By Bob Carragher, Senior State Affairs Advisor

About 65 professionals brought the voice of HR to the California State Capitol last week.

With more than 30 workplace-related measures pending in the California Senate and General Assembly, the visits to legislators in Sacramento were a critical part of CalSHRM’s 2012 Legislative Conference.

The group of 65 was the largest contingent yet for a SHRM state capitol visit. They shared HR’s perspective on two pending bills — California’s Family Rights Act Expansion and Unemployment Discrimination.

The group included many first-timers, noted David Lusk, leader of SHRM’s Advocacy Team ground efforts. One meeting alone included five HR professionals who had never before visited with a legislator. They were recruited by Trisha Zulic of San Diego, a CalSHRM district director and A-Team Advocacy Captain for the 52nd Congressional District.

CalSHRM Government Affairs Director Michael Kalt said, “Every participant enjoyed the experience and said they look forward to doing it again.”

The capitol visits took place on the first day of California State Council’s Legislative Conference, which also featured a legislative forecast by Kalt and a round-up of employment law “must knows” by Mike Letizia, CalSHRM state director-elect.

Other speakers at the conference that served California’s 18 professional chapters included Debbie Horne, CalSHRM state director, and SHRM staffers Mike Aitken on federal HR public policy, Lisa Horn on workplace flexibility, and Pam Green on HR, the next frontier. Field Services Director Karen Verrico of the Pacific West Region also was involved in the event.

“Mike and Mike show powerful presentations on federal and state legislative environment,” attendee Nina E. Woodard said on Twitter, one of a number of tweets about the conference.