Closing General Session

2016 Talent Symposium

The Washington Outlook: Countdown to the General Election and Spotlight on the Workplace
 (3:05 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.)
Workplace Application: You will hear about the latest information on pending and anticipated legislative, regulatory and judicial activity that will affect the workforce.
In an election season that has been less than conventional, voters will head to the polls in November to elect a new president and decide which party or parties will control the 115th Congress. Key workplace issues are front and center on the campaign trail including compensation equity, paid maternity/paternity leave, immigration reform, the Affordable Care Act and tax reform.  Efforts to consider new workplace flexibility options and address labor-management practices are all at the forefront of Congress as it tries to conclude its business for the year. The Obama administration is also trying to put the finishing touches on its workplace regulatory legacy with changes to the overtime regulations, changes to labor-management relation practices and new requirements for federal contractors. How will these issues affect your workplace? This session will provide an overview of:
•         Current congressional activity.
•         A preview of potential issues for a new Congress and administration and how these issues could impact your organization.
•         An up-to-date discussion on current federal regulatory activity.
Presenter: Michael P. Aitken, vice president, government affairs, SHRM, Alexandria, Va.
Top Recruiting Trends for 2016 and Beyond: A Panel of Experts Provides Its Insights
 (3:50 p.m. - 4:40 p.m.)
Workplace Application: Hear from a panel of talent management experts about the top trends in recruitment and talent acquisition.
Adopting smart talent acquisition strategies is key to the successful growth of most companies. This session will explore how new recruiting technologies are reshaping the competition for talent. You will learn about new trends in recruiting tactics, as well as hear insights into how companies are building their employer brand. A panel of experts—moderated by Tony Lee, SHRM’s vice president of editorial—will help you prepare for the top recruiting trends of 2016 and beyond by analyzing these important issues and by providing advice on strategies for success. This session will explore:
• Key advancements in recruiting strategies, with advice on how to implement them.
• Emerging technologies to allow you to connect with critical talent.
• Proven techniques that help your company stand out from your competitors.
Moderator: Tony Lee, vice president, editorial, SHRM, Alexandria, Va.
Panelists: Peter Weddle, chief executive officer, TAtech, Stamford, Conn.; Thomas M. Darrow, SHRM-SCP, founder and principal, Talent Connections, LLC, Atlanta, Ga. and chair, SHRM Foundation, Alexandria, Va. ; and Danielle Monaghan, director of Talent Acquisition – Consumer, Amazon, Seattle, Wash.
Date(s) & Time(s): 
Friday, July 15, 2016 - 3:00pm to 4:45pm

Michael P. Aitken

Michael P.

Mike Aitken has worked at SHRM since 2003 and currently serves as the Senior Vice President of Government Affairs. Prior to joining SHRM, he served for 14 years as associate director for Governmental and External Relations at the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR). Previously, Aitken worked on state public policy issues at Bonner & Associates, a public affairs firm in Washington, DC. Currently, he is based in Alexandria, VA.


Tony Lee


Tony Lee is vice president of editorial for the Society for Human Resource Management, where he oversees all editorial functions and staff and focuses on evolving SHRM's content strategy globally. SHRM’s publishing portfolio includes HR Magazine, HR News online, e-newsletters and SHRM-published books.

Lee is a recognized authority on recruitment trends, and prior to joining SHRM he was editor and publisher of, an award-winning site he created for job hunters and the HR community. He also served as chief alliance officer of CareerCast’s parent company, Adicio Inc., a leading developer of online recruitment solutions. Adicio powers the HR Jobs site for SHRM, which is also a partner in the CareerCast HR Network.

Lee is a frequent conference speaker in the U.S. and internationally, and has appeared as a career guidance authority on a range of television and radio programs, such as those produced by NBC, ABC, CNN, FOX, NPR, CNBC, Huffington Post, WCBS and The Wall Street Journal, including “The Today Show” and “Good Morning America.”

Lee is co-author of “The Jobs Rated Almanac” (Barricade), and “Career Choice, Change and Challenge” (JIST Pub.), and has published more than 15 books through his career. He also is a columnist for a range of industry web sites, including RecruitingTrends, Jobboarders and Staffing Stream. He has written The Wall Street Journal's “Managing Your Career” column, and his articles have appeared in hundreds of newspapers and magazines globally. Lee also has served on the board of directors of the International Association of Employment Web Sites for many years.

Lee is the founder and former publisher of The Wall Street Journal Online Vertical Network and all of the sites within that network, including,,,, and “Political Diary,” a paid email newsletter about politics. Under his leadership, those sites won a range of awards and accolades. Combined, the Network sites attracted an average of 2.5 million unique visitors and 20 million page views each month. Lee also was one of two finalists for the Newspaper Association of America’s annual Online Innovator Award. Prior to moving online, Lee was editor in chief of the National Business Employment Weekly and of Managing Your Career, both published by Dow Jones & Co. Lee started his career as Director of Publications for the Chicago Chapter of the American Diabetes Association.


