64th Annual HRM Conference Speakers

Stewart Alvis - Associate, Maynard, Cooper, & Gale

Stewart Alvis pictureStewart Alvis, Associate with Maynard Cooper and Gale's general litigation and white collar defense and investigations practice groups, has experience dealing with government investigations across and wide range of industries, including health care, government contractors, national security, education, and insurance.

Stewart received a B.A. in History and Political Science, summa cum laude, from The University of Alabama and his J.D., summa cum laude, from Cumberland School of Law.




Scott Baker - Vice President People, Command Alkon

Scott Baker pictureScott Baker is the Vice President People at Command Alkon and has over 25 years' experience in Human Resources. He is a strategic executive leader with an innovative and business-oriented mindset in all facets of Human Resources spanning hi-tech, service, and manufacturing industries. His work experience includes Ford, General Electric, Microsoft, and Cintas.

Scott has a track record of building top-performing HR Teams aligned with the business. He is a co-author of some modules for the Global HR Practitioner Handbook (Global Immersion Press) and has presented on HR Analytics, Reinventing Performance Reviews, and Innovative HR Technologies at HR conferences. 

He has a Master's Degree in HR from Michigan State University and is certified as a Global HR Professional (GPHR) by the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) and Associate Certified Coach (ACC) by the International Coach Federation (ICF).


Erica Williamson Barnes - Shareholder, Maynard, Cooper, & Gale

Erica Williamson Barnes photoErica is a shareholder in the firm's White Collar Defense and Investigations section and a member of the General Litigation Practice Group.

She focuses her practice on assisting individuals and entities in connection with state and federal criminal matters, conducting internal investigations, litigating and resolving false claims act proceedings, anti-corruption and anti-fraud compliance, and civil litigation involving a criminal or governmental component. Erica also has experience in a wide variety of commercial litigation matters and has represented defendants in individual and class actions involving contract, employment, shareholder, and securities claims.

Erica recently rejoined the firm after serving for four years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Alabama. As an AUSA, Erica worked with a multitude of federal agencies and state and local task forces to prosecute white collar matters involving bank, wire, and mail fraud, healthcare fraud, access device fraud, benefits fraud, tax fraud, securities fraud, elder financial exploitation, cyber intrusion, and money laundering. Erica has also prosecuted cases involving child exploitation, narcotics, firearms, and immigration offenses.

Erica has experience at all levels of the criminal process and has tried cases to a jury in state and federal court. Prior to joining Maynard Cooper, Erica served as a Special Prosecutor in the DeKalb County District Attorney's office in Atlanta and served as a law clerk to the late Honorable Owen Forrester in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

Jacqueline Brito - Founder and CEO, Recycle Regrets, LLC

Brito HeadshotJacqueline "Jackie" Brito, founder and CEO of Recycle Regrets®, a coaching and consulting practice whose mission is to help individuals transition from crisis to wellbeing, is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) through the International Coach Federation, Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) through the Society for Human Resource Management, and Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR), through the Human Resource Certification Institute. Jackie teaches human resources courses in the MBA and Masters of Human Resources programs at the Rollins College Crummer Graduate School of Business.





Jim Cavale - CEO, INFLCR

Jim Cavale pictureJim grew up in Syracuse, New York, before transferring to the University of Montevallo to finish his college baseball career. At UM, Jim founded his first company, NextSpex, a video streaming service for small college athletics brands. After a successful exit from NextSpex, Jim Co-Founded Iron Tribe Franchise, which took local gym Iron Tribe Fitness, from one gym to 47 gyms across the country from Seattle to Miami. During his time as President, Iron Tribe was Inc. 5000 three straight years, as one of America's Fastest Growing private companies.

Jim has two startups based in Innovation Depot, in the GLOW beauty on demand app, which he co-founded with his wife Yazmin who serves as CEO, and Influencer (INFLCR), an influencer marketing CRM that empowers brands to store, track and deliver their content messaging to their network of influencers who can re-share this content on their personal social media channels. 

