Leadership Team

Teamwork. Expertise. Commitment.

“We spend our day helping architects and building design professionals”


leadership team

David McFadden
Founder/CEO and Account Executive
(212) 532-4530 Direct

David McFadden received his education in architecture at the University of Miami (Florida) and Pratt Institute. Prior to founding CFA, David worked for several well-known design practices on both a permanent and freelance basis. He started his own design firm in 1982. His work was recognized for excellence in the modern style and published in various trade magazines. David continued his design practice for several more years before closing it to focus exclusively on building the CFA brand. He brings a strong entrepreneurial spirit and team approach to the company. David has also held the elected office of mayor for the architecturally historic Village of Tuxedo Park, New York, and was a member of the Tuxedo Architectural Review Board. David founded CFA in 1984. CEO Letter.

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Elaine Gross-Krauss
Senior Associate, Account Executive
(212) 532-2655 Direct

Elaine Gross-Krauss holds a B.A. in Sociology from Ithaca College. An expert in recruiting, she focuses on interviewing and matching the industry’s top talent with its leading architecture and design firms. She also works hard to develop and maintain new and existing client relationships, to help client firms achieve their business objectives and to assist in the planning and implementation of our candidates’ career aspirations. Elaine brings a wide degree of creativity and latitude to CFA. Prior to joining the company, she gained six years of experience in the staffing industry and placed many professionals at major Fortune 500 companies. She joined CFA in 1997

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Emily Schepp
Account Executive
(212) 532-3709 Direct

Emily Schepp holds a B.S. in Mass Communications with a minor in Psychology from Towson University.  As a recruiter, Emily looks to develop strong relationships with CFA’s client architects and designers, both hiring firms and job-seeking consultants, to insure the best possible matches for all involved.  With her ability to listen to and understand candidates’ wishes and requirements, she is able to address both their short- and long-term career goals. Emily came to CFA with prior experience staffing administrative and construction personnel. She joined CFA in 2008.

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Michele Herschmann-Deegan
Director of Recruiting
(212) 532-4556 Direct

Michele Herschmann-Deegan graduated with a B.A. In English from SUNY Brockport in 1991.  She has been involved in staffing process twenty years.  As a seasoned recruiter, she has honed her craft of helping candidates and clients fulfill their strategic career and placement requirements through developing long term relationships, contributing to the community,  and utilizing technology to round out the communication and screening process.  She began her career in retail where she realized her passion for the human resources element of building a successful business.  From the retail entertainment world she specialized in the staffing of administrative office personnel with one of New York’s foremost temporary staffing agencies.  Having then spent seven years with CFA, Michele has recently served in the not-for-profit/local government sector as an office administrator.  Michele has now rejoined Consulting for Architects to bring her breadth of knowledge to the exciting upswing in Architectural and Engineering markets of New York and Los Angeles. She originally joined CFA in 1997.

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Joanna Schnitzer
Talent Aquisition
(212) 532-4376 Direct

Joanna Schnitzer graduated with a B.S. in Sociology from SUNY Old Westbury in 2001.  Joanna has been involved in the staffing industry since 2002. Prior to that, she was in the non-for profit sector as a registrar in an administrative capacity. As a Talent Coordinator in support of the account executives, she actively recruits the industry’s most highly qualified architects, interior designers and building design professionals. She is an expert in social media sourcing and traditional methods of recruiting both passive and active job seekers.  She originally joined CFA in 2002.

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Polina Aleshina
Staffing & Recruiting Support
(212) 532-4316 Direct

Polina Aleshina is working towards her Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry from Brooklyn College.  As Staffing and Recruiting support for CFA, Polina assists the Account Executives and Senior Recruiters with various tasks and projects, while also helping our candidates move forward with their career goals.  In addition to recruiting support, Polina also assists accounting with billing and invoicing.  As a well-rounded person, Polina brings a lot to the table.  Prior to CFA, Polina worked in the medical field doing billing. She joined CFA in 2016.

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Emily Pearlstein
Social Media Marketing and Sales
(212)532-4361 Direct

Emily Pearlstein graduated with a Liberal Arts degree from the University of Arizona, concentrating in Social Behavior and Human Understanding. Prior to joining CFA. Emily worked at Shutterstock on the accounts payable team.  She also was a summer intern at a commercial real estate firm prior to entering the staffing and recruiting profession at Consulting For Architects, Inc. a top-level recruiting firm focused on optimally placing clients in ideal job roles. Emily has strong Social Media Marketing and Sales experience, which she applies in at CFA. She maintains a strong passion for Real Estate, and is soon going to be a licensed realtor in the city of New York. When she’s not assisting in placing top candidates, Emily enjoys researching fashion trends and light reading. She joined CFA in 2016.

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Board of Advisers

Charles P. Alexander, RA, AIA
Charles holds a Bachelor of Architecture and a Master of Architecture from Cornell University. He has been on the faculty at Boston Architectural Center, Cornell University, and Harvard University.  Chaz worked at HLW International as the Director LA Office.  He has held various design, management, operations, principal and directorship positions at Harley Ellis Devereaux, Friedmutter Group, NBBJ, Perkins and Will, Kapell and Kostow Architects, PC, and Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, PC.  In addition to his expertise as an architect, he brings his profound human resources experience and career development skills to the Board. 

Lisa Randall Gallo, Interior Designer
Lisa graduated from New York School of Interior Design, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.), Interior Design.  Lisa has over 16 years experience in the AEC staffing arena, and a professional career in marketing/business development with several national architectural firms.  Lisa is not only well versed in the architectural design and building process, but also the staffing and function of the architectural design studio.  She brings these years of focused experience to the Board.



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