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January 2018 Meeting

    Happy New Year!

    The buzz of the New Year was in the air as our chapter President, Michael Timmes opened the meeting with some general announcements. 

    -On a sad note, we acknowledged and celebrated the life of Mary Ann Schulz, a former President and member of our Chapter who tragically lost her life during the New Year holiday. The legacy Mary Ann has left is marked with her countless acts of compassion for her family, friends and the community. She truly was a pillar in the community for so many individuals. For those who were fortunate enough to know or interact with Mary Ann, it was a privilege. Our heartfelt condolences go out to her family and loved ones.

    -We extended a warm welcome to our two new members, Lisa Markowitz and Lucille Petti-Goldblatt.

    -In addition we had four guests – Chloe Krimmel, Felice Brown, Tony Cipriano and Vaughan Reale.


    JSAHR Membership
    If you have not already done so, be sure renew your JSAHR membership so you don’t skip a beat by logging onto the website.  Also, did you know that you can save money by purchasing a full year monthly meeting pack. It’s $270 to pre-pay for all of the meetings.  There is an additional fee for the legal sessions.  Members who wish to pre-pay can do so by contacting Christine Higgins at for details.


    Diversity Minute
    In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday this month, we shared some fun facts about him. Did you know…

    -His birth name was actually Michael, not Martin. His father, Michael King Sr., became inspired by the historic German theologian Martin Luther and changed his own name in homage to the historian.  Michael King Jr. was five years old at the time and King Sr. made the decision to change his son’s name to Martin Luther as well.

    -He entered college at the age of 15, skipping two grades in high school and received his bachelor’s degree at the age of 19.

    -His famous “I Have a Dream” speech was not the first speech he gave at the Lincoln Memorial. Six years prior King delivered a speech in which he urged America to “give us the ballot”. He, along with other civil rights leaders spoke during the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom to a crowd estimated at between 15,000 and 30,000.


    Legal Minute
    Rich Cino, our resident attorney addressed new tax laws that recently went into effect in certain states that relate to cases of confidentiality. The new laws now limit companies from writing off payments of settlement as business expenses. This can have an impact on how these types of cases are settled. Reach out to Rich or your legal team for more details.


    Monthly HR Poll
    The results of last month’s questions on managing workplace conflict were tallied and shared with the group. Keep your eyes open for an email with this month’s questions. Results will be shared at the February meeting. Thank you for your participation.

    Giving Back
    We are happy to announce that we reached our chapter goal and raised over $1000 for the SHRM Foundation. For those who don’t know (I didn’t) the vision of the SHRM Foundation is “​Empowered HR professionals building inclusive organizations where all employees thrive and organizations achieve success”.  You can click on link to learn more about their mission and what the foundation does to support the HR world.

    A big THANKS to Janice Stapley, our Chapter Charity Champion, for all her efforts and to our members for all of their support.


    This month’s speaker was Steve Gardner who spoke about Collaboration and Conflict Resolution Using Mutual Gains Problem Solving.

    Steve talked about the values and differences of accommodating, comprise, competition, collaboration and cooperation. We did some fun exercises that demonstrated different types of behavior that promote effective communication focusing on an interest based problem solving approach. Some conclusions were:

    -there is always a common interest if you collaborate to find it
    -it is important to step back and take a look at the big picture
    -good (effective) communication is key

    Steve concluded with a great story that I will do my best to recap here:

    There were three sons whose father recently passed. The father left the three sons 17 camels split up as follows: ½ of the camels to #1 son, 1/3 of the camels to #2 son, and 1/9 of the camels to #3 son.

    The sons argued for days as to how to split up the camels:

    1/2 of 17 – is that 8 or 9

    1/3 of 17 – is that 5 or 6

    1/9 of 17 – is that 1 or 2

    Well, their neighbor, who finally got sick of hearing the sons argue, offered them his one camel if they would find a way to resolve the issues and quiet down.

    Now they had 18 camels and here’s what happened. I was clear that…

    1/2 of 18 = 9

    1/3 of 18 = 6

    1/9 of 18 = 2

    Add 9+6+2 and you get 17. After splitting up the camels, they had one extra camel to give back to the neighbor and all worked out. Which, I believe, is the moral of the story…if you work together you will find a solution to any problem.

    See you all next month.