Centerpoint Newsletter January 2020

Greetings from the HR Tomorrow Committee!

Dahlman and Bisek


Happy New Year and welcome to 2020! We hope you’re having a great start to your year and decade! With a new year, many of us bring our focus to transformation for the future or reflect on the changes that occurred over the past year. While we may do this personally, we on the HR Tomorrow Committee have been thinking about how the HR profession has transformed over the last year, the past decade, and what is to come.


With that, we are thrilled to announce this year’s conference, HR Tomorrow: Workforce Transformation on Friday, April 17, 2020.  We are thankful to be joined by our amazing planning committee members, Kate Andrews, Larry Morgan, Rachel Yates, Padma Tamma, and Francis Sadac to create this impactful day! For those who haven’t attended before, this conference is regarded as one of the most acclaimed and noteworthy professional development events in town.


This year, we will be hearing from two outstanding keynote speakers:


  • Heidi Capozzi, SVP of HR for Boeing and 1998 MA-IR Alumna
  • Chris Farrell, Journalist for PBS Next Avenue and the Star Tribune. His latest book is titled Purpose and a Paycheck: Finding Meaning, Money, and Happiness in the Second Half of Life.


In addition, we have a full slate of fantastic breakout speakers who will speak on a variety of transformation topics, including agility, workforce changes, diversity and inclusion, employee experience and design thinking.


For the fourth year in a row, we are proud to offer an HR Tomorrow Scholarship that covers attendance for an HR professional working for a nonprofit. If you’d like to be considered for a complimentary ticket to attend, please apply here by March 1. And, as usual, we will be applying for recertification credits through HRCI and SHRM—what a great way to get credit while honing your knowledge and skills!


We invite you to visit the HR Tomorrow website where you’ll see the wide range of topics and great speakers on the schedule. Registration will open February 3 and the conference typically sells out, so don’t delay! Additionally, check out our LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter sites where we will be sharing stories of HR transformations leading up to the conference. If you have a story to share, we encourage you to post!




Kelly Dahlman, ‘16
Mary Kate Bisek, ‘16
HR Tomorrow Committee Co-Chairs


HR Tomorrow Header


Registration Opens February 3 for HR Tomorrow Conference
We look forward to seeing you in Minneapolis on April 17 for the 41st annual HR Tomorrow Conference, “Workforce Transformation #HowWeTransform.” Registration will open on Monday, February 3. Check out the conference website for a current list of speakers and our generous sponsors.


HR Tomorrow Scholarship Available
If you work for a non-profit organization and are interested in attending the HR Tomorrow Conference at the Carlson School of Management on April 17, visit this link to apply for a scholarship to attend for free! The deadline is March 1 and you will be notified by March 15.


People Analytics: Driving Strategy with Data
Join Carlson Executive Education for a 2-day leadership development course on people analytics. Business leaders are surrounded by vast troves of employee-level data and in many cases, this data isn’t being leveraged to its full potential. This course will help participants realize the potential of their data through improving people-related decision-making and driving business strategy. Participants will learn analytics terminology, framework, and technologies as well as how to act on the insights their data provides. They will hear about approaches used by other organizations to get through the adoption curve, including use cases on turnover, employee engagement, employee selection, and diversity and inclusion. This program is valid for 12 PDCs for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®. More info available here.


CHRLS 75 Anniversary

Calling All Alumni! Mark Your Calendars for Our 75th Anniversary!
Alumni, plan to travel to Minneapolis on Friday, September 25 to help the Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies celebrate our 75th Anniversary! It will be a great opportunity to visit campus, catch up with former classmates, reconnect with favorite faculty and staff, and celebrate the program that helped launch your career! Watch for more details later this spring. Questions? Want to help? Contact us at


Alumni Association Presents Career Month – February 2020
Are you just starting out in your career and searching for new skills?  Maybe you are looking to make a career shift and unsure where to begin planning? Interested in learning about labor trends in Minnesota?  Are you looking to make new career connections? Find a mentor? Be a mentor? Wherever you are in your career journey, the University of Minnesota’s Alumni Association is here to be a resource and a connector. Throughout February, the Alumni Association is rolling out webinars, workshops, Facebook Live discussions and networking events around the world to ignite career success. 


Solving Real-World HR Issues in HRIR Capstone Course
As current MHRIR students conclude their program of study, a required capstone course synthesizes all their academic experience and facilitates their transition into professional success and responsibility, with a little help from partner organizations. The course that MHRIR Program Director Stacy Doepner-Hove teaches, "HRIR in Practice: Strategy, Execution and Ethics," provides an important opportunity for students to connect with companies and refine the knowledge and skills they've gained during their studies.

Professor Emeritus Ross Azevedo – 1942 – 2020

Ross Azevedo


It is with heavy hearts that we announce the death of Professor Emeritus Ross Azevedo, who passed away in early January. Ross spent over 35 years teaching and researching labor markets, compensation and collective bargaining. Although he retired in 2010, Ross remained a strong presence within the Carlson School and will be remembered and missed by many. Read more here.


Each issue of Centerpoint highlights a member of our alumni community, a current student, and a member of our staff and faculty. Learn more about alumna Michele Ramirez, first-year student Zhaoyi (Connie) Zeng, and CHRLS staff member Anne Obst.

Want to get the latest news from the CHRLS? Wondering who the next 1st Tuesday speaker will be? Interested in seeing photos from campus? Stay connected with your alma mater by following our social media sites:​

  •  LinkedIn - find our group (Carlson School of Management - HRIR) here 
  •  Facebook - find our page here
  •  Twitter - find our feed here
  •  HRIR Blog - find our blog here and sign up to follow it (in the bottom right-hand corner of the page)
  • Kelly Schick, ’03, is Chief Human Resources Officer at AMAG Pharmaceuticals
  • Mindy (Empey) Schwabenbauer, ‘10, is an HR program manager, M&A, at Amazon
  • Bridget Szeluga, ’11, is a director of human resources at McDonald’s
  • Amy Tills, ’02, is vice president of HR at SPX Cooling Technologies
  • Weilu (Wendy) Xu, ’11, is an HR analyst at Futurewei Technologies