Meeting/Event Information

MT|SHRM Webinar Series


May 13, 2020 | 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
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Online only |


Returning to Work: Practical tips from Nashville HR Leaders

Moderator: Chris Nichols, Client Solutions Manager - Recruitment Process Outsourcing, endevis; Cheri Desmarais, Claims Advocate, Gallagher; Roxana Griffin, HR Manager, The Bakery Companies; Kevin Townsel, HR Director, CIty of Franklin

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, HR leaders are setting the tone for how businesses & organizations will return to normal operations.  This panel will discuss their experiences thus far and how they are preparing their employees to return to work.  The conversation will be pertinent for business leaders of all types to understand the safety precautions that must be taken as well as communicating with employees on responsible business practices in a COVID-19 environment.  

  1. Courses of action organizations should consider as they navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic.
  2. HR's role in the overall business strategy
  3. Action items to prepare for a future outbreaks of COVID-19 or other health crises.

Cost: This is a complimentary webinar but registration is required and space is limited.

This program has been awarded 1 hour of Business recertification credit. "MT|SHRM is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDC's) for the SHRM-CP and SHRM SCP. The use of this seal is not an endorsement by the HR Certification Institute of the quality of the program. It means that this program has met the HR Certification Institute's criteria to be pre-approved for recertification credit."

Chris Nichols
is the Client Services Manager for endevis focusing on Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) solutions. At endevis, Chris brings a consultative approach to external stakeholders working with C-Suite, Operational, and Human Resource leaders to build their talent acquisition, talent management, and engagement/retention strategies.  Additionally, Chris serves on the endevis RPO leadership team leading B2B marketing efforts and assisting in technology assessments and recruitment marketing campaigns.  His organization integrates with its client's internal talent acquisition and human resources teams to provide scalable, high-volume, quality recruitment processes, and practices. 

A two-time Eastern Illinois University graduate, Chris is passionate about serving the community. Chris is an active member of the Nashville Health Care Council, Leadership Health Care (where he serves on the Education Committee), and is currently serving a second two-year term on the Board of Directors for the 6th largest SHRM chapter (MT|SHRM) in the U.S.  Chris’s family includes his wife Hayley, a speech-language pathologist, and daughters Reese, Gracen, & Beckham while residing in Murfreesboro, TN. just outside Nashville. 

Cheri Desmarais is a Senior Claims Advocate for Gallagher’s Southeast Region. Her main focus is advocating on behalf of her clients during a loss. She is instrumental in coordinating services between carrier and client through collaboration with orientation, special handling guidelines, and claim reviews. Through risk analysis, she tracks results to share with clients through Stewardship meetings. Cheri is familiar working in areas such as Auto, Property, and General Liability, with expertise in multi-state Workers’ Compensation.

Cheri brings over 25 years of experience in the insurance industry working with commercial clients, including those in the manufacturing, grocers, retail, hospitality, public entity, and healthcare industries. She has obtained a wealth of information in claim review / audits, benchmarking, coverage review, attorney / vendor selection, RMIS evaluation, and complex claims consulting. Her experience includes multi-state claims handling, supervision of national account claim teams, service of insured and self-insured accounts, and operational management of multi-line claims office. Cheri joined the Gallagher family in 2014.

Roxana Griffin joined the Nashville Bun Company as the Human Resources Manager in 2019 where she is responsible for overseeing the function of Human Resources for the Nashville Bakery plant. Her responsibilities include processing new hires, benefits administration, compensation, workers comp, payroll as well as organization development, training and engagement. Prior to her role at Nashville Bun Company, she worked at Quad Graphics, 16 years as a Human Resource manager over 6 different plants.

She obtained her Bachelor of Business Administration from Sam Houston State University from Huntsville, TX and her Masters of Business Administration from MTSU with a concentration of Human Resources.

Roxana is married to Randy Griffin, and is the mother of two young adult ladies!

Kevin Townsel came to the City of Franklin Human Resources Department in March 2017. He is responsible for the supervision, administration of human resources operations and activities for the City including planning and developing employee programs and policies, supervising staff assigned to the Human Resources Department, including Risk Management, Safety, and Benefits. He is also responsible for the City’s compliance with local, state, and federal policies and regulations. Kevin is charged with recruitment, promotional exams, administering the classification and compensation plan, writing job descriptions, conducting salary surveys, and coordinating employee development training. The Human Resources Department also manages the educational incentive and tuition programs.

Prior to coming to the City of Franklin, Kevin served as the Vice-President of Legal Affairs and Human Resources for DLR Management Company, a national restaurant company with approximately 2,000 employees.  He has also worked as an HR executive for Logan's Roadhouse restaurants, Burger King Corporation, and TransCor America.  Townsel holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Tennessee College of Law.

Kevin is a long-time resident of Franklin and was recently elected to his second term on the Franklin Special School District Board.  He currently serves as a board member to My Friend's House and is a  2009 graduate of Leadership Franklin.  He and his wife, Dot,  have a daughter, Kennedy, a student at Poplar Grove Middle School, and a son, Kevin, Jr., a senior at Centennial High School.