Re-Imagining the Future of Work with Sally Thornton
We are a team of creative problem solvers who believe that respect, authenticity, entrepreneurship and fun are core to human-centered companies. Our reputation is based on the relationships we’ve nurtured and the innovative risks we’ve taken.
We began in 2011, solving for the fluid future of work with interim experts.
Working moms loved it. Then came the working dads, millennials without kids, and baby boomers, who all wanted new ways of working.
After expanding into executive search because we “always got the skills + the culture complement right,” we came to a realization: the “special sauce” critical to thriving teams is actually based on the social science happening within them.
Now we’re working on solving the whole system of work by uncovering the science behind how individuals and teams thrive.
I’m often asked. ‘Why did you name the company Forshay?
The inspiration for becoming an entrepreneur was my brother, Will Forshay. When Will was 37, he was killed in a plane accident. At the time of his death, I was eight months pregnant with my first child. I had been working the long hours Silicon Valley demands, commuting into the office every day and staying far too late. When I heard about Will, I flew to the crash site. That day, my mom told me that as much as I loved my work (and I do love my work), I couldn’t know how much time I would get with my son. She encouraged me to find a new way to blend work and family so I would have no regrets about whatever time I was given with my boy.
So Forshay stands for all people who love their work—and who strive to do their best work while living full lives with no regrets.
Sally Thornton, Forshay Founder
An instigator on how to thrive in the future of work, Sally founded Forshay in 2011 to connect the Bay Area’s most innovative companies with exceptional talent. Sally is a frequent keynote speaker on the future of work, including the science of work/life blend and applying design thinking to make work better. She also loves to share her expertise on women in leadership, harnessing the value of a multi-generational workforce, and talent recruitment and engagement strategies. When she’s not full throttle at work, you’ll find her playing tennis or digging into a pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream.
As part of Forshay’s founding team and current Managing Partner, Andrea is involved in every aspect of running Forshay. Drawing on her past experience as an HR executive and recruiting leader, Andrea is equipped with the critical business acumen, deep analytical know-how, and the ability to effectively identify the right talent for clients’ needs. With talent networks in the San Francisco, New York and Boston markets, she is the first person companies call when they have an important position or project to fill. Andrea has a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell, and in her downtime, can be found rowing or boating on the outermost Cape Cod waterways.
Lauren Aguilar, PhD, is one of the world’s foremost scientific experts on inclusion and diversity, specializing in translating the science of diversity into actionable strategies that organizations and teams can use to foster more inclusive and diverse workplaces. She uses a data-driven yet human-centered approach to understand organizations, and loves working collaboratively with clients to design, execute, and support scientifically grounded diversity strategies. Lauren earned her PhD in social psychology at Columbia University and completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at Stanford University. When it’s karaoke night, you’ll hear her belting out “What’s Up” by 4 Non Blondes.
Jon Shafran, PhD partners with organizations to build strategies that are easy to execute and positively impact every employee. He believes that people are an organization’s most important asset, and organizations that cultivate a diverse workforce create the most innovative and profitable solutions. Jon has over seven years of experience working with startups, nonprofits, mid-size, and Fortune 500 companies on strategy, process improvement, customer success and talent development. Jon earned his PhD in sociology from the University of California San Diego. He lives in San Francisco but still considers San Diego his home away from home.
Drika Weller, PhD, is an expert in developing strategies that help organizations become more inclusive and diverse. Her training sessions on unconscious bias focus on educating participants to recognize it in the workplace, and provide action-oriented strategies that facilitate better judgments and behavior. Drika has a PhD in psychology with a focus on unconscious bias, and has published research on unconscious bias in the top journals in her field. When she’s not working, you can find her hanging out with her husband, two children, and her extended family in San Francisco.
Sharon is a social psychologist, researcher and consultant who understands that robust inclusion and diversity efforts need more than good intentions to be successful. She’s passionate about translating academic research from psychology, group dynamics and organizational behavior into practical industry-friendly solutions. After 10 years of academic research, Sharon transitioned to industry, first working as a researcher at Apple and now working with companies to implement best practices in recruitment, hiring and equitable evaluation practices. She’s also passionate about picking up new hobbies, so reach out if you have one she hasn’t tried yet.