Jim served as an initial advisor for current Mayor Randall Woodfin during his 2017 election campaign and serves as Chairman for the Aspire Movement, a local ministry pairing adult mentors with fatherless children in the city of Birmingham. 

Jim has three children with his wife Yazmin. They live in Ross Bridge.

Stephen Davis II - Attorney, Shareholder, Maynard, Cooper, & Gale

Davis pictureStephen Davis is a Shareholder and member of Maynard Cooper's Labor & Employment and Immigration practice groups. He is an experienced attorney who devotes his practice to assisting companies regarding all phases of their foreign national workforce. His talents in this area have earned him recognition by both Alabama Super Lawyers and Mid-South Super Lawyers.

Stephen provides immigration advice and representation to companies and professionals in numerous industries, including hospitality, manufacturing, information technology, financial services, government contracting, education, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology. He partners with his clients on an ongoing basis to keep them apprised of deadlines and immigration reform in order to keep them compliant with current laws and regulations.

He helps his clients obtain temporary and permanent work authorization for foreign nationals, including managers and executives, temporary non-agricultural workers, college professors and instructors, workers with specialized knowledge, physicians, students, and interns. By evaluating each employee's credentials and work intentions, and considering all applicable visa classifications, Stephen devises successful strategies for entry and stay in the United States.

Stephen also represents individuals with family-based immigration needs. This includes petitioning for permanent resident status for immediate family members of U.S. citizens and preparing such family members for consular processing at the appropriate U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Ronald Dulek, PhD - John R. Miller Professor of Management, The University of Alabama

Dulek pictureRonald Dulek, PhD, is the John R. Miller Professor of Management at the University of Alabama. Ron's teaching and research interests focus on two areas: Management Communications and Business Strategy. He served seventeen years as Head of the Management and Marketing Department.

Ron is a dedicated teacher who has won numerous teaching awards, including the National Alumni Association's Outstanding Commitment to Teaching Award, the Athletic Department's Faculty Member of the Year Award, and selection as the first recipient of the University of Alabama's "Last Lecture" series.

Academically, Ron has co-authored seven books and published more than 50 refereed journal articles. In 2007, the International Association for Business Communication awarded Ron its highest research distinction: the Kitty O. Locker Award for Outstanding Research.

Companies with which Ron has worked extensively in the areas of business strategy and managerial communication include: Adtran, Bell South, Chevron, Energen, IBM, Kimberly Clarke, Mercedes Benz International, Procter and Gamble, Protective Life, Stora Enso and Volvo. During the last five years he has delivered academic and business lectures in Antwerp, Belgium; Arusha, Tanzania; Dresden, Germany; Dublin, Ireland; Goethenburg, Sweden; Helsinki, Finland; Johannesburg and Pretoria, South Africa; Riga, Latvia; Seoul, South Korea; Shanghai, China; Singapore; and Windhoek, Nambia.

Ron currently serves on various local, state, and national boards. He and his wife, Sally, reside ten months a year in Tuscaloosa, Alabama and two months a year in Sabie Park, Mpumalanga, South Africa.

Jennifer Geist - Senior Manager, Employee Engagement and Development, Teledyne Brown Engineering

jennifer geist photoJennifer Geist has more than 20 years of experience in the employee engagement and health promotion industry. She currently serves as the Senior Manager for Employee Engagement and Development for Teledyne Brown Engineering in Huntsville, Alabama, where she leads the planning, development, execution and management of employee engagement, and developing programs, including: a nationally-recognized wellness program, employee development programs, and the educational assistance program in collaboration with Teledyne Brown Engineering leadership, to ensure initiatives are in line with the strategic priorities, with a focus on improving culture and employee engagement.

Prior to this role, Jennifer served as the Wellness Manager at Teledyne Brown, where she was responsible for all areas of employee health and wellness for the company's 900 employees throughout the U.S. In 2007, Teledyne Brown received the honor of being named one of the healthiest workplaces in America. The Wellness Council of  America (WELCOA) awarded Teledyne Brown the Gold Well Workplace Award for successfully building a comprehensive worksite wellness program and demonstrating and documenting concrete outcomes. Since 2007, Teledyne Brown has received 4 more national awards for its wellness program under Jennifer's leadership: (1) Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award from the American Psychological Association, (2) Company of Excellence Award from the American Cancer Society, (3) Fit Friendly Award from the American Heart Association and (4) CEO Cancer Gold Standard Accreditation.

