David Cope joined the team in 2002 after a long and successful international career in education and management, and from then until 2019 ran the UK office of Search Associates. Since July 2018 he has also held the position of Director of School Relations in the Executive Team of Search Associates, and is now focusing full-time on that leadership role.
A Cambridge graduate with a BA and MA in History, he taught History, English and Spanish for five years before becoming a headmaster. For twenty years he led three British schools in the UK and France (Dover College, the British School of Paris and Marlborough College), with a special commitment to furthering co-education and international education. During this time he developed staff exchanges and other close working links with schools in Australia, Canada, France, the Gambia, Germany, India, Japan, Jordan, New Zealand, South Africa, Ukraine and the US.
David has also had substantial senior management experience in other fields, including British Council representation in Mexico and running the VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) programme in Zambia. He was also responsible for building up the UK branch of Ashoka, a US-based development agency supporting 3500+ social entrepreneurs in more than ninety countries worldwide.
His career has involved extensive travel throughout Europe, Africa, North, Central and South America, the Middle East, Asia and Australia , with visits to many schools of all kinds.
He has been an active member of the British HMC (Headmasters and Headmistresses Conference), serving on its overseas membership and academic policy committees, and also of ECIS (European Council of International Schools). He was a founder member and for five years Treasurer of COBISEC (Council of British Independent Schools in The European Communities), now COBIS. He has also served on many school boards, both in the UK and overseas, and is thoroughly well versed in all aspects of school governance and management and staff recruitment at every level.
The Executive Team (ET) oversees and manages the governance and operations of Search Associates.
Currently the following are members of the ET: Jessica Magagna (Chief Executive Officer), Rajiv Bhat (Chief Operating Officer), David Cope (Director of School Relations), George Entwistle (Director of Consulting Services), Brent Mutsch (Senior Consultant).