SHRM Foundation Innovation Award - SHRM Long Island Chapter

by Kim Cottage

Kim Cottage, Foundation chair at SHRM-Long Island

The SHRM Foundation advances global human capital knowledge and practice by providing thought leadership and educational support; and sponsoring funding and driving the adoption of cutting edge, actionable, evidence –based research.

In 2015 I had the distinct honor on behalf of the SHRM –LI Chapter( which currently has over 1000 plus members) of winning the “Innovation Award” from the SHRM Foundation; the award recognizes chapters and state councils that “go above and beyond in exemplifying and fulfilling the SHRM Foundation’s mission

As I look back on some of the initiatives of the year I find three to highlight, which has exploded from the onset and continues to manifest into the never ending structure of what the SHRM mission is all about.

Fundraising is a viable asset to the SHRM Foundation but in 2015; we saw the inception of a new enterprise for fundraising.  At our monthly seminar meetings our corporate sponsors would donate a prize to be raffled off.  Chapter members would purchase a ticket during registration and as a result we were able to take in an additional $300.00 each meeting benefiting and advancing the support of the Chapter.  Thru the use of not only our meetings but now social media all our “sponsors were acknowledged and thanked for their continued support of driving the SHRM mission further.

Another initiative was our scholarship “hotline”. The SHRM Foundation awards scholarships to undergraduates and graduates who are looking to pursue a career in the HR profession.  Our website was an informative resource for them but sometimes you need something more.  Our hotline allows our applicants to directly connect with me, where I can navigate the entire process with them and sometimes just reassure them.  I would be remiss in not taking an opportunity to acknowledge Dorothy Mebane, who also assisted all interested applicants with any questions or concerns that they had.  She is so passionate about the work she does and we are very indebted to her for all the hard work and support she gives. As a result of all the hard work and continuous efforts of everyone, SHRM will give out $37000.00 this year which is an increase of $10,000.00 from prior year. 

My final initiative was the “JUST ONE THING” which had intent to create buzz within the community for all HR professionals. The concept was to further increase the amount of educational material available to all our chapter members, thru reports, DVD’s and of course social media. In today’s never ending changing world it is an amazing outlet to have countless resources available at our fingertips but we all can’t be everywhere all the time.  “JUST ONE THING” creates a domino chain reaction whereas we all share our knowledge along the way with our fellow members. Strength comes in masses and enhances our Foundation to grow and thrive. 

Harvesting all these resources and turning it into the knowledge that shapes, develops and creates the way for future generations is exactly what I believe the SHRM Foundation passion is all about and truly where my passion comes from.  Society has always taught us that success comes from many avenues of learning but sometimes “real life” experiences are more meaningful and impactful on shaping one’s life. 


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