Bo Pennell, Managing Director    

Bo Pennell joined Townsend Search Group in 2016. He has a record of successful searches for the finance, accounting and operational functions at levels from senior analyst to the C-suite. Bo gained his first executive search experience with one of the nation’s largest search firms, rising by his second year to the Top 10 percent among over 500 recruiters nationwide. He was recognized as a “Top Producer” during that tenure, finding his way to Townsend as he searched for a small, high-engagement firm that delivers leaders with lasting success.

Prior to becoming an executive search consultant, Bo was an entrepreneur who started and operated successful businesses serving homeowners, from landscaping to construction. Building trustworthy personal relationships was Bo’s guiding star as an entrepreneur. It’s the same today in making executive matches. 

Bo is disciplined in uncovering the interrelated workings for every facet of the businesses he serves. He is methodical in his search for exceptional candidates by taking into consideration how the candidates think and their work styles. Beyond what people present on their resumes, there are intangible assets to be evaluated using intuition and finesse: drive, ambition, initiative, and the ability for quick insight as examples. These are telling differences between candidates. 

Bo earned his Bachelors of Art degree in Finance and Business Management from DePaul University and enjoys spending time with his family, watersports, cooking and entertaining.

I truly love what I do: learning about new companies, industries and how things work. Furthermore, I believe that my diverse background leads
to an understanding of what works and what doesn’t, especially when it comes to professional relationships.  It all comes down to mutual trust.”



Growing up in metro Detroit, Bo was part of an entrepreneurial family. At age 18, he was needed to step in and take over the commercial Christmas tree farm begun by his father in the Cadillac area. Alternately managing the business and attending college, he oversaw a venture that shipped predominantly to the southern U.S and Chicago area. He also operated two retail tree lots in metro Detroit for the 7-day-a-week season preceding the Christmas holiday.


Following college, he started a landscape supply business, later forming a second company to perform landscape construction. Skillful in business and managing projects, he turned next to home remodeling and renovation, ultimately employing 30-plus craftsmen, truck drivers, equipment operators and laborers. After 12 years, he would sell his businesses and seek a career in professional search, discovering the field through his wife’s experiences with the recruitment industry.

Outside work, Bo enjoys spending time with his wife and three young children. They are passionate about boating, wake surfing and other watersports. He also enjoys cooking and entertaining. The family finds adventure in world travels to broaden their horizons, and Bo is motivated to provide his children with unlimited educational opportunities.


Bo is inspired by a challenge and not afraid to get his hands dirty. Extra motivated by his wife’s skepticism about his ability to build a patio fire pit, he delivered what’s now the envy of neighbors.