About our Blog Post author: Shawna Lake is the Vice President of Human Resources at that Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. She is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and currently serves as the Director of Volunteer Management for IndySHRM. Shawna holds degrees in Human Resource Management and Organizational Communication from Ball State University.


In July, we presented our two annual awards to very deserving professionals.  The Volunteer of the Year award was presented to Susan Van Hoosen, CRP.  Susan is the Director of Business Development for Century 21 Scheetz Relocation.  Susan has been a contributing member of IndySHRM for nine years. She has volunteered many, many hours to IndySHRM serving on the Diversity and Program Committees. Currently, Susan is the chair of the Staffing Management Association (SMA) Steering Committee.  In 2008, Susan brought her marketing and leadership insight to SMA.  Major accomplishments include: revamping the former EMA model, new SMA branding, and creating a new vision, mission, and objectives. Her leadership helped the committee’s communication internally, leading to increased committee member input and creative ideas.  Susan contributes generous amounts of time and support to IndySHRM and demonstrates enthusiastic leadership.  Currently, the SMA Committee hosts more than four events during the year and attendance is now more than 50 attendees. These attendees include not only HR professionals, but other cross-functional leaders as well. New membership can be correlated to the increased participation in this committee. The format for SMA events now includes key speakers, panel group discussion and follow up newsletter articles.

Susan is very active in the community and currently serves on the Business Advisory Group for the Indy Partnership and volunteers as a classroom sponsor at IPS School 31. Additionally, Susan is a committee member of other non‐profit organizations such as Zoe’s Bone Marrow Buddies. Susan is also involved with the Fishers Chamber of Commerce, Carmel Chamber of Commerce and Hamilton County Alliance that target business attraction and retention for the Indianapolis area and surrounding communities with a focus on employees and their families. Susan is also a member of the Employee Relocation Council (ERC).   We are very proud to have Susan as our IndySHRM Volunteer of the Year and thank her for her continued hard work and dedication to IndySHRM.

The 2010 recipient of the Award for Professional Excellence is Michelle Foley, SPHR. Michelle currently serves in the role of Vice President of Human Resources for United States Infrastructure Corporation.  She has held this position for the past two years. In her past and current positions, Michelle is known as the person who goes above and beyond for her company.  Michelle has more than 24 years of experience in human resources and personnel support services. In her position, she provides human resource and support to staff of all levels and for all teams throughout the company. Her experience has involved most aspects of HR including management, strategic planning, employee relations, labor relations, policy development, organizational development, compensation and benefit design as well as organizational change. Michelle also has experience with mergers and acquisitions. Through this experience, Michelle has shown herself to be an effective communicator and problem solver.

Another great feature that is recognized in Michelle is that she is very strategic and has great vision. She has been able to improve processes and procedures in anticipation of company growth rather than waiting for the growth to happen. With United States Infrastructure Corporation, she has done a lot of outsourcing and process improvement to make her human resource department a higher functioning department. Michelle is reliable and always there when needed. She travels at the drop of a hat to various company locations to help with hands on recruiting, training or help with other human resource functions that the outside locations might need. She is recognized and has made herself a valuable resource no matter where the company is located.

Michelle believes in continued learning and has the development mentality. She continually works to better her employees through development and the sharing of all of her knowledge that she has learned throughout her years in human resources. She focuses on making the HR function a value added and strategic partner for the betterment of the entire organization and its growth goals.  Michelle Foley truly represents the profession of HR and its continued presence as a strategic function of the business world. Michelle’s ability to educate and lead others is proven and she knows that bettering those around her betters the company. IndySHRM is proud to recognize Michelle as our 2010 Professional of the Year.