What do you believe are the greatest challenges facing HR in 2024 and beyond?


HR is confronting challenges like integrating AI and digital transformation, adapting to new work models, enhancing DEI, supporting well-being, understanding generational needs, using data strategically, and fostering sustainability. AI's role is pivotal, offering efficiencies but also raising ethical considerations and the need for job evolution. Addressing these issues requires creative strategies in leadership, recruitment, and retention to build a workplace culture that's both inclusive and forward-looking.


How has your experience as an entrepreneur and a professor influenced your career in HR leadership?


Drawing on my entrepreneurial and academic experiences, my approach to HR leadership focuses on resilience, innovation, and a relentless pursuit of excellence. These roles have taught me the importance of strategic talent management and creating a culture that encourages continuous growth and exceptional performance. This foundation shapes my leadership, setting high standards for both myself and my teams, and driving a shared commitment to surpassing those benchmarks.


You’ve worked with employees from different cultures and industries? Tell me about that.


Throughout my career, I've collaborated with individuals from diverse cultures and sectors, notably beginning with projects serving Hispanic and Native American communities at Devau HR and during my graduate studies. I've applied these insights across various industries, emphasizing recruitment and retention in environments that celebrate diversity. My approach is anchored in the belief in the transformative power of "people serving people," driving innovation and operational excellence. This philosophy has guided me to create workplaces where every individual feels empowered to contribute, leveraging the unique perspectives and talents of diverse teams for collective success. 


Tell me about a time you were challenged ethically in the workplace environment?


Early in my career, I faced an ethical challenge by reporting a VP for discrimination, leading to their termination after an investigation. This decades-old experience solidified my commitment to workplace integrity. It informs my current HR approach in financial services, emphasizing transparency, accountability, and a zero-tolerance policy for misconduct. This foundational moment has continuously guided my efforts to ensure a respectful, inclusive work environment, a principle increasingly vital today.


How would your past bosses describe you and your work performance?


My management teams, including mentor Terry Wilkey at Devau HR, would highlight my key role in strategic discussions and mutual mentorship. They'd praise my positive engagement, ability to build rockstar teams, strong work ethic, process improvement drive, and competency to execute a strategic vision. Acknowledged as an impactful educator and communicator in HR leadership, my contributions and innovative solutions have marked me as an exceptional leader, distinguishing me in the HR domain.