Darren is the Founder and Managing Director of Challis & Company. He has led many successful searches for non-executive directors, CEOs, country managers and other senior executives across a range of industries particularly media, digital, consumer, financial services, professional services and private equity. He has also completed many management assessments and board reviews.
Before founding Challis & Company, Darren worked for a number of years as a consultant with DH International—founding and building a highly regarded, nine-person practice in its first two years—and Egon Zehnder.
Prior to his executive search career, Darren worked as a corporate and finance lawyer with Minter Ellison. He then worked as a Consultant and Project Leader at The Boston Consulting Group, leading a number of strategy projects for large Australian and global clients. Darren then joined Fairfax Media Limited [ASX: FXJ], initially as Director, Commercial Strategy and subsequently as Group Director, New Media Development. During his time at Fairfax, he led the company’s digital M&A process, leading to several successful acquisitions including Trade Me, RSVP and Stayz. Darren also served as a non-executive director on the board of a venture capital-backed ASX-listed company.
Darren holds a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws with First Class Honours from The University of Sydney. He also graduated with a full-time MBA at the Australian Graduate School of Management, completed on exchange to the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Over the years, Darren has also served on a number of community boards. He has twice been elected to the University Council at The University of New South Wales, its governing body, where he also served on the University’s Finance Committee and Planning Committee, and as a Governor of its Alumni Association.