Thomas M. Darrow, SHRM-SCP

Thomas M.
Darrow, SHRM-SCP

Thomas M. Darrow is the Founder and Principal of Talent Connections, LLC.  Since 1999, the Atlanta based professional services firm has specialized in recruiting—including recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), executive search, HR consulting, and contract recruiting.  

In March, 2009, Tom teamed with nationally recognized recruiting and career transition experts to launch Career Spa, LLC.  The career transition company is revolutionizing the way unemployed and misemployed workers are equipped to assess and proactively manage their career transitions.

Tom has over 27 years’ experience in the Human Resources and Recruitment profession -- including 9 years with the global professional services firms of Price Waterhouse (now PricewaterhouseCoopers) and Andersen Consulting (now Accenture).   

He is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Atlanta Chapter (SHRM-Atlanta).  In 2015 he received the SHRM-Atlanta Lifetime Achievement Award and was named the HR Leader of the Year by the SHRM Georgia State Council.  At the National level, he is Chair of the SHRM Foundation Board of Directors and served on the SHRM Staffing Management Special Expertise Panel from 2005-2008, and on the Cost per Hire (CPH) Standard Taskforce. He was the 2006/2007 President of SHRM-Atlanta, the largest city Chapter in the country out of 600 Chapters and served on the Board of Directors from 2005-2008.  Under his leadership as President, SHRM-Atlanta’s membership increased 60% to over 2600 members and the Chapter launched two programs that won a 2007 SHRM Pinnacle Award for membership growth and a 2008 SHRM Pinnacle Award for the Mayor’s Youth Program.  He is the Founder and former Chair of the Technology Association of Georgia (TAG) Recruiting Society and has served on the TAG Board of Directors from 2005 through 2009.  From 2005 through 2007, he was the Inaugural President of the TAG Leadership Council and served on the Executive Committee of the TAG Board.  

Danielle Monaghan


Danielle Monaghan leads the talent acquisition team for Amazon’s Consumer Division. She has 20+ years of TA experience living and working on three continents (Asia, Africa and the Americas, specifically North America).  Prior experience includes leading the HR function for Cisco for North Asia (Greater China, Japan and Korea), Cisco Technical Services in San Jose, CA and the HR and TA functions for Microsoft R&D in Greater China and Taiwan, as well as leading various TA functions, including executive recruiting for Microsoft in Redmond, WA.  In her role as Sr. Director of Global Staffing and Diversity for Microsoft’s Entertainment and Devices division, she also oversaw hiring for the U.S., Canada, UK, China and France.

She holds an MBA from the Jack Welch Management institute and a BA in Information technology.  She also holds a certificate in Strategic Human Resources from the School of ILR at Cornell University.

Danielle enjoys travel, good wine and food, sailing, reading, music and squash.  She hopes to be good at one of her hobbies some day.

Cindy Songne


Cindy offers over twenty-five (25) years of valuable recruitment experience in a variety of management roles and industries, including staffing agency, corporate recruiting, classified newspaper advertising, digital advertising, employer branding agency, and eleven (11) years of building strong, mutually beneficial relationships with the executives of Monster’s global ad agency partners, significantly growing Monster’s agency practice.  Cindy has served on the Newspaper Association of America’s Recruitment Board; was the Arizona SHRM Staffing President for four (4) years; won SHRM's Host award for outstanding leadership; and served on the Southern California Staffing Management Association Board.  She has presented at numerous conferences and industry association events, including AZ SHRM, Southern California SHRM, Southern California Association of Health Care Recruiters, TAtech (fka IAEWS), ERE and Recruiting Trends.  She has published articles and a training video on recruitment best practices.   In the early 90’s, Cindy was with one of the first newspapers in the country to put employment ads on the web, which earned an Advertising Excellence award.  She was elected to serve two (2) terms on the Board of Governors for the International Association of Employment Web Sites (IAEWS). Today, at Hodes, Cindy works with enterprise employers to create measurable value by redefining how brands connect to talent. 

Peter Weddle


Peter Weddle has been the CEO of three HR consulting companies, a Partner in the Hay Group and the recipient of a Federal award for leadership-related research.  Described by The Washington Post as "... a man filled with ingenious ideas," he has authored or edited over two dozen books and been a columnist for the interactive edition of The Wall Street Journal, National Business Employment Weekly and

His most recent books include A Prescription for the Soul: A Historical Novel About Boomers & the American Dream, A Multitude of Hope: A Novel About Rediscovering the American Dream, The Career Fitness Workbook: How to Find, Win & Hang Onto the Job of Your Dreams, The Career Activist Republic and Next Practices: How to Be Better Than Best in Online Recruitment

Weddle is also the CEO of TAtech: the Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions.  TAtech is the global trade association for the talent acquisition technology industry.  Collectively, its Members power or operate over 60,000 sites worldwide and provide state-of-the-art products and innovative services for virtually every facet of talent acquisition.

An Airborne Ranger, Weddle is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point.  He has attended Oxford University and holds advanced degrees from Middlebury College and Harvard University.

Grand C
Amount of Credit: 
Credit Type: 
Session Type: 
General Session
HR Expertise
Critical Evaluation
Hide from On Demand: