July 2010


In This Edition

By Dave Furlan, PHR
GMA SHRM President

Bizarre Laws - Minnesota Gets Tough on Mosquitos

2009 Wisconsin Act 140

Interim Final Grandfathering Rules Released

The Benefits World is Changing. What is Your Company Doing?
2010 GMA SHRM Benefits Survey

2010 WISHRM Workplace Diversity Advocate Award

Ten Points of Employee Behavior Documentation

August 17, 2010 GMA SHRM Toolbox - Employee Relations; Working WIth Your and For Your Employees

GMA SHRM Day to Make a Difference

GMA SHRM Volunteer of the Year

July 20, 2010 Summit Topic: Have a Discrimination Claim? Now What?

2009-2010 Superior Merit Award Winner

August 3, 2010 - GMA SHRM Golf Outing

Pay It Forward Membership Program

GMA Membership Poll

GMA SHRM Member of the Month

GMA SHRM is LinkedIn

- Welcome New Members!

- Movin' Up

- In Transition

- What's Cool in HR

Click here to see the full GMA SHRM Event Calendar.

July 20, 2010 - GMA SHRM Summit - Have a Discrimination Claim? Now What?
Program Details

August 3, 2010 - GMA SHRM Golf Outing
Program Details


Printable version


































2010 Corporate Partners

Gold Level
American Family Insurance
Boardman Law Firm
Career Momentum
Galaxy Technologies
The Payroll Company
Right Management
Wisconsin Rx

Silver Level
Lee Hecht Harrison
Venturini Business Consultants, LLC
Physicians Plus Insurance Corporation
Cottingham & Butler Employee Benefits

Bronze Level
Melli Law, S.C.
Bunbury & Associates
Express Employment Professionals
QBE The Americas
Stark Company Realtors
Higgins Insurance Group
Edgewood College
The Alliance
Unity Health Insurance
UW Credit Union

Thank you!



Dave Furlan, PHR


In all of the work that I’ve done over the years, nothing has been more important to me than delivering great service. At the age of eleven, I started working for my parents in our family pizzeria in Colorado. It was a tough job at times, trying to get customers to trust a boy to get their order right and give them correct change. But I quickly learned to treat the customer with respect and to go beyond a standard “thank you”. By doing so, I created a service relationship, something more engaging and genuine than a simple transaction.

As your incoming GMA SHRM President for 2010-11, my service to you, our members, will be my highest priority. My goal is to strive for you to have the best experience possible within our chapter and among our community of HR professionals. Fortunately, I have a group of talented individuals to help me. Our 2010-2011 Board of Directors consists of leaders with both the experience and passion to bring about outstanding results and benefits for our members this year. Please join me in welcoming them:


  • President Elect: Mike Leibundgut, SPHR
  • Immediate Past President: Kari Lauritsen, SPHR
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Wendy Brendel, SPHR
  • Vice President of Membership: JoAnna Vanderpoel, PHR
  • Vice President of Programming: Jeff Russell
  • Vice President of Communications & Marketing: Jake Siudzinski
  • Director of Workforce Readiness & Diversity: Melissa Wieland
  • Director of Education and Professional Development: Kris Schmitt
  • Director of Government Affairs: Zach Penshorn, PHR

Allow me to give special appreciation to Kari Lauritsen, our Immediate Past President. Kari has been a wonderful mentor to me as I prepared for this role. Thank you, Kari – you’ve made this a lot of fun already and I’m really looking forward to the upcoming year!

I also want to take this opportunity to thank all of our committee chairs and volunteers for their hard work over the past several years and for the exciting plans they have for this year. As an incoming leader of our chapter, it is quite humbling to know so many dedicated individuals are doing their part to make great things happen at GMA SHRM. In fact, I invite each of you to make 2010-11 your year to volunteer for GMA SHRM. We have numerous opportunities available and I know there is one that fits your time commitment and interest.

One very important project going on right now is our Compensation and Benefits Surveys. The critical participation window for these important tools will be closing soon, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to include your data and receive a substantially reduced rate to purchase the surveys.

Our chapter also just finished up our membership survey. The participation rate was very impressive, and we will be analyzing the results and incorporating them into our strategic initiatives and committee goals. Look for more information from me and other GMA SHRM leaders in future newsletters.

Whether or not you completed the membership survey, I invite all members to contact me at 608-467-5021 or dfurlan@cottinghambutler.com with any ideas or thoughts as we head into the upcoming year. I look forward to providing the best service possible to all of you.

