Guiding You Towards Sustainable Professional Success


Senior Human Resources and Talent Acquisition Professional

Denise Maldonado Males is the founder and principal of Candlewood Career Advisors. She is a senior human resources business partner who has specialized in talent acquisition and recruitment throughout her career.

Denise has held leadership positions at Fortune 500 and entrepreneurial companies in sports, advertising, media, research, and information services including Major League Baseball, Universal Music Group, Time Inc., and AJAM where she helped launch a new cable TV news channel.

Denise has been an active member of numerous associations including She Runs It (AWNY/Advertising Women of NY), NAMIC/National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications, and WISE/Women in Sports and Events. She earned her B.A. in English and is a published contributor to the book "The Insider's Guide to Finding a Job".


"Denise has been my coach and mentor for 25 years.

On multiple occasions, Denise helped me update and improve my resume and LinkedIn profile and shared tips to effectively interview and onboard as a new employee. She advised me on how to navigate corporate politics, processes, and relationships which facilitated multiple promotions and rotations. This all helped build my knowledge, confidence, reputation, and career.

After years working in corporate environments, I decided to open my marketing consultancy. Denise was super helpful as I evolved my career path. Most recently she helped me position my consultancy to pitch and land a substantial new client.

Denise’s advice is always 100% accurate - truly amazing! She is intelligent, insightful, experienced, and accessible. I always feel that she is “on my side”. Denise is one of the most caring and genuine people I have ever met. I am confident that anyone would have the exact same experience."

"Denise’s work surpasses the discipline of Career Coaching.

She has a masterful knack for knowing how to invoke your true strengths, passions, and career goals to bring out a clarity of purpose and desire that is often hard to pinpoint on your own. Denise’s advice is tailored to your personal aspirations where she gives you one-on-one suggestions that are truly specific to the highest potential she sees in you. I see her as a guidance counselor for life!

She is an invaluable resource and has coached me from entering the job market post-graduate school through coming back to the professional field after a maternity leave into an ambitious career change which brought me to a very rewarding new role.

I have used her services in résumé building, LinkedIn organization, and mock interview coaching. Denise’s unique insight into the job market with her range of high-ranking roles in the extremely competitive NYC job market is priceless!"

"I have been working with Denise Males for almost a year. She is a Senior Human Resources Business Partner and Talent Acquisition advisor with amazing experience across Fortune 500, startups, and emerging companies across media, research, and analytics.

Her many years of experience have been very helpful in guiding me through the new normal of interviewing during the pandemic, updating my resume, and creating a new LinkedIn profile.

Denise is extremely easy to work with, very positive, professional, and has a wonderful upbeat personality that is extremely motivational.

I highly recommend Denise for any of your HR needs. She is a rockstar!"

"I had the privilege of first meeting Denise as my direct contact for an internship position at the league office of Major League Baseball.  At that time she was to assist with logistics of the internship while being a “mentor” figure for the duration of the summer internship, and she is still mentoring me! And that’s what makes Denise so special….she cares!

Her expertise in this field is evident, but her delivery of this knowledge and information is what is so unique.  She can make a complete stranger feel comfortable and competent in an area that most people are unfamiliar with and fear.

With Denise’s experience and knowledge she was able to assist me with everything including resume, cover letters, references, the interviewing process, professionalism within the workplace, ideas to set yourself apart, 401k tips, future positions, and more…..but in actuality it was her friendship and heart that makes her a “GREAT FRIEND” today.

I highly recommend utilizing Denise’s services. She will challenge you to think outside the box, she will help put you in the best position possible for your career path, and she will use her personality and heart to make the process fun and everlasting."

"I had a 30-year career in the financial services industry and was laid off through attrition. Not able to retire, I needed to stay in the work force. HR vet Denise Males provided me an inside view of what companies are looking for and how they hire. She designed my resume so that I was noticed by corporate HR departments.

Denise is an HR veteran who has invaluable industry experience in an everchanging employment environment. She saved me time and money by her counsel and resume design. She is a pleasure to deal with, straightforward, and beyond knowledgeable. She can’t guarantee you will get the job, but she will get you to the front of the interview line. Her resume design got me an interview within two weeks, and I believe her interview counsel helped me get an offer. Top notch and well worth the money. I give her 5 stars!!"

"Denise was invaluable to me. She took the time to break down my resume line-by-line and shared her advice as well as the context behind it. She provided genuine and personal guidance and significantly shaped my outlook on pursuing my new career. Thank you, Denise!"

"Feeling so beaten up from my job search efforts, which spanned at least 1-1/2 years, I turned to Denise wanting her expertise. I was so frustrated from submitting to jobs where I met the qualifications yet couldn’t get past the ATS to have my resume reviewed by an actual person. I was mentally exhausted from the entire process.

My first call with Denise provided me with valuable insights including reasons why my resume was likely not getting past the system and being seen by a person, and even changes I needed to make when it came to the applying process. Denise made me realize how much time I was spending on certain things which ultimately was hurting me and adding to my feeling of job search fatigue.

Once I had my new resume completed, I was eager to resume submitting and this time it was with a revamped approach. Within two months I had more interviews than I had in the 1-1/2 years prior. I couldn’t believe how I went from not being able to get anyone’s attention to having interviews with multiple companies at the same time.

Thanks to Denise’s efforts I landed a new job! Working with Denise throughout the process not only helped me to get noticed but also gave me back my confidence when it came to the job search process. I’ve known Denise for years so I had every bit of confidence in her when I reached out, but she exceeded my expectations in every way.

I highly recommend her to anyone going through the job search process."

“After graduating college a few years ago and the pandemic hitting, I was feeling lost on my career path and waiting for a new opportunity. That opportunity finally came with Denise, and things have worked out perfectly ever since.

Not knowing which direction to go in, I explained to Denise what I wanted in a career. She helped me choose a career that involves my passions as well as my college degree, and then emailed me important tips and information about it. As well as sharing her advice and wisdom with me, she also re-designed and re-wrote my old resume so it would be more efficient in the application process. Denise walked me through updating my Linkedin profile to look more presentable and match up with my resume. She then kindly proofread a few of my cover letters, as she was also an English major. Besides having an impressive and diverse work background, and being extremely gifted in her expertise, she is also very kind and caring. I felt an instant weight off my shoulders after talking with her.

One opportunity led to another, and I have a job now! Things couldn’t have worked out more perfectly. I highly recommend Denise for all of her services and expertise. Thank you so much Denise, for everything!”