AHRMA Board of Directors


Lisa Blanton, 2020 President

Since moving to Austin and joining AHRMA in 2014, Lisa has served on the Board as VP-Finance (2015-2016), Co-VP of Conference (2018), President-Elect (2019), and currently President (2020). Lisa Blanton is the owner and CEO of the Austin Alliance Group, and has a diverse professional background that includes over 30 years in corporate positions of COO, CFO, and CHRO; including 14 years as a business owner. She is passionate about helping leaders drive for high achieving results through strategy, integration, and people relationships. Lisa is focused on the financial, people service, and enterprising aspects of business. Her career is filled with success stories of assisting leadership teams with building the business functions of operations, finance, accounting, and human resources while they concentrate on the development of the product or service.

Core Values: Help first; Do the right thing; Do what I say; Grow or die; Be humbly confident

Core Focus: To help people get what they want from their business and careers.  

Motto: "I am living my authentic life while helping others live their authentic lives."

Credentials: Professional EOS Implementer, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, MBA in Organizational Studies

Outside of work:  Lisa spends quality time with her family & loves to binge watch reality game shows.


Angela Shaw, 2019 Past President

Angela L. Shaw is an accomplished HR professional with experience in multiple industries including retail, government, healthcare and most recently Education.  Angela has grown her career from an administrative employee performing the different functions of human resources to leading the function in several organizations. She also teaches an Essentials of HR Class at Austin Community College where she gets to interact with future HR leaders.

She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business with a minor in Human Resources and is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Management and Leadership. She is dual certified as a Professional in Human Resources and a SHRM Certified Professional.Angela is a 2014 graduate of the AHRMA Stepping Stones program and believes in leadership that is responsible and accountable. Angela has a love of HR as a whole but is specifically devoted to diversity, inclusion, and workforce readiness. 

Angela views volunteer leadership as a pathway for her passion as a servant leader to the HR community.  She has steadily been involved with SHRM affiliated chapters since 2011 having served in multiple capacities including 2013 Workforce Readiness Day Panel Member for WilcoHR Association, 2014 Workforce Readiness Day Panel Member for AHRMA, 2015 Student Summit Panel Member for AHRMA, 2015 President of WilcoHR Association, 2016 Director of Diversity and Inclusion for TXSHRM, and currently serving on the Educational Sessions committee for the HRSouthwest conference since 2017.


Brian Hayes, 2020 President-Elect

Brian Hayes has been heavily involved with the HR community in the State of Texas for many years, having served on the Board of Directors for The HRSouthwest Conference for the past 5 years, and he has been a volunteer for the conference for a total of 7 years.  Brian was recently selected as a finalist for DallasHR’s “HR Stars Awards” as the HR Southwest Conference’s Volunteer Leader of the Year for 2019. Prior to moving to Austin in January 2019 to join the team at Disability Rights Texas as HR Director, Brian lived in the League City, Texas area and served as the Chapter President for Texas Bay Area SHRM for 4 years.  He was recently elected to the Board of Directors for the Austin Human Resource Management Association (AHRMA) as President-Elect for 2020. AHRMA is the third (3rd) largest HR professional association in the state of Texas. In his role as President-Elect, Brian will be responsible for managing the Stepping Stones Program, AHRMA’s 2008 SHRM Pinnacle Award-winning leadership development program.

Brian brings more than 24 years of Human Resources management experience in both for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations. He is a graduate of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) with a Bachelors of Arts in Communication/Public Relations, and holds professional certifications from the Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI) as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR), as well as, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) as a SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).


Katie Hayden, Co VP of Membership

Katie Hayden currently serves as a Senior Human Resources Business Partner for Covenant Management Systems/Austin Regional Clinic. Katie works closely with senior management, focusing on talent acquisition, employee relations, performance management, and succession planning, among other HR functions and employee-facing initiatives. 

Katie holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management, is a Certified Professional though SHRM, and has supported human resources functions in multiple industries including retail, distribution, insurance, and health care. She firmly believes that a company’s most important and valuable asset is its talent. Katie is passionate about working in human resources because each day brings a new challenge or opportunity to help someone - from hiring an individual who’s in danger of losing a home, providing health insurance to someone who’s never had it before, or providing job training that will give employees transferable skills no matter where they work.

Katie relocated to Austin from California in 2017 and absolutely loves Austin! Outside of work she enjoys traveling, crafting, and spending time with her family.