To your continued success,

Dave Furlan, PHR

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GMA SHRM Board of Directors

Dave Furlan, PHR

Mike Leibundgut, SPHR
President Elect

Kari Lauritsen, SPHR
Immediate Past President


Wendy Brendel, SPHR
Secretary Treasurer

Kris Schmitt
Director, Education & Development

JoAnna Vanderpoel, PHR
VP, Membership

Zach Penshorn, PHR
Director, Government Affairs


Jeff Russell
VP, Programming

Jake Siudzinski

VP, Marketing & Communications


Melissa Wieland
Director Workforce Readiness & Diversity

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Bizarre Laws

Maybe Wisconsin should add this to the next agenda.  According to Minnesota Chapter 404 Section 145.35, "the abatement or suppression of mosquitoes of any kind, whether disease bearing or merely pestiferous, within any or all areas of the state, is advisable and necessary for the  maintenance and betterment of the health, welfare and prosperity of the people thereof; and is found and declared to be for public purposes.  All areas wherein mosquitoes incubate or hatch are declared to be public nuisances, as harmful or inimical to the health, welfare and prosperity of the inhabitants and may be abated as hereinafter provided". 

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2009 Wisconsin Act 140

Tammy L. Barden, Employee Relations Specialist, WPS Health Insurance

Senate Bill 308 was enacted into law in March of 2010 and Wisconsin employers will want to be aware of this new Act. It requires an employer to permit an employee who is a volunteer fire fighter, emergency medical technician, first responder or ambulance driver for a volunteer fire department or fire company, a public agency or a nonprofit corporation to be late for or absent from work if the lateness or absence is due to the employee responding to an emergency that begins before the employee is required to report to work.

It is important to note that this does not allow an employee to leave their paid job for an emergency call but covers emergencies prior to the start of their shift. The employer can require the employee to provide documentation proving that they were late or absent due to an emergency situation. According to 2009 Wisconsin Act 140, employees are expected to make every effort to notify their employer when they are dispatched to an emergency that will cause them to be late or absent. For more information, go to http://www.legis.state.wi.us/2009/data/acts/09Act140.pdf.

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Interim Final Grandfathering Rules Released

Adam Jensen, JD, CEBS, GBA, FLMI, Director of Compliance Services, Cottingham & Butler Consulting Services.

On June 14, 2010, the Department of Labor ( DOL), the Internal Revenue Service ( IRS), and the Department of Health and Human Services ( HHS) released the interim final rules for grandfathering health plans under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). 


To learn more about the rules for grandfathering health plans, click here.

Adam Jensen, JD, CEBS, GBA, FLMI is the Director of Compliance Services for Cottingham & Butler Consulting Services and has worked in the insurance and employee benefits industry since 1986. Adam specializes in providing regulatory compliance and plan design services for health and welfare plans.

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The Benefits World is Changing. What is your Company Doing?

The 2010 GMA SHRM Benefit Survey  

You can now participate in the 2010 GMA SHRM Benefit Survey. This survey comes out every other year, so your input at this time is very important. The last day to enter your benefits information and be included in the report is July 9, 2010. The more organizations that submit information, the greater the accuracy of the results! Provide on-going value to your fellow Madison Area HR Professionals —submit your information today!

For more information about the benefits survey, click here.

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2010 WISHRM Workplace Diversity Advocate Award

Diversity as we define it means difference. Diversity enriches our organizations. We all learn from those whose life experiences, beliefs, and perspectives are different from our own. It promotes personal growth, it strengthens employees to be good citizens in an increasingly complex society and it fosters mutual respect and teamwork.

The Wisconsin SHRM recognizes an individual or organization that is a role model in their community as a strong advocate for diversity. To view the criteria or to nominate someone for this award, click here .

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Job Accommodation Network
Contributed By Holly Bonnicksen-Jones, HR Director, MRA – The Management Association

The Americans with Disabilities Act and its amendments (and the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act) require employers to seriously consider providing accommodations for employees with disabilities. Many employers concerned that accommodation costs turn to the Job Accommodation Network for ideas on cost-effective accommodation.

The Job Accommodation Network (JAN), a service of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy since 1983, provides free consulting services for employers and rehabilitation professionals seeking local resources for workplace assessments and for device fabrication and modification. On JAN’s website is a Searchable Online Accommodation Resource (SOAR) system designed to let users explore various accommodation options for people with disabilities in work and educational settings.  

