Max is the founder and CEO of PeopleConnect, bringing remarkable energy, a rare blend of experience, a sense of creativity, and a never-give-up tenaciousness that has made it possible for many startups and established companies to add key talent to their teams. A lifelong entrepreneur, and a consummate networker and business strategist, Max understands the minds and passions of startups and companies focused on growth.
Max has always been an expert in finding talent; he was the youngest talent scout in the history of the NBA, serving as Chief Scout for the Phoenix Suns. He owned and operated a company that produced sports camps for children, and baseball and basketball fantasy camps for adults, where he partnered with some of the biggest names in sports, including Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Pat Riley, Magic Johnson, John Wooden and Billy Casper.
Max founded PeopleConnect Staffing in 1998, where he currently focuses on business development and client relations. He is an active member of several angel investment groups, and his passion for finding talent extends to introducing PeopleConnect clients to the professional resources they need to bring their company to the next level.
Leslie Ayres, Senior Executive Recruiter
Leslie joined PeopleConnect in 2003, bringing years of experience in contingency recruiting for positions at all levels, as well as years in operational management of a premier Bay Area staffing and temporary service, and a stint as owner of a specialized staffing service during the dotcom boom. She has also worked in the branding and advertising fields, as well as in executive education.
A Certified Employment Specialist with more than 25 years of experience, Leslie has a direct and human approach to recruiting. Focusing on candidate selection, and with a deep understanding of the priorities and dynamics of growing businesses, she views potential candidates through her clients’ eyes to ensure that finalists are the best possible fit for the company’s objectives and culture.
Leslie places C-level executives and senior management in marketing, finance, product management, R&D and other specialized disciplines, as well as administrative and financial staff. She has facilitated key hires for software giants, biotech pioneers, medical firms, advertising agencies, not-for-profits, and complex multinational corporations. Currently, her passion is finding talent for innovative Web 2.0 and 3.0 startups and cutting edge technology teams.
Leslie also maintains a private practice doing career coaching, resume consulting, and presenting seminars in using job changes to further life goals to young people, career changers, business and technical groups. She fills the rest of her time with travel to Thailand, studying the Thai language, and blogging and writing books about the ins and outs of looking for a job.
Karen Gore, VP Northwest and Recruiter
Karen’s career in human resources and recruiting began more than 20 years ago as a strategic partner with Fortune 500 and Global 100 companies, where she was tasked with recruiting top talent. She joined PeopleConnect in 2005, and her aim is to create a satisfying experience for both clients and candidates, working closely with both sides to understand the culture and expectations of the client, and to learn the skills and desires of the candidate. Karen has been certified as a Professional in Human Resources since 1990, and holds a B.S. in Business.
Her industry experience spans high tech, manufacturing, education, petroleum, wood and beverage industries, and she has filled jobs such as SVP of Operations, Controller, VP Sales and Marketing, VP Operations, and positions in administration, sales, marketing, R&D and engineering. In the past, she has also done executive coaching, organizational development and succession planning.
When not hunting for quality candidates, Karen gardens, reads and soaks up information about scientific advances in technology, energy and space.
Vivi Fenwick, Senior Recruiter
Vivi joined PeopleConnect in 2006 and has more than 17 years of experience in human resources and recruiting, having worked at a wide variety of organizations providing both tactical and strategic human resources support and solutions for corporations and subsidiaries in the pharmaceutical, high-tech hardware and software, and agricultural produce industries.
Her knowledge spans recruiting, staffing processes and management, employee relations, employee retention, succession planning, organizational development and training. Vivi’s recruiting philosophy is to focus on organizational cultural fit, department fit, as well as technical fit.
Vivi received her BA in Business Administration, with a concentration in Human Resources, from San Jose State University. Outside of her work with us, Vivi maintains a consulting practice in human resources, and manages a very busy family as well.
Judy Wachs, Senior Recruiter
Judy has been in the search industry for 20 years. She was President and CEO of the first search firm specializing in the mobile communications industry. She brings a blend of industry know how and common sense to sourcing and recruiting qualified candidates.
Her expertise ranges from a keen understanding of the needs of a particular company to the culture of that company. She is committed to finding and placing those candidates who will help to define the company’s ethos. Her background and certification in counseling and therapy aid her in evaluating and presenting the candidate who will best reflect the needs of the company. She prides herself on her relations with clients and always makes their needs and requirements her top priority.
Judy received a BA from the University of Miami and an MA in Counseling from San Francisco State University. She has lived in California and New York and has traveled extensively throughout the world. She brings to PeopleConnect years of experience in recruiting, interviewing and interacting with both employees and employers.
Sarah Schloenvogt, Senior Recruiter
Sarah has over 16 years of recruiting, staffing development and human resources management experience in the San Francisco Bay Area High Technology sector. Beginning her career in contingency recruiting in 1997, Sarah specialized in technical accounting professionals for Fortune 100 Silicon Valley firms. She then moved toward placement of key executives in Pre-IPO companies, including CFOs, CTOs, and Investor Relations Personnel. Sarah launched a recruitment firm in 2001 specializing in User Interface Engineers, SOA Architects, Software Developers, and Product Managers as well as Sales Executives for the CRM Industry. With a strong background with both Hardware and Software, she has assisted notable early stage and rapidly expanding technology companies achieve sustained growth and success.
Her focus on strategic recruitment for her clients has helped companies leverage their existing staff’s experience by recruiting key talent to compliment the present team, and to solve the missing pieces of the technology puzzle. With 16+ years of Staffing management experience, Sarah is able to quickly assimilate to various Business Models, and to act as a strategic business partner and catalyst to drive change and growth in Start-up companies.
Sarah is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and is a member of the Society of Human Resources. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and has two children.
Tom Schenck, Contract and Executive Recruiter
Tom has over 12 years of seasoned technical recruiting and executive search experience. Prior to recruiting, he had an extensive business and international marketing career in the computer software and high technology sectors in the US, Europe, India and China for both Fortune 500 and startup enterprises.
Tom applies his seasoned business and communication skills in combination with diverse experience with products, technologies and organizations to become a highly effective technical and executive recruiter. He has successfully recruited key executives, Internet technology talent, software engineers, product managers, and top marketing and sales professionals for numerous technology startups and rapidly growing global enterprises. Tom also has a strong background in HPC advanced computing, scientific applications, energy and bio-medical technologies, having previously served as a senior recruiting manager for Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Tom received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. To complement his work in recruiting, he enjoys painting, guitar and fine conversation. Tom is based in San Francisco.