The Society for Human Resource Management recently elected three new HR executives to its 13-member board of directors for next year, an announcement that was applauded by critics who say that the association has too many leaders without human resources credentials. But concerns about the make-up of the board persist.
"We were pleased that three HR executives joined the board," says Mike Losey, former SHRM president and CEO and member of the SHRM Members for Transparency, a dissident group of former association leaders. "But when you add up all the members with HR certification and experience, we still have the lowest number of HR-certified professionals on the board in SHRM's history."
Only four members of SHRM's 2012 board of directors are certified by the Human Resources Certification Institute, which is viewed as the industry standard for evaluating HR practitioners' expertise. The 2011 board also has four HRCI-certified members.
The newly elected officials are: Coretha M. Rushing, chief human resources officer for Equifax Inc.; Brian D. Silva, senior vice president of human resources and administration for Fresenius Medical Care; and José Tomas, president of Latin America and Caribbean and global chief people officer for Burger King Corp. Both Silva and Tomas have certifications from the Institute.
Losey says the transparency group had considered sponsoring a write-in candidate but decided not to after SHRM leaders told the group in October that they "would be pleased" with the HR qualifications of several candidates. Transparency group members met with association leaders in October to discuss a list of ongoing issues, including the number of board members without HR experience.
The transparency group was formed last year regarding concerns about the board's 2005 decision to pay its members an annual salary.
"We are pleased to welcome these three highly experienced human resource executives to the SHRM Board of Directors. Their expertise—experiences with business strategy and the global marketplace and an understanding of a changing workforce—will help guide SHRM as it continues to serve the needs of its membership," said Henry G. (Hank) Jackson, president and CEO of SHRM in a written statement.
In addition to the new board members, Bette J. Francis, a board member since 2007, was re-elected as chair-designate. She will replace current board chair Jose A. Berrios in 2013.
Also, Jorge Consuegra, a global business and marketing executive, and My-Chau Nguyen, senior vice president of customer relationship marketing for Sirius XM Radio, were re-elected. Both Consuegra and Nguyen were named to the board in October 2011
The other re-elected members are: Jeffrey M. Cava, executive vice president and chief human resources officer, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.; Calvin W. Finch, senior vice president and chief financial officer, CPP, Inc.; James A. Kaitz, president and CEO, Association for Financial Professionals; Gary P. Latham, secretary of state professor of organizational behavior, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto; and Virda M. Rhem, director of human resources, Texas Property and Casualty Insurance Guaranty Association.
Also continuing on the 2012 board will be Berrios, who is serving the final year of his two-year term as chair, and Jackson.
In addition to Silva and Tomas, Francis and Rhem also have HRCI certifications.