Bloomington-Normal Human Resource Council
Affillate of the Society for Human Resource Management
Bloomington, IL

Board of Directors

We are pleased to introduce the 2019 Bloomington-Normal Human Resource Council Board of Directors. To contact a BNHRC board member via email, click on their position title. We do have a few open Board positions, noted below. If you are interested in joining the BNHRC Board, please contact our chapter President to learn more!


Erin DeKnecht, PHR, SHRM-CP

COUNTRY Financial

Erin is a Senior Talent Development Analyst at COUNTRY Financial. She works on a variety of projects and programs designed to onboard and develop employees in all stages of their careers. Erin has a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural and Consumer Economics from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and obtained a master’s degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She obtained her Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification in 2012 and her SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification in 2015. Erin has been a board member of BNHRC since June 2016, previously serving as Secretary and President-Elect.




Past President 

Tara Desmond

Core 3

Tara is currently the Marketing Director at Core 3 handling the creation and implementation of the company’s marketing strategies. Previously she worked as a marketing director at IPI Wealth Management where she earned her series 7 license. Prior to that she worked at COUNTRY Financial in several HR roles for over 10 years. Tara began serving on the BNHRC Board in 2014. She has served in the Programming, Technology, President-Elect and President roles. Tara graduated from SIUC in 2005 with a specialization in Mass Communications/Advertising Integrated Marketing Communications and in 2016 was awarded the Leadership Connection award.


Lucas Hellmer, SHRM-SCP, SPHR

Farnsworth Group

Lucas Hellmer is a Compensation & Benefits Manager for Farnsworth Group. Lucas has been a BNHRC member since 2005, and began his involvement with the BNHRC Board in 2005. Since that time, Lucas has held several BNHRC board positions including President, Treasurer, Programming, Webmaster, and Compensation survey chair. Lucas also served on the Illinois SHRM board and on the American Council of Engineering Companies of Illinois statewide HR Committee. Lucas earned a Bachelors in HR Management and Master’s in Business Administration from Illinois State University. In 2012, Lucas was awarded the Early Career Achievement Award from Illinois State University and the Pantagraph’s 20 under 40 award in 2016. He holds both the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification and the SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) certification.


Ashley Cunningham, SHRM-CP

Four Seasons

Ashley is the Human Resources Manager at Four Seasons Health Club. She began her role in 2016 where she serves as part of the Management team with focus areas in benefits and compensation, employee relations, recruiting, compliance and managing employee performance. Prior to that, she spent almost 10 years at Commerce Bank as a Talent Acquisition Specialist focusing on recruiting, compliance and training. Ashley earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Illinois State University in 2002. She obtained the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification in 2018. Ashley has been a member of BNHRC since 2017.

Co-Director of Programming 

Becky Nelson, SHRM-CP


Becky Nelson recently joined GROWMARK, Inc. as a Compensation Analyst.  She has eleven years’ experience as a human resource professional in varying roles.  She has served as a recruiter for John Hancock, trainer for HGS and Illinois State University, Facilities Services Department as well as generalist roles with OSF Healthcare and four years as the Senior Director of Human Resources for Hearts at Home. Becky graduated from Bradley University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Master’s Degree in Leadership in Human Service Administration. Becky obtained the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification and joined the BNHRC board in 2018.

Co-Director of Programming


Co-Director of Membership

Andee Radliff

Illinois State University

Andee Radliff is the Assistant Director for Employer Relations in the Career Center at Illinois State University (ISU). She has worked in the Human Resources field in different capacities including training, employee relations, recruitment, employee development, benefits, and marketing since 2001; and has previously worked as the Talent Management Team Lead, Benefits Officer, and Employment Consultant at ISU. Andee has degrees in Psychology, Sociology, and Women’s & Gender Studies all from Illinois State University. Andee has been a member of BNHRC since 2008 and has held several positions on the BNHRC Board, including President, Membership Director, Technology Director, and Secretary.

Co-Director of Membership 

Monica Wilks, SHRM-SCP

McLean County School District Unit 5

Monica Wilks is the Human Resources Coordinator at McLean County School District Unit 5. She has been a member of the Bloomington/Normal community for over 20 years and a member of the HR community for over 9 years. She began her membership with SHRM in 2008 and joined BNHRC in 2014. Prior to Unit 5, Monica was the HR Director for YWCA, HR Manager at Four Seasons Association, an Onboarding Specialist for Accenture Inc. and the Director of Talent Acquisition for Baker Hughes Inc. She is a graduate of Illinois State University with a Master of Science in Public Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science. In 2016 she was named as a Distinguished Alumni of Illinois State University and the Department of Politics & Government and in 2018 she earned her SHRM-SCP.

Co-Director of Membership 

Jennifer Hanna, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

Westminster Village


Jennifer Hanna is the Director of Human Resources at Westminster Village where she handles all aspects of human resources for the organization. She has been there since 2013. Prior to Westminster she worked at the Town of Normal in Human Resources for 15 years. Jennifer has her bachelors and master’s degrees in Human Resources Management. She received her PHR in 1999, her SPHR in 2008 and her SHRM-SCP in 2015. Jennifer has served on BNHRC board since January 2016 including the program Co-Director.