Prior to joining Teledyne Brown, Jennifer served as the Wellness Coordinator for Huntsville Hospital Corporate Wellness Services (formerly Occupational Health Group), where she was responsible for all operations of a corporate wellness services department. She coordinated and provided health screenings, educational classes, and wellness programs to over 450 companies in North America.

 Jennifer received her Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire. Her Master of Science degree in Behavior Analysis and Therapy was received from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

Mitchell Greggs - Attorney, Maynard, Cooper, & Gale

Mitchell Greggs pictureMitchell Greggs is an Associate and member of the Labor and Employment and Intellectual Property & Technology Practice Groups at Maynard Cooper. He also has an extensive background in Business and General Litigation.

His significant litigation experience includes work in the areas of non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, executive severance agreement disputes, intellectual property matters, FLSA matters, workers' compensation disputes, business torts and contract disputes and product liability actions. His trial experience includes litigating non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, contract disputes, product liability claims and civil rights matters in both state and federal courts in Alabama.

Super Lawyers has recognized Mitchell as a "Rising Star" in the areas of Business Litigation and Employment & Labor Law. Mitchell received his J.D. cum laude from Washington & Lee University. He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from The University of Alabama.

Jimese Harkley - Partner, Divercity Solutions

Some Jimese Harkley photopeople are destined to create relationships and never meet a stranger. From an early age, Jimese has embraced her social talents and turned them into a fulfilling career helping people in the credit union industry.

Jimese graduated from Jacksonville State University in 2006, majoring in Communication with a minor in Marketing. She also graduated from the Birmingham School of Law in 2015, receiving her Juris Doctorate.

Her credit union career started 13 years ago, working on the front-lines for America's First Federal Credit Union. Over the course of her credit union career she served as a teller, branch specialist, indirect lending specialist, community relations liaison, and lastly as philanthropy and community relations manager. Serving the members and the community allowed her to exercise her passion for fostering relationships, recognizing differences, and driving change. She later transferred these skills to work for the Filene Research Institute.

In 2015, Jimese was named the CUES Next Top Credit Union Executive. Her "Community First" campaign focused on the importance of implementing a strategic philanthropy program and connecting to the issues in the community beyond the residents financial lives. This program increased employee awareness of corporate citizenship, increased volunteer hours for America's First FCU, and increased the financial contributions, without increasing the budget for corporate donations.

Jess Herbst - Planning Commissioner, New Hope, Texas

Herbst photoJess Helene Herbst is currently a planning commissioner for the town of New Hope, Texas and was formerly the mayor, mayor pro tem, road commissioner and alderman beginning in 2003. She is also a contract technical consultant for the city of Plano, Texas, serves on the national C4 board of Trans United, a member of the Equality Texas regional steering committee and founding member of One Texas Resistance, a multi-organizational advocacy group formed to monitor and influence Texas Legislation.

Jess was the first openly transgender elected official in the state of Texas and their first Transgender Mayor.

Jess is a recent graduate of The Executive Leadership in State and Local Officials course at Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge and the recipient of the Victory Institutes Bohnett fellowship.

Jess has been a strong advocate of LGBTQ rights and has testified before several Texas State House and Senate committees.


John Holmes III - Shareholder, Maynard, Cooper & Gale

John Holmes pictureJohn Holmes is the Chair of Maynard Cooper's Labor and Employment Practice. He represents clients in all facets of labor and employment law, including defending cases arising under the FMLA, the FLSA, Title VII, the ADEA, the ADA, federal health and safety laws, as well as state non-compete, tort, and workers' compensation laws. He has been recognized by Chambers, The Best Lawyers in America, Mid-South Super Lawyers, and was named to the Benchmark Litigation 2016 and 2017 "Under 40 Hot List". John is licensed in Alabama and Texas and is a frequent speaker on employment law issues.