JAN also offers the Employers' Practical Guide to Reasonable Accommodation under the ADA, which is a summary of some of the most frequent accommodation issues and JAN's practical ideas for resolving them. As new information is available or new issues develop, the Guide is updated to reflect the changes.

Look to JAN’s website for information on ADA and the recent amendments, how to provide reasonable accommodations for applicants during the recruitment and selection process, related sample policies and procedures, and information regarding various adaptive devices.

You can reach JAN directly by calling 1.800.526.7234 or emailing them at jan@jan.wvu.edu. To access the JAN website, use the following URL: http://www.jan.wvu.edu.


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Ten Points of Employee Behavior Documentation
Contributed By Holly Bonnicksen-Jones, HR Director, MRA – The Management Association

Performance documentation can be the best defense in the case of third party review, such as a discrimination complaint. The following are key elements to include in a written warning, suspension, or a performance improvement plan:

  • Performance history summary, including any previous discipline for related events.
  • The standard that was violated, the reason for the standard and how the standard was communicated to the employee.
  • Supports provided in the past.
  • The specific facts surrounding the employee’s unsatisfactory behavior or performance.
  • The effect of the employee’s failure to satisfy the rule or to meet the standard which helps the employee understand how important his/her actions are.
  • Future expectations in specific terms and with specific timetables.
  • Specific consequences of future violations with statements.
  • Future supports and feedback meetings that will be provided to increase the potential for employee success.
  • Statement of the organization’s willingness to help the employee meet the expectations and express hope that he or she will succeed.
  • Place for the manager’s, the employee’s and the witness’ signatures and the date signed (if the employee refuses to sign, note the refusal on the document and include the date and time it was presented to the employee).

Failing to document these points can be detrimental to the employee in question, and put your company at risk.

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August 17, 2010 GMA SHRM Toolbox
Topic: Employee Relations - Working with your and for your employees

Looking for ways to build more open relations and increase communication and morale with your employees?

Do you really know what your employees are thinking about management?

The August Toolbox program will provide many helpful tips and tactics for employers to use in building a more engaging workplace that supports employer goals of union avoidance. With the Employee Free Choice Act being discussed in Washington, employers cannot afford to assume they are immune to union activity and should ask themselves if they are doing everything they can to build positive employee relations in their organizations.

To learn more about this event or to register, click here.

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Day to Make a Difference
Contributed by Cassy Van Dyke, SPHR, Past President

On June 11, 2010, a group of GMA SHRM member volunteers came together for our first annual Day to Make a Difference. Our members volunteered in three food pantries in our local communities. Read below what our members said about their experience:

I had the opportunity to spend my Day to Make a Difference at the Second Harvest Food Bank. Our first assignment was to sort through onions and throw out the ‘bad’ ones. Many of those that we considered ‘good’ were not the quality of onions that we see at the grocery store. It made me realize how quick we are to throw things away when we perceive them as ‘bad’. All we had to do was peel off a couple of layers, and the onion was not only ‘good’ but would help provide nutrition to a family in need. It was a very rewarding experience for me!” – Chris Storlie

I had the opportunity to work with five other HR professionals at the Second Harvest Food Bank. We took bulk food from large totes and re-packaged it to be distributed to area food pantries and their patrons. Second Harvest's mission and work is vital to helping the less fortunate ‘stay afloat’ during difficult times. The amount of work to be done and the amount of food that passes through the center really makes it clear that hunger is a major problem, even in this area. I enjoyed the time I spent with my peers and left feeling very thankful (again!) for all that my family and I have.” – Karen Bender

It was amazing to see the coordination among employees and volunteers (from GMA SHRM and another group there that day) that goes into getting a 1200 lb. pallet of onions out into the community! Second Harvest does an amazing job of working with what they have to make the most of it for their patrons and other pantries they serve.” – Melissa Wieland

I really enjoyed my time assisting at Second Harvest on Friday. We processed over 3700 pounds of high quality produce in just three hours. It's hard to imagine a better service than providing fresh, healthy, and nutritious food to those in need.” – Mark Mapes

