Houston CHRO Executive Summit

December 11, 2019 | JW Marriott Houston by the Galleria

December 11, 2019
JW Marriott Houston by the Galleria

Collaborate with your peers

Get together with your peers to tackle top business challenges through peer-driven content and discussions at the Houston CHRO Executive Summit.

Join your peers to discuss the most critical issues impacting CHROs today:

Leading through a new employee experience

Redesigning HR strategies, structures, and service delivery models

Modernizing mental health and well-being programs in a new era of work

Houston CHRO Governing Body

The Governing Body Co-Chairs shape the summit agenda, ensuring that all content is driven by CHROs, for CHROs.


Bill Ennis

Academy Sports & Outdoors

Mayerland Harris

Group VP, Human Resources

Shibu Varghese

M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
SVP, HR and Business Operations


December 10, 2019

6:00pm - 8:30pm  Governing Body Welcome Reception

The Art of Innovation — Creativity at Work

Noah Scalin headshot

Noah Scalin

Artist, Innovation Consultant

Another Limited Rebellion

Hear from artist/author, Noah Scalin, on how to sustain innovation in both work and life. During this interactive session, participants will have the opportunity to practice key concepts immediately with a high-energy, hands-on workshop and a facilitated discussion to cull insights and applications.

In this interactive session you will:

  • Explore personal leadership practices that foster a culture of innovation
  • Discover “The Big 7” practices that you can use to continually learn and grow in your work
  • Participate in a Creative Sprint® challenge that will keep participants creating and connecting after the workshop ends

December 11, 2019 - morning

7:30am - 8:45am  Registration & Breakfast

8:45am - 9:00am  Opening Comments

9:00am - 9:30am  Keynote

Unlocking the Potential of Untapped Talent

Tina James headshot

Tina James

Chief People Officer


Tina James, will be discussing the development, growth and impact of our Bridges program, which is an innovative hiring initiative designed to connect talented people with disabilities to qualified career opportunities at H-E-B.

9:30am - 9:50am  Networking Break

9:50am - 10:40am  Breakout Session

Your Most Important Audience

Linda Aldred headshot

Linda Aldred


Texas Children's Hospital

Join this session to explore how Texas Children’s activated a culture and employer brand strategy that positioned the organization as a compelling place to work and drove key business outcomes related to attracting new talent. 

 Learn strategies for:

  • Building a differentiating approach to attracting new talent 
  • Taking bold moves to transform outreach through contemporary digital tools and storytelling
  • Dialing into your most important audience to drive future outcomes 

9:50am - 10:40am  Breakout Session

Gratitude From the Ground Up

Corinne Selk headshot

Corinne Selk

Solutions Consultant


Can human connections serve as the foundation for organizational success? Through data-driven stories of gratitude, Corinne Selk will explore the business value of creating a more human workplace.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Create an employee experience strategy that builds inclusion
  • Empower your employees to own your company culture
  • Unify teams around shared values and business goals

9:50am - 10:40am  Executive Boardroom

The CHRO's Next-Generation Technology Manifesto

Veronica Delgado headshot

Veronica Delgado

SVP, Global Human Resources & Administration

Universal Weather and Aviation

Chuck Kemper headshot

Chuck Kemper

President, People & Organization - Asset Solutions Americas


Harish Peri headshot

Harish Peri

VP, Next Gen Growth and Go to Market


Everyone seems to be talking about the future of work, but can we really predict tomorrow? To prepare, CHROs need to build an adaptable people function paired with a technology roadmap that leads them bravely into this future.

Join this boardroom session and discuss:

  • New research on the 'real' trends determining where work is going
  • What role technology will play in supporting people in this future
  • How CHROs can shape the 'people technology' roadmap for their organizations

Executive boardrooms are intimate and interactive sessions designed to foster dynamic dialogue around a specific, strategic topic. These private, closed-door discussions encourage attendee participation and are limited to 15 attendees (seating priority is given to C-level executives). To reserve your seat, please contact Emily Allen at emily.allen@evanta.com.

