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Event Details

    September 2019 - Half-Day Fall Conference

    Date: September 11, 2019, 7:15am – 1:15pm
    Shirley McNutt, VP of Professional Development
    NIU Rockford Conference Center
    8500 E. State Street
    Rockford, IL 61108
    Members $50.00/Non-Member $75.00
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     07:15 - 07:55         Registration/Breakfast

     07:40 - 08:00         Welcome – Cara Freund, Rockford SHRM President and a word from our                                                sponsors.

     08:00 - 09:30         HR's Role in Preventing Identity Theft

                                   Heatherlen Lewis-Heath

                                   WorkPlace Banking Financial Sales Consultant, PNC Bank

                                   Stephanie Martinez, SHRM-CP, PHR

                                   CEO & Founder, HRDesigned4U LLC

    09:30 – 09:50         B R E A K

    09:50 - 11:20          Preparing Organizations for armed attackers and workplace violence.

                                  Joe Drought

                                  Retired Chief of Police/Owner of Freedom River Defense, LLC

    11:20 – 11:40        B R E A K

    11:40 - 01:10        Get Intentional about Managing Culture: Moving from "Squishy" to "Business Results"

      Charlie Judy

      President, QuestionPro Workforce

    01:15 - 02:15      BOX LUNCH - Stay to unpack all we've learned or grab and dash!



    PNC: 7 Years this fall; WorkPlace Banking Program: 5 years; 13 years total in the financial industry

    Originally from the Milwaukee market where she started with PNC. She moved to the Chicago market 3 years ago when she got married and relocated here in IL.

    She enjoys her time in the branches helping clients with their financial needs. Her passion falls within the out of branch opportunities that she has been able to experience over the years. This started early in her career when she was a part of opening a brand new branch in the Milwaukee area. She participated heavily in community events and worked hand in hand with the WorkPlace team during those opportunities. She was excited to join the WorkPlace team and have the ability to bring the bank and the additional benefits of the WorkPlace program to the companies they partner with. She truly enjoy meeting with Human Resource contacts and clients; and being able to help them in their financial journey through the program and their financial education.


    Stephanie Martinez is a successful HR leader, consultant, facilitator and coach with 19 years in HR. Focused on working with small to mid-sized organizations to customize solutions around their people issues.  She focuses on four key areas which include: talent solutions, developing and retaining talent, getting the organization in compliance, and establishing a strong foundation and structure for HR that aligns with the business.  Stephanie is a results-driven leader with extensive experience in talent management, development, strategic planning, organizational effectiveness, executive coaching, and employee relations as a Human Resources (HR) practitioner and consultant. 

    Stephanie enjoys working with stakeholders, senior executives, HR leaders, and first line managers on the people issues that are prohibiting their organization from reaching their full potential.  She has worked with organizations on setting the direction for the organization through a SWOT Analysis/Strategic Planning sessions; creating training sessions around having constructive conversations and managing performance; or defining a talent acquisition strategy that hires for people that will enhance the culture and productivity of the organization.  Stephanie strives to work with her clients as a trusted partner and sincerely cares about making a difference in their organization.  It’s not about her, it’s about them.


    Joe Drought began his law enforcement career in the U.S. Army Military Police Corps in 1981, where he served for nine years, including 7 ½ years on active duty and 1 ½ years in the Army Reserve. He also served for more than three years as a deputy, detective, SWAT team member, and dog handler with the Ogle County Sheriff’s Office. 

    Joe then served the Rock Valley College Police Department for almost 26 years and as the Chief of Police of that department for nearly 23 years.  He recently retired from Rock Valley College.  Joe recently started his own business, Freedom River Defense, LLC, for the purposes of providing consultation and training on the topics of emergency planning, self-defense options, including specific measures to take in response to armed attackers/active shooters.

    Joe has been an instructor in many police topics such as, firearms, defensive tactics, less-lethal weapons, tactics, and self-defense.  However, he has spent most of his instruction time over the last 20 years teaching police officers throughout northern Illinois on tactics in response to active shooters. He and his team of sergeants developed a training course for Rock Valley College’s faculty and staff titled Practical Response to Active Shooter.  This course covers practical measure a person can take when faced with an armed attacker.  Over the past 11 years, Joe and his crew have trained approximately 3,000 people throughout the region on these life-saving options.

    Joe has been married to his wife, Donna, for 31 years, and they are the proud parents of two adult children, Matthew and Kristen.


    While Charlie Judy spent the preponderance of his career as an HR leader, he has always had an affinity for data. In fact, he began his career as a CPA where he honed that passion. Charlie forged a successful career over 25-years as an HR Executive with some of the world’s most prominent professional services organizations, including Deloitte, Navigant, and Baker Tilly; he has traversed the global economy while working in Chicago, New York, St. Louis, Brussels, Belgium, and Hyderabad, India. He’s now the President of Workforce at QuestionPro, a global survey-based analytics company. Charlie is an SPHR SHRM-SCP, and a graduate of Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business. He resides in Chicago with his family of five (dog included).

    This month's sponsors are:

    Registration is now closed for this event. Please email to inquire about late registration.