While I've volunteered at other events, I've never volunteered at a Food Pantry. At the Second Harvest Food Bank, they truly thrive on (and would not be successful without) volunteers. It's also wonderful to know that ‘many hands make light work’ and to feel appreciated for the time and effort we gave. I truly felt like I was able to make a difference in one short afternoon and with our help, families will have food available to them sooner. Lastly, I enjoyed working with the other GMA SHRM members and getting to know each of them better - the combination of volunteering and networking made an amazing experience for me. Thank you for the opportunity!” – Beth Weiler

The Day to Make a Difference acted as a reminder to me of how many people are less fortunate than I am. Being able to spend just a few hours helping others who struggle through tough times made me feel grateful for what I have. Giving back to the community is very rewarding and opens your eyes to what true fortune is! I have been blessed...” – Mike Leibundgut

I invited my wife and three children to join me in volunteering at The River Food Pantry. What a welcoming place and a positive spirit of community! We each had an assigned job in the pantry and really enjoyed interacting with both the other volunteers and patrons. It was such a great family outing that we've already planned to return on the next Friday evening when the pantry is open.” – Dave Furlan

Our Day To Make A Difference was an excellent way for me to learn more about the special work that goes on in our community on an ongoing basis. I learned St. Vincent de Paul operates the largest food pantry in Dane County! It was gratifying to know that my time would be valued even though we were limited to just a few hours. At times, it’s easy to get wrapped up in day-to-day activities and forget the ways I could make a difference in someone else’s life.” – Kari Lauritsen

"The Day to Make a Difference was a humbling and powerful reminder of the many opportunities there are to help those in need. It was great to learn more about the St. Vincent de Paul food pantry volunteers and how they serve the community. I encourage anyone to take even a few hours out of their lives to volunteer at the food pantry - it was a truly rewarding experience." - Cassy Van Dyke

Missed the opportunity to take part in our Day to Make a Difference? Consider these options:

  • Sign up to attend or be a sponsor at the GMA SHRM Golf Outing! 100% of sponsor proceeds will benefit the Second Harvest Food Bank.
  • Make a financial contribution to Second Harvest. To make a financial contribution via check, make your check payable to: GMA SHRM - Second Harvest and mail to the Chapter Office at 2830 Agriculture Dr., Madison, WI 53718.

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GMA SHRM Volunteer of the Year

Congratulations to JoAnna Vanderpoel! JoAnna was chosen as the 2010 Volunteer of the Year for the GMA SHRM chapter. JoAnna has been a volunteer on the Membership Committee for several years and the Chair of the Committee for the past year. JoAnna has been instrumental in implementing several new Membership Committee initiatives including Pay it Forward, the new member welcome packets, and the member referral plan. She has also been responsible for designing and implementing a volunteer opportunity tracking program for the Chapter, among many other tasks. JoAnna is truly a valuable asset to the Membership Committee and the Chapter! Thank you, JoAnna.

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July 20, 2010 GMA SHRM Summit
Topic: Have a discrimination claim? Now what?

Sometimes good hiring and workplace practices are not enough to avoid a discrimination complaint against your company.  This Summit will explore options available to the human resource professional for handling a complaint, both internally, with co-workers as well as management, and externally if a complaint is filed, with the various administrative agencies, and, potentially the media.  We will also discuss issues involved in assessing whether the company’s response should be settlement or a “no-holds-barred” defense. 

To learn more about this event or to register, click here.

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2009-2010 Superior Merit Award Winner

GMA SHRM would like to congratulate UW-Whitewater (a GMA SHRM sponsored student chapter) for earning the 2009-2010 Superior Merit Award! This is the 26 th consecutive year that UW-Whitewater has won this award.

SHRM’s annual Student Chapter Merit Award program exists to develop more effective student chapters and to promote outstanding chapter activities and projects in four areas:

  • Basic student chapter requirements
  • Chapter programming and professional development of members
  • Support of the human resource profession
  • Partnership with SHRM

Congratulations to UW-Whitewater for their continued achievement!

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August 3, 2010 – GMA SHRM Golf Outing

The first three years were such a great success that we are back again! Join us as we host our Fourth Annual Golf Outing at the Oaks Golf Course on Tuesday, August 3rd. Proceeds will benefit Second Harvest Food Bank. (Be sure to bring canned food items to exchange for mulligans!)

You can sign up to play with a specific foursome or as an individual and we will pair you up with a group!

To view more information or to sign up for this event, click here.