10:40am - 11:00am  Networking Break

December 11, 2019 - mid-afternoon

11:00am - 11:50am  Breakout Session

HR’s Impact on a Business Turnaround

Larry Fultz headshot

Larry Fultz

Chief Human Capital Officer

Mattress Firm

Corporate success is driven by the senior leadership team, and if HR Leaders do their part, they guide the company through the transformation. No one knows this better than Larry Fultz. Join him as he explores the role HR played in the turnaround at Mattress Firm.

 In this session, learn about the transformational journey that:

  •  leveraged HR strategies to align talent to a significantly reduced store footprint
  • Introduced a new Improved talent assessment process
  • Drove productivity of the sales force through a redesigned Onboarding and Training and Development process
  • Reduced turnover and boosted quality of hiring through targeted sourcing and introduction of a Part-Time workforce

11:00am - 11:50am  Breakout Session

8 Levers of High-Performing Teams

Amy Powell headshot

Amy Powell

Vice President, Delivery

The Marcus Buckingham Company, an ADP company

The success of an organization depends on the success of its teams. HR leaders have the power to ignite engagement and fuel productivity by creating an extraordinary environment geared for success.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to act as a team coach who focuses on each individuals’ strengths
  • What drives high-performing teams
  • How to build these teams through the latest research and insights

11:00am - 11:50am  Executive Boardroom

Reimagining the Employee Experience

Margie Harris headshot

Margie Harris


Tellurian Inc.

Omar Reid headshot

Omar Reid


Harris Health System

Jeff Birk headshot

Jeff Birk

Manager of Speaking and Training

O.C. Tanner

With competition for talent at its peak, the employee experience is the new black. Organizations must rethink how they create workplace cultures where people choose to join, engage, and stay. Are your current efforts creating an employee experience people love? Do they attract the right people and inspire them to achieve? Gary will share new research-based insights and facilitate a group discussion about:

  • A new way to think about the employee experience
  • What employees value most in their decision to join, engage with, and stay at your organizations
  • Identify practices that help employees thrive at work

Executive boardrooms are intimate and interactive sessions designed to foster dynamic dialogue around a specific, strategic topic. These private, closed-door discussions encourage attendee participation and are limited to 15 attendees (seating priority is given to C-level executives). To reserve your seat, please contact Emily Allen at emily.allen@evanta.com.

11:00am - 11:50am  Executive Boardroom

Wellness for the Future of Work

Sue Netherton headshot

Sue Netherton

VP, People, Training & Development

Waste Connections

Sally Vardy headshot

Sally Vardy


Harris County Appraisal District

Marco Crespo headshot

Marco Crespo



Employee health and wellness is a critical driver of organizational transformation, not simply a component of employee compensation.

In this boardroom, you will discuss:

  • How wellness can be the key in transforming an organization
  • What benefits organizations are implementing to attract across the generations
  • How employee turnover and retention can be impacted by corporate wellness

Executive boardrooms are intimate and interactive sessions designed to foster dynamic dialogue around a specific, strategic topic. These private, closed-door discussions encourage attendee participation and are limited to 15 attendees (seating priority is given to C-level executives). To reserve your seat, please contact your event Program Manager.

11:50am - 12:00pm  Networking Break

12:00pm - 12:30pm  Lunch & Comments

Lunch and Interactive Discussion

In this networking lunch you have the opportunity to have relevant and topical conversations with your peers. The below questions are a guideline for you to start your table conversations.