Laarni Canoy, Co VP of Membership

Laarni Canoy,  MBA, SPHR, is Director of Talent Acquisition and HRBP for Scalefactor, an Austin-born FinTech start-up headquartered in hip East Austin.  Laarni thrives in the fast-paced and dynamic environment of the start-up world and helped grow the company ~600% since she joined. Laarni hires Entry-Level to C-Level executives in Technical and Non Technical roles for all departments. She is responsible for directing all Recruiting Team’s efforts and works closely with the CEO, CPO and Executive Team as an Executive Recruiter and HRBP.

Laarni holds an MBA from Notre Dame de Namur University and is a Certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SHPR). Laarni’s global experience spans Manila, HongKong, San Francisco & Austin. Laarni started her career in the Hospitality Industry and has a customer-first and a servant-leader approach in work and life. She has experience working with investment companies and their portfolio companies, helping  entrepreneurs grow their start-up companies, establishing robust partnership with colleges & universities, partnering with hiring groups, platforms and partners. Laarni is passionate about culture, diversity and inclusion, authenticity in leadership and all those big words entail.

When not at work or volunteering with AHRMA, you can find Laarni enjoying the outdoors with her dog, traveling the globe with family and friends, island hopping, street food feasting, immersing herself in the latest non-fiction bestsellers, and eating her way through food & wine spots in Austin!




Justin Sharp, Treasurer

Justin Sharp currently serves as Global Compensation Manager with SailPoint Technologies where he provides global compensation and total rewards guidance along with equity design and administration. Prior to joining SailPoint Technologies, Justin worked with AMD where he provided global compensation guidance for over 25 countries and assisted in equity administration.

Justin also worked for Intelligent Compensation, LLC as the Director of Compensation and Business Consultant. In this capacity he provided compensation analysis and business consulting work for an array of clients throughout the United States and Mexico. Justin’s background in business management and direct human resource, training and loss prevention contributes to his overall effectiveness in helping organizations increase profits, and operational efficiencies and effectiveness while looking for ways to limit adverse operating exposure and expense.

Active in the community, Justin has served on the AHRMA Board of Directors since 2012 where his roles included VP Membership (2013-2014), President-Elect (2015), President (2016) Past President (2017), VP Emerging Professionals (2018-2019), and currently serves as the Treasurer (2020). Previously, he worked with the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure where he assisted the Austin affiliation with event affairs and helped organize and operate the annual event. He received a B.S. in Criminal Justice from Texas State University.

Click here to learn more about volunteering with the Finance Committee.


To be announced, VP of Legal and Legislation



Mya Kelly, Co-VP of Conference

With a resume that ranges from teaching English in South Korea to 15+ years' experience in Human Resources, working in a variety of industries; Mya is a multi-faceted HR leader who always maintains a "people-first" mindset.

Mya is a graduate of Texas Southern University, where she received her B.A. in General Studies and minored in Business Administration. She also currently holds her HR certifications with SHRM and HRCI.

In 2018, Mya joined Holtzman Partners, where she currently leads the HR function overseeing the firm's Total Rewards Program, Employee Engagement Initiatives, Training & Development, Recruitment, Woekforce Planning and Compliance. Mya has a passion for developing others and implementing initiatives that have a hyper-focus on employee growth.

In her spare time, Mya can be found with family and friends, training for her next 10k, or simply at home reading and watching movies.


Leah Jaramillo, Co-VP of Conference

Leah is a certified HR, Management, and Training professional with over 15 years of experience ensuring organizational growth by leveraging technology and education methodologies to establish results-oriented processes and people programs. Originally from California, Leah is “one of those people” that relocated to Austin, TX in 2006 with family and is currently raising a Texan in Leander, TX with her husband. While completing a bachelor’s degree in Psychology at St. Edward’s University, her studies focused on the impact of employee wellbeing on organizational innovation and prosperity. She continues to research this topic as an MBA student, driven by curiosity for how the healthcare industry will adapt to the triple-bottom-line approach of modern organizations.

As a life-long learner and educator, Leah utilizes the following designations to conduct organizational assessments and apply OD-related principles, frameworks, models, tools and techniques to improve design and performance.

  • SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP)
  • Accredited Advisor in Insurance Management (AAI-M)
  • Insurance Training Professional (ITP)
  • Instructional Designer (ATD)
  • Everything DiSC Facilitator

Leah applies all these experiences as she develops educational opportunities for HR practitioners of Travis & Williamson County. She’s grateful to call this little oasis home and be part of a community that is uniquely situated to model the future of work.  


Tami Andres, Co-VP of Programs

As a Human Resources Professional with over 25 years’ experience in a variety of industries, Tami is well versed in management, leadership, employee relations, human resources and organizational development. She currently serves as the Vice President of Human Resources for Goodwin & Company, a Texas based Association Management Company.  Tami holds certifications as a Strength Deployment Inventory and Core Strengths facilitator and is passionate about implementing communication and collaboration strategies that drive managing conflict and improving relationships resulting in organizational success. 

Tami currently serves on the Austin Human Resource Management Association Board as Co-VP of Programs and Executive Advocate for the Strategic Human Resources Forum.  She is passionate about helping others with personal and professional growth and development as well as giving back to the community.


Jen Garza, Co-VP of Programs

Jen Garza is a Human Resources leader with over two decades of successful experience in all aspects of HR.  She specializes in providing strategic advice to operational managers, directing administrative functions of complex organizations, employee relations, mediating disputes, and the development of organizational culture

Jen enjoys a good Netflix binge but also enjoys spending time with her family, shopping and traveling. She is married with three children, Timothy, Marissa and Myranda and one grandson, Prestyn. Jen also enjoys mentoring up-and-coming HR professionals where she shares her knowledge and passion for HR.


Jennifer Charles, VP of Diversity & Inclusion

Jennifer Charles is a skilled HR professional with experience in industries that include non-profit, government, education, private and public sector. Jennifer currently serves as Human Resource Generalist for the Texas Association of School Boards were she focuses on Recruiting, Diversity and Inclusion, and Employee Relations.  

Jennifer has her Bachelor of Science degree in Business with a minor in Human Resources from Concordia University were she graduated with honors. Jennifer has a love for HR and talent acquisitions, diversity, and inclusion.

Jennifer is active volunteer in multiple community programs and non-profits in the Central Texas area. She has a passion for mentoring the future leaders of tomorrow and giving guidance to disadvantage youth by actively mentoring and tutoring youth.

Click here to learn more about volunteering with the D&I Committee.


Mary Evans, VP of Communication

Mary Evans, PHR, SHRM-CP, is the Vice President of Human Resources with 360training.com and is responsible for leading and implementing the talent management and talent acquisition programs globally for 360training.  Mary has approximately 20 years’ experience in the Human Resources field, managing teams in health care, real estate and manufacturing industries. 

Mary participates in SHRM, AHRMA, ATD and holds SHRM-CP and PHR certifications.  She has spoken at HR workshops on topics related to culture, as well as diversity and inclusion.  Mary is passionate about mentoring HR professionals and students, creating a great culture environment and giving back to the local communities.




Laurie Holsman, VP of Career Development

Laurie Holsman is a Talent Management Advisor with 18+ years of experience in talent acquisition and organizational management. As the CEO and Founder of Holsman Consulting Group and Actions on Purpose, she assists businesses with building strategic talent management programs and employee development initiatives. Laurie has worked as a career and interview coach for more than 20 years, helping over 1000 individuals learn the best way to showcase their unique value. As a professional speaker and training facilitator, Laurie shares her insights at conferences, workshops, and various corporate events. She is also a regular volunteer with numerous job seeker networks, non-profits, and startups.  

Click here to learn more about volunteering with the Career Development Committee.


Patricia Drake, VP of Workforce Readiness

Patricia is a native Arizonan who found her way to Austin, TX 10 years ago. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, exploring the outdoors, finding new adventures, and meeting new people.

She has more than nine years of experience within all areas of human resources. Having worked with non-profits, for-profit, and global corporations, Patricia brings extensive experience in organizational development, recruiting and staffing, strategic and operational planning, compliance management and more.

Patricia has been a member with AHRMA since 2015 and volunteered in the Mentorship Program and recently graduated in the Stepping Stones Enhanced Leadership Program in 2019. 

She is passionate about helping to provide and identify resources for HR professionals and mentoring. 

Patricia is honored to be part of AHRMA and is humbled to serve on the board of directors for 2020.


Megan Thornton, VP of Emerging Professionals

To be updated.

Click here to learn more about volunteering with the Emerging Professionals Committee.


Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software