that Gaines International performs is unique.

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For Hiring Managers

We follow a proven recruitment process that is tailored to suit our client’s unique needs and requirements.

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For Potential Candidates

We take great pride in connecting elite candidates with our distinguished clients.

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Our Clients

What Our Clients Say

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Gaines’ recruiters have identified many exceptional employment candidates and have pre- selected those candidates for our consideration who have always been aligned with our vision and values.

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Cannon Design, CEO

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Cooper Carry has enjoyed great results from the recruiting services of Gaines International for 30 years. That we have used their services for three decades attests to our satisfaction with the quality of the process, interactions, and results.

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Cooper Carry, President and CEO

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Our expectations are high in the relationships we forge… Gaines not only delivered on our expectations but exceeded them.

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David Evans and Associates, Director of Recruiting

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I found Gaines to be responsive to our needs and ultimately delivered what was committed.

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DFS Galleria, President Store Operations

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I have and will continue to recommend Gaines to other organizations seeking to fill top level positions.

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Fuss & O’Neill, President and CEO

Consultant Spotlight

Rob Andrews

Chairman & CEO

Based in Houston, Rob Andrews is Chief Executive Officer & Chairman of Gaines International│Allen Austin. Rob leads Allen Austin’s global CEO, Consumer Packaged Goods & Durables Practice, and is also a member of the firm’s Leadership Advisory, Private Equity, Industrial and Marketing Officer practices. Building on his earlier career experience as an operating president with major convenience store and supermarket chains, Rob conducts searches for…

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Donna Gaines

Founder & Managing Partner

Since 1981, Donna Gaines has assisted clients in finding key professionals with leadership talent to meet the challenges of modern business. With decades of experience in executive search and candidate placement in the architecture, design, engineering and construction industries, Donna brings a unique sensibility to recruitment and understands the impact of architecture and design on cultures and societies. Donna relocated the Gaines headquarters from Atlanta…

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Darcie Murray

Managing Partner, Executive Search

Darcie’s responsibilities include client service, partner-level talent acquisition, and professional development. Darcie was drawn to Allen Austin because of its purpose and commitment to the highest levels of relationship management and client experience. Darcie’s understanding of the firm’s Foresight™ process, facilitating matches that work and last, make her an integral part of expanding the firm’s global footprint, while building on the firm’s values and culture…

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Grant possesses over twenty-seven years of executive search experience, twenty of which have been with Gaines International focusing on partnering with client companies in the architectural, construction, interior design, engineering and real estate industries. Prior to Gaines International, Grant was a Vice President with W.L. Handler & Associates, a generalist retained search firm specializing in mid to senior level searches within the Fortune 500 markets….

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He leads searches for the firm’s AEC clients domestically and internationally, as well as oversees business development and marketing for the firm’s Atlanta offices. Prior to joining Gaines International, Craft spent almost two decades as the Vice President of Human Resources and Administration for tvsdesign, inc., a premier A&E design firm with offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Dubai and Shanghai. He has significant experience in a…

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He began his search career in 1996, in research and research management. He managed research teams at two London-based executive search firms in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Over the last ten years, Stephen has delivered searches across multiple sectors, functions, and geographies. He has executed searches on behalf of some of the world’s biggest companies, including Disney, Sony, Microsoft, IBM, and PWC. He…

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Kelly specializes in industrial, oil and gas, power, midstream, and consumer products, and has a unique talent for conducting search engagements across a broad range of industries. Kelly feels building relationships is her biggest asset. Prior to Allen Austin, she worked for one of the largest firms in Houston and successfully completed a large engagement with a rapidly growing midstream company resulting in fifty executive…

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Taija Pupillo

Principal

Taija Pupillo has over 12 years of experience as a Leader and Advisor in Career Planning and Placement and she enjoys all facets of candidate development and strategic talent matching. At Gaines, Taija focuses on recruiting and candidate development targeting mid- to senior level strategic hires within Architecture, Interiors, Engineering, and Construction and Real Estate Development firms. She partners closely with the internal research team…

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Allen Suvorov

Principal

Allen Suvorov has over 12 years of executive search experience. Since joining the firm in 2016, he has been instrumental in sourcing candidates for the urgent and highly demanding search assignments in the AEC space and several other sectors. Among most recent engagements were: – Technical Architectural Director with a Top-10 global luxury hospitality design firm; – Regional Practice Leader for an international construction forensics…

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Rob Walker

Principal

Based in Houston, Rob brings fifteen years of senior level executive search experience to Gaines International. Rob’s specialties include architecture, design, engineering and construction, energy, industrial and healthcare. and is well known for identifying key, high-caliber performers across a myriad of functions specializing in Senior Staff level to the C-suite. Rob began his career in outside sales/business development before his introduction to search. It is…

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Karina Brisack

Administrator

Based in Houston, Karina Brisack is an Administrator at Allen Austin & Gaines International. She provides high-level administrative support to the Managing Partner and Partners of Gaines International as well as to Allen Austin’s Operations Manager, working closely with them to ensure a smooth flow of business between all stakeholders. Karina is skilled at managing internal and external communications and acts as a liaison between…

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News & Insights

It’s lonely at the top and one of the smartest moves any business owner, principal or entrepreneur can make is to engage a Business Advisory Board (“BAB”).  The success or accountability of your firm rests on the shoulders of the owner(s).  Structuring your BAB, which is less formal than a Board of Directors, with the right mix of members can be paramount to a strong…”

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There is no denying that technology has had a tremendous impact on our everyday lives. Overall, it has made us more efficient and productive – adding measurable and tangible value to our personal and work environments. However, there is also a downside. Technology can be impersonal, especially in regard to the nature and depth of human interaction in the workplace: the allure of technology has…”

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The seller-doer model is considered the preferred form of cultivating business within the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction industries (AEC). Seller-doers are individuals who not only win projects but are also technical professionals who can deliver the work. A successful seller-doer requires more than technical expertise. It requires excellent soft skills such as building deliberate relationships or simply knowing the right questions to ask potential clients. According…”

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We are pleased to have been selected as a trusted partner in the search for a Project Manager of Chastain-Skillman. Chastain-Skillman is a 69-year old consulting firm in Lakeland, Florida that specializes in civil engineering, water management, surveying, and overall project planning. They are problem solvers who thrive on finding innovative solutions to the engineering challenges facing cities, municipalities, businesses and communities. The search will be conducted…”

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(Atlanta, GA) – Tuesday, January 7, 2020 – Gaines International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Allen Austin, a Top 40 global management consulting firm, is pleased to announce Earle Craft has joined the firm’s Atlanta office as Partner. “Earle brings more than 35 years of experience in Human Resources, Legal and Leadership Advisory expertise to his role as partner with the firm,” said Donna Gaines, Managing Partner…”

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Allen Austin recently completed a retained search engagement for the Texas Automobile Dealers Association and Darren Whitehurst was selected to serve as the Association’s next President. Darren is joining TADA after spending fifteen years at the Texas Medical Association. Darren’s career has been dedicated to leadership roles where, time and time again, he has led organizations to new heights. Prior to joining TADA, Darren enjoyed…”

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We are pleased to have been selected as a trusted partner in the search for a Market Sector Leader – Aviation at Leo A Daly! About Leo A Daly Located in Midtown, our Atlanta office is flush with ambitious architects and engineers inspired to make a difference. A diverse range of international talent flocks to our Atlanta office—from across the USA, Canada, Congo, Poland, Taiwan, Turkey, Colombia and…”

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