SHRM Young Professional Advisory Council



The Young Professional Advisory Council (YPAC) serves the interests of SHRM Young Professional members and provides guidance on building a community for the next generation of HR leadership through social media, membership and networking activities.

2019 Members

Amanda Brunson
HR Generalist
RW Block Consulting, Inc.
Orlando, FL

Amanda Brunson is employed as an HR Generalist by Radixx International in Orlando, FL. Amanda has been an active volunteer with SHRM since 2014 in many capacities. She's held several leadership positions including Secretary, President, and Student Chapter Advisor for the Rollins College SHRM Student Chapter. She is on the Board of Directors for the Greater Orlando SHRM Chapter. Her roles have included Foundation Director, Social Media Director, and is currently serving as Communications and Marketing Director. Amanda also joined the SHRM Young Professional Advisory Council (YPAC) in 2018 and is enthusiastic about her continued involvement in 2019. 

Amanda received her Master in Human Resources Degree from Rollins College in May 2016. She holds an Advanced Leadership and Management Certificate from West Virginia University at Parkersburg. Most recently, Amanda obtained her SHRM-CP certification in January 2018.

Amanda is passionate about advocating for the Future of HR. She does this by sharing her knowledge and experience to aid others in attaining their goals. Amanda co-founded a weekly blog called "The Future of HR" where she writes to make a difference, influence change, and support others. Amanda is also a regular contributor on the SHRM blog; she has a monthly blog called "#AskAmanda" where she answers "How To" questions for young professionals.

Amanda currently resides in Mount Dora, Florida and enjoys bowling, scrapbooking, and visiting Walt Disney World in her spare time.

Please connect with her on LinkedIn and on Twitter @TheHRPanda.

Brad Dalton picture.jpg

Brad Dalton
Director of Talent Management
Cisco Meraki
San Francisco, CA

Brad Dalton is the Director of Talent Management at Cisco Meraki in San Francisco and has a background in Human Resources, Talent Management, Organization Development, and financial and operations leadership. His career has included experience in workforce planning, recruiting, talent brand, leadership development, internal mobility, coaching, onboarding, consulting, and program management. Brad obtained his Bachelor's degree in Management from the University of Florida and his Master's in International Business with an MBA exchange program from the Hong Kong University of Science & Technology. He's worked for organizations such as Wells Fargo, Verizon Wireless, Aramark, and the City & County of Denver before transitioning to lead Talent Management for the fastest growing cloud-managed tech company in the world. Brad is passionate about aligning business needs with people strategy and making work better for everyone. With family extending from South Africa to Japan, Brad also likes to travel as much as possible in his free time.

Kayla Despres picture2.pngKayla Despres
Senior HR Business Partner
Bilfinger Westcon, Inc.
Bismarck, ND

In her current role, Kayla Despres is a strategic and innovative Senior HR Business Partner, who translates business vision into HR initiatives that improve performance, profitability, growth, and employee engagement. She coordinates change management for HR initiatives, organizational development, HRIS technology, and corporate transformations using complete generalist HR techniques for both turnaround and high-growth construction organization. She develops and launches programs to build a high-performance workforce and develop future leaders. An empowering leader who supports the company with a unique perspective and appreciation that human capital is every organization's greatest asset. Kayla thrives on tough challenges and translates visions and strategies into actionable, value-added goals.

Kayla is a graduate of the University of North Dakota and University of Mary, holding a B.A in Political Science and Public Administration, along with a MBA with emphasis in Human Resources. She joined SHRM in April 2014, earned her Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification in May 2014, and earned her SHRM-Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification in January 2015.

Kayla resides in Bismarck, ND where she has been a member of the Bismarck-Mandan Young Professional Network since 2014 and currently is a co-lead for the Professional Development team. She also is a member of the local chapter Central Dakota Human Resource Association (CDHRA). She volunteers as a Junior Achievement mentor and YMCA volleyball coach. She is excited to add being a member of the 2018 YPAC to this list and is looking forward to positively influencing the next generation of HR leaders.

Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Granger Crystal.jpgCrystal Granger
Guest Relations Manager
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Portland
Portland, OR

After graduating from Portland State University in 2016 with a double major in Human Resources and Management & Leadership I was offered an internship to put my education into practice. The internship turned into a full-time position opening my eyes for the first time to the not for profit sector. After having hands on experience with the recruitment process, benefits, performance management, and everything in between I decided to try my hand at managing. I'm now a Guest Relations Manager in the hospitality field learning the front end of all of the work I provide support for over the last two years.