Matt Hottle - Founder and CEO, Redhawk

Matt Hottle pictureMatt Hottle is the co-founder of Redhawk Venture Group, a Birmingham-based company with consulting, advisory and training practices. Redhawk provides process design and implementation services across various business disciplines. Matt is also a managing partner of Redhawk Advisory, managing the $25 million Alabama Futures Fund.

Before starting Redhawk, Matt founded a multi-million dollar startup, grew a service business from $65 million to $100 million in just two years and ran a $900 million sales team for a Fortune 500 telecom company. 




Devin C. Hughes - Chief Inspirational Officer, Devin C. Hughes, LLC

Hughes HeadshotDevin C. Hughes, author of 17 books, is a highly sought after international speaker, happiness muse, mindfulness trainer & executive coach who speaks to a variety of leaders, groups, organizations, and teams who have a desire to break down enterprise-wide culture barriers, improve personal/organizational performance and enhance communication through greater self-awareness and understanding of one another. His approach draws from the science of positive psychology, positive organizational research, appreciative inquiry, neuroscience, mindset and mindfulness.





 Stephanie Mays - Attorney and Shareholder, Maynard, Cooper & Gale

Stephanie Mays pictureStephanie is a Shareholder and member of Maynard Cooper's Labor & Employment Practice. She has experience defending public and private employers ranging from large manufacturers to municipalities, poultry processing facilities, health care providers, large retail companies, post-secondary colleges and small businesses. She represents clients in litigation federal agency proceedings and provides training, day-to-day legal advice and pragmatic solutions that are tailored to meet her clients' needs.

Stephanie's practice consists of representing management and advising clients in all aspects of the employment relationship, including EEOC charges and cases arising under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act. She also assists clients in drafting employment policies and employee handbooks and conducting internal investigations.

Among her experience in both federal and state courts, Stephanie defended a complex eight-week jury trial in federal district court in which the jury awarded less than 3% of the damages sought. She also tried a three-week case in Bessemer, Alabama Circuit Court, with a jury verdict returned in favor of the defendant, her client.

Stephanie is recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© for Litigation: Labor and Employment, and she was recognized by the Birmingham Business Journal as a 2017 "Under 40 Hot List", an elite accolade honoring the achievements of the nation's most accomplished legal partners who are 40 years old or younger. In 2013, she was recognized on the inaugural Southern Region Lawyers of Color Hot List, and she has been listed in Super Lawyers every year since 2013. Stephanie was also selected to participate in the Alabama State Bar Leadership FOrum for 2013-2014.

Bryance Metheny - Partner, Burr Forman, LLP

Metheny PictureBryance is Chair of the firm's Labor and Employment practice group. He focuses his practice on representing employers and management in all aspects of Labor & Employment law. He defends employers in litigation in both state and federal courts and before state and federal administrative agencies.

Bryance also advises and assists employers in developing employment policies and procedures to govern the workplace. His practice embraces all matters involving employees in the workplace, including wage and hour issues, wrongful discharge, sexual harassment, invasion of privacy, employment discrimination and labor relations. Bryance has extensive experience handling litigation in all these areas, in addition to allegations of violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, enforcement of non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, OSHA violations, and matters within the jurisdiction of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs. He has represented employers in matters before the National Labor Relations Board and in labor negotiations. Bryance has defended nationwide complex employment-related class actions and lawsuits throughout the United States and handled appeals to the Supreme Court of Alabama and United States Courts of Appeals.

Bryance lectures extensively throughout the Southeast on matters involving employment law. He has written numerous articles and published papers on the Fair Labor Standards Act, arbitration, the interrelationship between the ADA, FMLA and workers' compensation laws and other employment discrimination topics. He provides on-site training to employers and conducts employment-related audits of personnel practices and procedures. 