Director of Marketing & Technology

Taylor Ingram, SHRM-CP

COUNTRY Financial

Taylor Ingram is an HR Generalist at COUNTRY Financial where she is involved with recruiting, employee relations, and many HR-related projects. Previously, Taylor was a College Relations Coordinator and Internship Program Manager at COUNTRY. Taylor earned a Bachelors degree in Communication with a Business minor in 2013 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She began involvement with BNHRC while still in school as an Employment intern at COUNTRY and has been a member since 2014. She joined the BNHRC board in 2017 as Communication & Public Relations Director. Taylor obtained the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification in 2018.

Social Media Co-Chair

Kerry Keller, PHR, SHRM-CP

State Farm

Kerry Keller is a Talent Management Analyst at State Farm supporting succession planning and talent for the organization. Kerry began working at State Farm in 2012 with prior experience at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Human Resources. Kerry is an Illinois State University alum, having received both her Master of Business Administration and Bachelor’s degrees from ISU. She earned the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification in 2009 and the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) certification in 2015. Kerry has been a member of BNHRC since 2008 and began serving on the BNHRC Board in 2012. She has served in the Membership, Secretary, President-Elect and President roles.

Director of Student Chapter Affairs

Jill Smith

Illinois State University

Jill is an Employment Consultant for Human Resources at Illinois State University. Jill creates partnerships with campus departments in areas of employment, compensation, classification, and employee relations. She began working at the University in 2008, before transitioning to Human Resources in 2010 where she held multiple positions in employment and gaining expertise in civil service employment. She graduated from Illinois State University in 2008 with a degree in Organizational Leadership. She has been a BNHRC member since 2013.

Director of Certification 

Kacy Wickenhauser, SPHR

Corn Belt Energy

Kacy Wickenhauser is Vice President of Utility Services at Corn Belt Energy in Bloomington, where she’s worked since 2010. In addition to overseeing Communications, Accounting/Finance, Marketing and Member Services she personally handles all HR functions including benefits administration, compensation, labor relations, worker’s compensation, conflict resolution and staffing for the 85-employee electric cooperative with offices in Bloomington and Princeton, IL. She’s served on the BNHRC Executive Board from 2010-2013 as Governmental Affairs Chair, from 2013-2014 as Program Chair, from 2014-2015 as SHRM Foundation & Certification Director. And now currently serves as Certification Director. Kacy has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and her MBA with an HR Concentration. She became PHR certified in 2010 and obtained her SPHR in 2015.

Director of SHRM Foundation 

Michelle Trunnell

People Ready

Michelle Trunnell is the Branch Manager of People Ready, (formerly Labor Ready) in Normal, IL. She has been with the company since 2003. She oversees the branch operations as well as sales, service and recruiting. She joined BNHRC in 2015, shortly thereafter, applied for a board opening and is now the SHRM Foundation Director. She is the current President of Professional Referral Group that she has been a part of since 2009 and was recently recruited to join the Heartland Community College Alumni Board. 

Director of Legislative & Governmental Affairs

Veronica ManzellaSPHR, SHRM-SCP

The Baby Fold


Veronica Manzella, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is the Vice President of Human Resources at The Baby Fold since 2008. She has a Master's degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and has 30 years of HR related experience focusing on training, benefits, compensation, recruitment, employee relations, and pre-employment testing. Veronica has held various HR management positions, in addition to her 16 years of experience (both full and part-time) as an Industrial/Organizational Consultant; primarily concentrating on employee selection and assessment. Before joining The Baby Fold, she was employed by State Farm in the Enterprise Recruiting and Retention Department. Veronica also worked for RUSH Presbyterian St. Luke's Medical Center where she played a key role in both the merger between RUSH and Prudential and then the acquisition of Rush Prudential by WellPoint. She is a certified instructor through Achieve Global, Pritchett and Associates, DDI, and Time Design on a variety of topics. Veronica is on the Board for Habitat for Humanity and serves as a reviewer for the annual SIOP (Society of Industrial/Organizational Psychology) conference. She is actively involved in SHRM (Society of Human Resource Management) and previously served on the local SHRM chapter board, BNHRC (Bloomington-Normal Human Resource Council) as the Certification Director, President-Elect, President, and Past President and is now currently serving as the Legislative/Governmental Affairs Director.

Director of Workforce Readiness 

Sam Lewis, CSP


Sam Lewis and his wife Terri are the owners of Pridestaff, a staffing and recruiting agency located in Bloomington Normal. He is also an HR consultant for small businesses. In his career, Sam has been an HR manager, a factory manager, a GM, and the VP of Engineering with responsibility for eight manufacturing plants across the U.S. He has been in leadership and management roles for over 30 years. Sam is a Certified Staffing Professional (CSP) through the American Staffing Association. He is very active in the community. He serves on the board of directors for the Work Force Investment Act for the state of Illinois. He is a curriculum advisor for Heartland Community College. He is also a board member for Marcfirst. Sam began serving on the BNHRC Board in 2012 as a Membership Co-chair.

Diversity Co-Chair

Lisa Mason, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

Illinois State University

Lisa Mason is the Director of Executive Search Services at Illinois State University supporting executive level searches, dual career programming, and enhancing the diversity and inclusivity of search practices. Lisa earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Illinois State University and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Illinois at Springfield. She began working at Illinois State in 2013, bringing with her 13 years of experience in both public and private sectors. She earned certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and a SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM – SCP) in 2014. Lisa joined BNHRC in 2015 and began serving on the BNHRC Board in 2018.  

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