Schyler Houck picture.pngSchyler Houck
Director of Human Resources
Saratoga Casino Hotel
Saratoga Springs, NY

Schyler is the Director of Human Resources and Labor Relations at the Saratoga Casino Hotel where he leads the HR team in driving employee and guest relations.  Schyler Houck has a MBA from Clarkson University and a BS in Marketing and Management from Siena College.  He is certified as a Senior Professional of Human Resources (SPHR) through HRCI and SHRM-SCP through the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).  Schyler has been recognized as a leader within his profession and was selected as one of the "Top 30 Under 30 HR Professionals" by SHRM in 2016.  Schyler is involved in various organizations within the community and currently serves as President of the Capital Region Association for Talent Development, member of the Capital Region Human Resource Association's Workforce Readiness Committee and on the Capital Region Chamber of Commerce's Executive Mentorship Committee.  Schyler is dedicated to progressing the profession and addressing the needs of the HR community and is currently serving SHRM as a second-year member of the SHRM Young Professional Advisory Council.

Lina Le.jpgLina Le
HR Manager
Y. Hata & Co., Limited
Honolulu, HI

Lina Le was born and raised in Hawaii. Her parents are first generation immigrants from Vietnam and decided to call Hawaii their home for the last 30 years. Lina started her HR career in Benefits, Compensation, and Retirement. She's worked in a variety of industries including hospitality, airline, education, and food distribution. Along the way, she's been a part of system integrations, outsourcing, mergers and acquisitions and companywide reorganizations.

Lina joined Y. Hata & Co., Limited, Hawaii's oldest and largest locally owned food distributor in 2015 and now serves as the HR Manager overseeing all HR and safety. In this role, Lina constantly seeks to include the employee's experience into perspective when providing HR solutions.

In addition, Lina is involved with her local SHRM chapter, SHRM Hawaii, and is on their first Young Professionals Committee that kicked off in summer of 2016. She also supports the local college chapter, SHRM Aloha. Lina has been volunteering with the Hawaii People's Fund, a local nonprofit for social justice, for the past 10 years in roles including board member, grant making committee co-chair, and facilitator.

Lina earned both her Master's and Bachelor's degree from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. In addition, she has earned both the SHRM-SCP and SHRM-CP Certifications.

Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Andrew Marcotte picture.jpgAndrew Marcotte
HR Business Partner
Blain's Farm and Fleet
Janesville, WI

Andrew is currently an HR Business Partner at Blain's Farm and Fleet, a specialty discount retailer with 40 locations throughout Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, and Michigan. In this role, Andrew directly supports store operations and store management teams across all 40 locations. This enterprise role allows for a strategic partnership with store management teams to deliver tactical HR support on all HR processes, programs, and practices.

Andrew graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Olivet Nazarene University in May 2016, where he was influential in launching their SHRM student chapter and served as President for two years. Soon after graduation, Andrew earned his SHRM- Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification.

Andrew is an advocate for helping young professionals find their passions. Over the past several years, Andrew has volunteered in numerous positions with local SHRM chapters and state councils, most recently as a Board Ambassador with his local SHRM chapter, Blackhawk Human Resources Association.

When not at work, Andrew enjoys spending time with his 13-month-old son Michael and wife Sara. He also enjoys spending time with his 17 nieces and nephews.

Feel free to reach out to Andrew directly on LinkedIn.

Alexander Pullen picture.jpgAlexander C. Pullen, SHRM-SCP
HR Manager
The George Washington University
Washington, DC

A native of Chicago, Illinois, Alexander brings with him almost eight years of experience in Compliance and in Human Resources. Alexander holds a B.A. from Howard University, an M.A. in Human Resource Management from The Catholic University of America and is currently pursuing a Doctor of Education in the Human & Organizational Learning at GW. His research interests include organizational resilience and transformational leadership.  Alexander is not only well versed in HR regulations, standards, and best practices but also has and applies his passion for process improvement and organizational development to his work within and outside of the workplace. Alexander is a proud life member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. 

Alexander loves networking with other HR professionals. Feel free to connect with Alexander on LinkedIn.

Jazzmine Woodard picture.pngJazzmine Woodard
Analyst II, HR Advisory Services
Enbridge Inc.
Houston, TX

Jazzmine holds and Master of Science in Human Resource Management from Mays Business School at Texas A&M University and four years of HR experience in Diversity, Affirmative Action, Compliance, and Employee Relations. She is currently active in her local SHRM chapter, HR Houston, on the University Liaison and HR Ambassadors committees. Jazzmine is currently preparing to sit for the SHRM-SCP exam and this is her second year serving on the Young Professionals Advisory Council.


Job Finder

Find an HR Job Near You
Search Jobs


HR Daily Newsletter

News, trends and analysis, as well as breaking news alerts, to help HR professionals do their jobs better each business day.