Trudi Mullins - Corporate Trainer and Culture Champion

Trudi Mullins photoTrudi Mullins has more than two decades of experience in all aspects of corporate communications, including culture and brand assessment, employee engagement programs, producing and teaching staff training programs, and marketing and community outreach initiatives.

Trudi's goal is to transform organizations, and she's earned results that include creating a communication plan for a capital campaign that raised $3.1 million, revamping a corporate culture that increased employee retention to 98%, and producing leadership and training programs that helped increase net income by ten times in the first year.

Trudi earned her B.S. in Advertising Communication and M.S. in Mass Communication from the University of Southern Mississippi, earned her certificate in Nonprofit Marketing from the University of Richmond and is an Associate Professional in Talent Development from the Association for Talent Development.

In addition to her full-time role as Division Marketing Manager for a nationwide development company, she's also a corporate trainer and blogger at fearlessbrandingcrusade.com. 

Rena Ramsey - BSHRM 2018 President and ALSHRM Diversity Director

Ramsey pictureRena W. Ramsey, SHPR, SHRM-SCP is an experienced and Savvy Human Resource (HR) professional with over 33 years of progressive experience in multiple areas of this important organizational function including affirmative action, diversity, and employee relations. She mostly recently served Senior Vice President Human Resources and as Manager of Diversity Inclusion and Outreach for Regions Bank.

Her professional affiliations include membership in the Society of Human Resources Management. She is currently serving as the president of the Birmingham SHRM chapter and Diversity Director for the Alabama SHRM State Council. She holds a B.S. in Biology from Birmingham-Southern and an M.B.A. from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.



Ryan Sallans - Speaker and Author, Ryan Sallans, Inc.

Sallans photoRyan Sallans is a public speaker, consultant, and author specializing in health care, campus inclusion and workplace issues impacting the transgender community, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) community.

Over the past 15 years Ryan, a professionally training sexuality educator, has conducted over a thousand presentations and training sessions to diverse audiences, including professionals, students, employees, and the general public. He is also the Lead Subject Matter Expert and script writer for e-learning courses used around the nation to train healthcare professionals and staff through Affiliate Risk Management Services, Inc. and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Healthcare Equality Index (HEI).

Ryan attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he received a Bachelor of Arts in English and anthropology, Masters of ARts in English, and a Masters of Arts in educational psychology.


Matthew Scully - Attorney, Burr & Forman LLP

Matt Scully headshorMatthew Scully is a Labor & Employment Partner at Burr & Forman LLP. Matt represents management in the area of labor and employment law, focusing on managing the complex economic, legal and business decisions employers must make in effectively managing their workforce.







Daniel Seguin - Educator, Speaker, and Trainer, TBG Solutions Inc.

Seguin PhotoDaniel is a trainer/client development at TBG Solutions Inc., a risk management and training solutions company that develops strategies, training, and awareness programs to keep staff, students, and employees safe.

 Daniel is currently a student of Business and Political Science at East Texas Baptist University and recently got married in July of 2017. He recently graduated from Tyler Junior College with an Associate of Arts in Business Administration. While at TJC, Daniel was elected as the President of the student body, the Vice-President of Honors in Action in the TJC chapter of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, and co-founded the Green Committee on campus. Daniel also served as the student representative on the Campus Carry Policy committee at TJC, developing the school policy for the campus carry of concealed weapons that went into effect in the fall of 2017. Lastly, Daniel served as the student representative on the Communications and Safety committee within the administration. He was personally invited to serve on these committees by the Provost and Vice-President of Student Affairs, Dr. Juan Mejia.

Since joining TBG Solutions, Daniel has had the opportunity to speak in staff development and faculty convocation sessions at schools and colleges, as well as student assemblies for high school students. Because of his age and magnetic personality, Daniel has a unique ability to capture the attention of young, aspiring students that identify with him in the millennial generation, while his energy and down to earth personality captures even the most seasoned audience.

As a millennial growing up in the information age, Daniel has first-hand knowledge of social media. He has seen the benefits of this high-tech communication as well as the risks involved. He uses his personal and real-life experiences in an engaging format to share critical information about social media and the workplace.