  • HR and business partnership
    • How are you aligning the overall people strategy to business strategy/ priorities?
    • What HR metrics does your board or executive team care about most? How do you use these metrics to link back to business strategy?
    • How do you leverage talent management technology and tools to achieve key business outcomes?
  • Diversity and inclusion
    • In what ways are executives supporting the advancement of diverse groups?
    • How are you measuring the progress and improvement in your culture for diverse groups at your organization?
    • What are your most prominent diversity and inclusion challenges and successes?
  • Learning and development
    • How has learning and development evolved at your organization? What does the workforce need in the 21st Century for L&D?
    • In this era of on demand fulfillment, how are you bringing a Netflix-like, consumer approach to learning within your organization? 
    • How are you aligning your learning programs with your business needs?
  • Talent analytics
    • What are you hoping to solve for? What are your goals with analytics? What are the top things you’re hoping to get better at?
    • How are you utilizing analytics to better predict talent needs in the next six to twelve months?
    • What barriers are you facing as you try to move towards actionable analytics? How are you changing the culture of doubt around what HR can bring to the table on analytics?
  • Digital transformation
    • How are you keeping people at the center of delivery decisions?
    • Are you utilizing AI in HR optimization? How are you leveraging technology to allow for optimization of HR?
    • How have emerging technologies played into the gamification of key initiatives like recruitment or employee engagement in your HR program?

12:30pm - 1:00pm  Keynote

Connecting Culture and Brand to Drive Growth

Jeff Spiegel headshot

Jeff Spiegel

SVP & Chief Marketing Officer

KinderCare Learning Centers

Seven years ago, KinderCare Education started its cultural transformation and business turnaround with the intent to make a positive, lasting change for its people and the hardworking families they support. Since then, the company has experienced unprecedented business growth and, for the past three years, has been recognized by Gallup for setting the standard in creating an environment where employees are emotionally connected with each other and their work.

In this keynote, Jeff Spiegel, HR leader turned chief marketing officer will share:

  • How he unlocked a new and progressive brand purpose – Confidence for Life
  • The importance of a close partnership between HR, operations, and marketing
  • Best practices for cultivating a company culture that improves the customer experience

1:00pm - 1:20pm  Networking Break

1:20pm - 2:10pm  Breakout Session

Benchmark Belonging! An Interactive Experience

Vivian Mora headshot

Vivian Mora

VP, Human Resources

Houston Astros

Mayerland Harris headshot

Mayerland Harris

Group VP, Human Resources


Larry Perkins headshot

Larry Perkins

AVP, Talent & Diversity

MD Anderson Cancer Center

One of the best ways to check your assumptions in business is to know where you stand among your peers and allow them to challenge your assumptions. But even if you have a speed-dial full of trusted associates, this type of information sharing can be piecemeal and infrequent. This interactive session is your chance to:

  • Baseline your diversity program and explore context around progress
  • Compare inclusion initiatives with a cross-section of your peers
  • Walk away with actionable insights

1:20pm - 2:10pm  Breakout Session

Four Predictions for the Future of Recruiting

Richard Liddington headshot

Richard Liddington

Director, Talent Acquisition EMEA & LATAM


Recruitment today is not the same as it will be in five years. Recruiting teams will be called on to develop new skills, master new metrics, and adopt new tools.

In this session Richard Liddington will:

  • Recruiting will be mission critical
  • Your metrics will track outcomes, not just actions
  • Tech tools will unleash your team’s potential
  • Recruiters will be less like sales people and more like business people

1:20pm - 2:10pm  Executive Boardroom

Maximize Business Value With a Next-Generation Employee Experience

Phil Pirkle headshot

Phil Pirkle

EVP, Talent Mgmt.

United Supermarkets, LLC

Elizabeth Lieb Shuler headshot

Elizabeth Lieb Shuler

Director of Human Resources/Associate General Counsel


Jorge Marques headshot

Jorge Marques

Sr. Account Executive


With every initiative, HR executives have an opportunity to advance the business through delivering an exceptional employee experience. Powered by intelligent cross-functional digital workflows that mirror the modern consumer-style experience, organizations can unlock more productivity, and increase retention through a human-centered experience – all while positioning themselves as employers of choice.