Anna Dragotta, PhD, is a social/health psychologist who specializes in data analytics. Anna approaches her client partnerships with curiosity, warmth, and honesty, making her a good thought partner for employers who want to increase their work environments’ inclusiveness and their employees’ sense of belonging. As a researcher, she has studied communication within interpersonal relationships and its potential consequences for mental and physical health. When the day’s to-dos are done, you’ll almost always find Anna in the middle of a good book.
Erica is a “pinch hitter” who can flex across multiple streams of work, but her passion is in streamlining processes and creating effective learning to achieve business results. She is highly self-motivated, a creative problem solver and a relationship manager. She has over 10 years of experience in the business environment in Change Management, Strategic Planning, Instructional Design, and Program and Project Management. She’s currently dreaming of planning an epic trip to Greece, specifically Kalokairi, of Mamma Mia! fame.
Colin collaborates with and coaches teams during every phase of human-centered design, from the development and implementation of research strategies and interview guides, to early prototyping and experimentation. He enjoys building and testing business models and crafting compelling narratives that drive adoption. Colin got his start in design as a curriculum designer while working as an ESL teacher and has worked as a designer, design researcher, strategist, and coach, focusing on programs, tools, and services that drive long-lasting behavior change and cultural transformation. A self-proclaimed “learning nerd,” Colin loves studying languages, and often designs curricula and study materials for himself.
Susan is an experienced technical recruiter who brings creativity, leadership and a keen sixth sense to every role she recruits for. She loves a good recruiting challenge and once took on a project with a high-growth gaming client to hire 90 people in 90 days. In her downtime, she’s a voracious reader with a passion for travel.
Paul brings a keen eye for matching candidates to a firm’s culture, along with 20+ years of human resources management experience in large Fortune 100 companies and small entrepreneurial start-up organizations. In the last ten years, Paul has been both recruiting and coaching top talent. Training is in his blood — in his down time, he trains shelter dogs at the SF SPCA to ace their adoption interviews.
Stephanie is our go-to expert for consulting talent, finding the right match to our client’s needs and culture. She also moonlights as Forshay’s employee resource for all things HR. She navigates the employment process (and its otherwise painful paperwork) with grace, ease and an extra-large coffee in hand. In addition to her prodigious organizational talents, Stephanie also leads the recruiting and screening of Forshay’s exceptional talent.
Amanda is our go-to partner when it comes to candidate-sourcing and direct-hire searches. Amanda nails the culture complement — and that has translated to a proven track record when it comes to filling key roles at the executive level. Through her many years of experience, she has cultivated a vast network from sales and marketing to engineering and IT. An undercover country girl, Amanda’s bucket list includes the Kentucky Derby; her karaoke list nearly always starts with “9 to 5.”
Casey enjoys recruiting for a variety of roles and assisting candidates in finding work that allows them to lead their best lives. She has 7+ years of experience in digital marketing and communication with a Bachelor and Masters of Arts from Stanford University, where her research focused on the effects of new technology on human interaction. In her spare time, Casey volunteers as a coach for mock trial programs and runs a social media community called Genius Baking.
Mick serves as a Recruiting Partner, working with clients to source and screen candidates, as well as coordinate and conduct interviews. She enjoys the recruiting process, and loves to help individuals find their optimum work and life balance. She brings nearly 20 years of leadership and volunteer experience with multiple organizations throughout the Bay Area. When she’s not at work, she’s busy managing the lives of three active daughters, or grabbing a moment of alone time getting her car washed.
Ellen specializes in executive hire searches for startups and tech-enabled public companies. Her previous corporate experience and iterative workstyle help Ellen solve the complex puzzle of locating the right skills and experience her clients need to achieve transformational growth. When she’s not placing executive talent with top companies, she’s refining her yoga practice.
Michelle leads our operations and administration – spanning marketing, contracts, IT and finance. She’s also the Forshay talent concierge, client project contact, and general cat herder who makes the complicated, complex, and seemingly impossible possible. And if that’s not enough of a resume, she’s working on a screenplay about a New Jersey funeral (surprise: it’s a comedy!)