Matthew Stiles - Attorney, Maynard, Cooper, & Gale

Matt Stiles pictureMatt Stiles is a shareholder in Maynard, Cooper & Gale's labor and employment and employee benefits practice groups. He represents businesses throughout the United States in all facets of the employment relationship, including labor relations, employment litigation, employee benefits, mergers and acquisitions, federal contractor labor compliance (including Service Contract Act, union contracts, and affirmative action), and trade secrets and restrictive covenants. 

Matt is annually listed in Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyers (which has recognized him as one of the Top 50 Lawyers in Alabama since 2014), and Chambers USA's Guide to the Leading Lawyers for Business.

He is an Adjunct Professor of Law at The University of Alabama School of Law, and on fall Saturdays you may hear him say, "Roll Tide!"


Mauricio Velásquez, MBA - President, The Diversity Training Group

Velasquez photoMauricio Velásquez is the President of The Diversity Training Group (DTG) in Herndon, Virginia. Mauricio serves as a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) strategist, consultant, trainer, sexual harassment prevention trainer, respectful workplace/toxic employee trainer, employee engagement/trust trainer, executive coach, mentoring trainer, expert witness, and assists organizations with multicultural marketing, selling, and customer service.

DTG's clients include small and large, public and private organizations. A partial list includes: Dominion Energy, Williams & Connolly, PWC Service Authority, Architect of the Capitol Habitat for Humanity (SHR), MBP, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Harrity & Harrity, US Navy Exchange, Support Command, and the United States Postal Service. Past clients include The White House, HP, Black & Decker, BP, OMB, SSA, US Coast Guard, NASA, Ryland Homes, Visa USA, and more.

Mauricio is a former human resource generalist and also served as a demographic researcher for the Internal Revenue Service, where he first anticipated the rise of diversity inside and outside the workplace. He had the good fortune to work with Dr. W. Edwards Deming, Peter F. Drucker, Dr. Crosby, Dr. Jurand, and Dr. Jerry Harvey. Mauricio credits much of his interest in human resource management and the earning of his MBA at George Washington University to their influences.

Mauricio has trained and educated over 950,000 employees, managers, and executives in the areas of diversity, gender equity, mentoring, respect in the workplace and marketplace, and multicultural marketing and selling in every state but North Dakota and his work and life have taken him to more than 75 countries. Mauricio specializes in hostile or challenging audiences - disarming them and ensuring learning and development.

Jeffrey Weaver - Executive Vice President of Production and Content, Authentic Entertainment, LLC

Jeffrey Weaver headshotJeffrey L. Weaver, a proud alumnus of the University of Alabama, is a successful producer, writer, director, cinematographer, editor and production executive who's been in the entertainment industry since his first film shoot in Birmingham at the age of 18.

You may have seen Jeff's work on TLC's Trading Spaces or Little People, Big World, Bravo's Filling Out, A&E's Intervention, Food Network's Best Thing I Ever Ate or Rachael Ray's $40 a Day, Animal Planet's Tanked, or Discovery Channel's Auction Kings. He's helped deliver hundreds of hours of content to dozens of linear networks and digital platforms.

Jeff is currently the Executive Vice President of Production and Content for Authentic Entertainment, LLC. He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife and 4 children.



Kathryn Willis - Partner, Burr & Forman LLP

Kathryn Katy Willis pictureKaty Willis has a wide array of experience in all labor and employment matters. Katy practices in the firm's Labor & Employment Law section. Katy regularly advises employers on leave issues, employee counseling, and policies and procedures. She has delivered presentations on hiring issues, disability management, FMLA, and worker's compensation. She defends clients against a variety of claims, including those brought under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, and USERRA. Katy has successfully defended employers against OSHA citations and regularly advises clients about OSHA compliance. She also assists companies with OFCCP audits and compliance.

Katy serves as a Board Member on the Birmingham Bar for Legal and Legislative Affairs for BSHRM. She is a member of the Young Lawyers Division of the Birmingham Bar Association and also Alabama Women in Business. She has served as a Better basics volunteer.