Join this boardroom session and discuss:

  • Aligning overall people strategy to business outcomes
  • Using consumer grade technology to build truly meaningful employee experiences 
  • Keeping people at the center of all delivery decisions and enabling a self-service culture

Executive boardrooms are intimate and interactive sessions designed to foster dynamic dialogue around a specific, strategic topic. These private, closed-door discussions encourage attendee participation and are limited to 15 attendees (seating priority is given to C-level executives). To reserve your seat, please contact Emily Allen at emily.allen@evanta.com.

December 11, 2019 - afternoon

2:10pm - 2:30pm  Networking Break

2:30pm - 3:20pm  Breakout Session

HR Transformation – The Journey from Back-office to Business Driver

Paula Sacks headshot

Paula Sacks

SVP, CHRO, Communications & Sustainability Officer

ENGIE North America

With the risk of HR being left-out as the business transformed, it was critical for us to move from being a necessary support function to a sought-after valued business function.  

In this presentation Paula Sacks will discuss:

  • The 18-month and on-going HR transformation and its positive impact on the business

  • HR’s significantly elevated role in People, Talent, Organizational, and Culture efforts

  • Empowering an HR community to be stronger business leaders

2:30pm - 3:20pm  Breakout Session

Partnering With the CMO — Accelerating Your Talent Strategy

Katy Theroux headshot

Katy Theroux

Chief Human Resources Officer

Cornerstone Building Brands

Susan Selle headshot

Susan Selle

Chief Marketing Officer

Cornerstone Building Brands

Growth through mergers and acquisitions presents an opportunity for HR leaders to be innovative and at the forefront of business decisions. But, how can they partner with the executive team – particularly marketing – to apply time-tested research and practices on engaging customers and translate that to the workforce?

In this session, learn about:

  • Leveraging collaboration to build a business case for culture change
  • Creating a plan for integration and bolstering C-suite buy-in
  • Addressing challenges that stem from implementation

2:30pm - 3:20pm  Executive Boardroom

Taking a Planful Path to Digitalization

Denise Halaska headshot

Denise Halaska

Vice President, Human Resources


Jeff Williams headshot

Jeff Williams

EVP, Global Professional Services


Alvin Proctor headshot

Alvin Proctor

Vice President, Human Resources


As the cloud plays an increasingly critical role in enterprise strategy, HR leaders are challenged to look beyond emerging tools and embrace a more holistic approach to digital transformation. From fresh processes to new partnerships, digital efforts demand structured planning and an infusion into workforce culture.

Join this interactive session to explore:

  • Maximizing your business and employee outcomes
  • Getting the best out of your implementation – no matter where you are on your journey
  • Best practices from your peers' journey in to the cloud

Executive boardrooms are intimate and interactive sessions designed to foster dynamic dialogue around a specific, strategic topic. These private, closed-door discussions encourage attendee participation and are limited to 15 attendees (seating priority is given to C-level executives). To reserve your seat, please contact Emily Allen at emily.allen@evanta.com.

3:20pm - 3:40pm  Networking Break

3:40pm - 3:50pm  Closing Comments

3:50pm - 4:20pm  Keynote

Social Responsibility

Scott Ballard headshot

Scott Ballard

EVP Human Resources

Shell Oil Company

Corporate social responsibility may not be on your priority list as an HR leader, but it is an increasingly important part of the equation for your customers, workforce, and prospective employees. For a company’s environmental, fiscal, and social contributions to have an impact there must be compelling internal campaigns that embed corporate citizenship into strategic decision-making and alignment with business goals.

In this Keynote presentation, Scott Ballard, EVP Human Resources, Shell Oil Company will discuss:

  • Why community and social initiatives are critical to business strategy
  • HR’s role in driving social responsibility
  • How to activate employees around a sense of purpose and communicate your purpose

4:20pm - 5:00pm  Closing Reception & Prize Drawing


Your Community Partners

National Thought Leaders
Keynote Sponsor
National Sponsors
Key Partner

Houston CHRO Program Managers

For inquiries related to this event, please reach out to your dedicated program contacts.

Joey Freedman

Program Manager



Emily Allen

Content Manager