Desmond Hunte

Desmond Hunte is an experienced executive with over twenty years of financial and operations leadership across public and private organizations around the world.  


Prior to joining HR&A, he most recently served as the Chief Operating Officer of a DC-based consulting/lobbying firm and as a key strategic leader at an international NGO in Geneva and a large international financial institution. Throughout his career, he has worked with partners and business leaders to develop and implement strategies that maximized performance, maintained excellent client service, and scaled best practices across finance, operations, IT, and administrative functions.

Desmond holds a MS and BS in Accounting from Wake Forest University.

Susy Vaca

Susy leads the People and Culture function, building strategies, systems, and processes that drive growth and are centered around ADEI. She provides strategic leadership and human resources expertise to execute strategies for a full suite of People and Culture programs, including deploying staff to client projects, recruitment, retention, performance management, professional development, benefits, ADEI, and employee engagement.


Susy is a strategic HR leader with nearly two decades of experience across diverse industries, the majority of which has been in professional services. She specializes in driving organizational success through holistic people strategies.

In her previous role, Susy played a pivotal part in overseeing the people team for a $1 billion business. Leading a team of professionals, she served as a strategic partner to executive leadership, contributing to the success of the organization. Susy’s expertise extends to the talent management life cycle, including onboarding, talent review, compensation strategy development, well-being strategies, leadership preparedness programs and retention efforts.

With a dynamic background that includes roles at RSM, Deloitte, Kate Spade, and Pace University she brings a rich blend of experience to her HR leadership roles. She holds an MBA in Human Resources and International Business, along with a BBA in Business Management and a minor in Latin American Studies, both earned at Pace University.

Home for Susy is Ridgefield Park, NJ, where she enjoys creating memories with her vibrant 8-year-old son and her supportive husband. Guided by her favorite quote from Maya Angelou — ‘I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’ — Susy strives to leave a lasting positive impact on everyone she encounters.

Alex Lebow

Alex leads the firm’s approach to business strategy and development, marketing and communications, and product development.


Alex previously led teams and initiatives across communications, marketing, stakeholder engagement, and corporate affairs at Nike. As Senior Director of Industry Engagement, his portfolio focused on the intersection of growth and corporate social responsibility.

Prior to Nike, Alex served as a senior aide to New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, managing partnerships with corporate, philanthropic, community and service organizations. He held positions in the offices of former Congressman Barney Frank and US Senator Barbara Boxer, and worked as a middle school teacher through Teach for America. He also co-founded Youth Run NOLA, a sports-based youth development program that has empowered thousands of young people across dozens of schools in South Louisiana through running for over ten years. Alex served on the board of the largest provider of homeless services in Portland, Oregon, helped pass an early childhood education ballot measure and supports a Boston-based youth development organization advancing food access. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California.

Jeff Hébert

A former senior city official and current global thought leader in economic revitalization and climate policy, Jeff Hébert is the CEO of HR&A Advisors, overseeing the company’s strategic direction and operations across its six offices.


Jeff has spent his career developing strategies that adapt and respond to changing economies and environments. Over the past twenty years, he has advised corporations, governments, non-profits, and philanthropies on issues of public policy, economic development, and climate resilience.

Since joining the firm in 2019, Jeff has served on the firm’s Management Committee and since 2020 as HR&A’s President, where he was critical to the historic growth of the company’s business and number of employees. He has also been a leader in the firm’s economic development and climate resilience practices with recent projects in New York City, Newark, Los Angeles, Houston, Miami, New Orleans, Dallas, Tulsa, and Washington, DC.

Jeff has supported the development of the firm’s largest business lines, including Broadband and Digital Equity, Inclusive Cities and Equitable Governance, and Housing Affordability. He also led the company’s ADEI initiative, which led to HR&A being named a 2023 New York Urban League Champion for Recruitment, Retention, and Belonging.

Before joining HR&A, Jeff served Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the City of New Orleans in many capacities including as the First Deputy Mayor & Chief Administrative Officer, Chief Resilience Officer, and as Executive Director of the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority in the years following Hurricane Katrina. He has been an adjunct faculty member at the Tulane University School of Architecture, is Chairman of FUSE Corps, and serves on the Policy Advisory Board of The Reinvestment Fund, the Advisory Board of the ULI Randall Lewis Center for Sustainability in Real Estate, and the Boards of the Urban Design Forum, New Hope Housing, Climate Mayors, and the Greater New Orleans Foundation.

Jeff was selected for the Future Leaders program (PIPA) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France in 2018 where he studied the country’s climate change policy. He was also honored in 2016 by GOOD magazine as one of 100 extraordinary individuals tackling global issues in creative ways.

Jeff holds a bachelor’s degree from New York University, a master’s degree in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and is a graduate of the Achieving Excellence program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.