Maine’s 3 percent unemployment rate creates numerous obstacles for companies looking to hire. But one enduring trait of successful employers is creating a workplace where people want to be. Four experts will share their strategies for making their companies standout – from novel HR policies such as open-ended vacation time to vigorous mentoring programs.

On September 13, our business editor Carol Coultas will explore these challenges and find solutions with a panel of hiring and human resource specialists: Suzi Benoit, Director of HR at Wright-Ryan Construction, Johnna Major, president of Cornerstone HR, Hilary Rapkin, Senior VP, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary at WEX, and Cynthia Ring, Chief Human Resource Officer at Harvard Pilgrim.

This free, live event offers the opportunity for you to join in the conversation while connecting with people in the Greater Portland business community, while enjoying complimentary coffee and breakfast snacks.

On the panel

MODERATOR: Carol Coultas, Business Editor

Suzanne Benoit, LCSW, SPHR, Director of Human Resources, Wright-Ryan Construction
Suzi joined Wright-Ryan Construction as Director of Human Resources in 2012 after a brief consulting assignment. With over 30 years of senior leadership experience, she brings business management along with deep human resource expertise to her assignment. Suzi is the Social Media Vice President and board member of the Human Resource Association of Southern Maine. She speaks about workplace culture to organizations throughout New England and writes a management blog for business leaders.

Johnna Major, President, Cornerstone HR
Before founding her own recruitment and HR consulting firm, Major hired talent and implemented programs at companies including Sebago, Inc., Cole Haan, and Martin’s Point Health Care. Major specializes in finding talent for growing companies, organizational design and role definition, and providing guidance on general HR issues. She has also worked in non-profit executive management with the Maine and Connecticut Chapters of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and is currently on the board of Maine Boys to Men.

Hilary Rapkin, Senior VP, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, WEX
Hilary Rapkin has been with WEX for over 20 years. She oversees the company’s global legal, regulatory compliance, government affairs, and human resources functions. Under Rapkin, WEX instituted an additional six-week paid parental leave for employees of all genders, for both the birth or adoption of a child. Rapkin is a co-chair of the Advisory Committee to the Maine Center for Graduate Professional Studies and a member of the Board of Visitors for the University of Maine School of Law.

Cynthia Ring, Chief Human Resources Officer, Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare
Cynthia Ring joined Harvard Pilgrim in 2015 after more than 20 years of experience in the health care industry. At Harvard Pilgrim, Ring oversees all aspects of human resources, from talent acquisition and compensation to employee wellness, learning and development. Earlier this year, the company announced that performance reviews would be replaced with a coaching program and that the majority of their employees would receive unlimited time off.


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