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Pay It Forward Membership Program

What is the Pay It Forward Membership Program? GMA SHRM provides active members who are unemployed at the time of their membership renewal a one-time opportunity to extend their membership for up to one year – at no cost. GMA SHRM believes this continued affiliation to our loyal members will help transitioning members stay current on the issues impacting the HR profession and provide them with the needed resources to assist them in their job search.

Click here to see if you qualify or to complete the request form.

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GMA SHRM Member Poll

Current Question: Given economic conditions and budget constraints, what is your organization doing for a summer company picnic?

Visit the GMA SHRM home page to participate in the poll!

Do you have a burning HR question that you’d like to see featured on our GMA SHRM Member Poll? If so, please submit your questions to Jake Siudzinski at jsiudzinski@starkhomes.com.

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GMA SHRM Member of the Month

Name: Rick Baer

Where do you currently work? I work for the US Navy Recruiting District Chicago. I have an office here in Madison on Wright Street at the Navy and Marine Corps Reserve Center.

What is the focus of your position? I am a Health Care Recruiter for Officer Programs. I recruit phycisians, dentists, nurses, and all other healthcare staff. I also recruit students to take part in our healthcare scholarship programs.

How long have you been in the Human Resource field? I have been in HR for about 5 years now. I am also a peri-op (surgery) nurse in the Navy and I plan to make the full switch to HR in a year or so.

Which of your career accomplishments makes you proudest? Being deployed to Germany for 14 months to serve as a peri-op nurse and help the wounded service members coming directly off the battlefield become stabilized for their return trip to the states. I did this late 2006 to late 2007.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received? Simply put, listen to people.

Why did you decide to join GMA SHRM? To grow professionally and learn more about the HR field. Having a beer at your membership meeting cemented my faith in the HR community. I'm completely sold now.

If you’d like to be featured as the Member of the Month in an upcoming issue of HR InTouch, please e-mail Kate Karre at KKarre@parkbank.com.

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GMA SHRM is LinkedIn

 Come join our GMA SHRM Chapter group on LinkedIn! What is LinkedIn? It’s a business-oriented social networking site that can be used to connect with friends (old and new), find or post jobs and get information. In order to join, sign in at www.linkedin.com and keyword search GMA SHRM Chapter.

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Welcome New Members!

GMA SHRM welcomes the following members who joined our chapter in May of 2010!

Katie A. Beals

Director, Retention

Dean Health Plan

Allison Cooley


American Family Insurance

Mary Therese A. Endres

HR Assistant

Oakwood Village

Sara M. Errthum

HR Generalist

Care Wisconsin

Loren w. Kuzuhara

Teaching Professor

UW-Madison School of Business

Ann T. Mabis

Benefits & Payroll Administrator

WI Alumni Research Foundation

Jenny A. Nelson

Employee Services Supervisor

Care Wisconsin First, Inc.


Movin' Up

Have you started with a new company? Has your organization recently promoted you to a new position? Or do you want to recognize a new person or promotion within your department? If so, we want to hear about it. Send us an e-mail, and we’ll publish your good news in the next HR InTouch!

In Transition

If you are a member who is in between jobs, or who is currently employed but seeking new positions or career paths, write us a brief description of your skill set, areas of expertise, what you’re looking for, etc. Send us an e-mail. We’ll publish your information in the next HR InTouch.

What’s Cool in HR in the Greater Madison Area?

What’s going on in HR in your workplace?

Have you…

  • completed a major project,
  • implemented something new,
  • managed a change,

Is there something…

  • your company/dept does really well,
  • interesting about your company culture
  • that makes your company an employer of choice

We want to hear about it! Share it with your HR colleagues in HR InTouch. Send us an e-mail



HR InTouch Guidelines

Article Writing:

Do you have an interest in writing for the HR InTouch? We have an interest in learning more about your area of expertise!

Why should you volunteer? Top three reasons: 1) to share your knowledge and experiences to educate others; 2) to become more connected in the HR and Dane County communities; and 3) to contribute towards the advancement of GMA SHRM and the HR profession.

The first step is for you to choose a submission option: you can pre-submit an article to GMA SHRM at any time for us to use in any of the upcoming newsletters, you can sign up to write for a particular month, or we can put you on a list of people to contact in future months whenever we need articles.

Article length:

Because the HR InTouch is now in an online format, the size is flexible. The article should be engaging and hold readers’ attention. Include the core information in your article, and we will advise if it is too lengthy.


GMA SHRM is conscious not to allow solicitation through the articles, in an effort to protect the interests of our partners and members. The nature of the article should be educational (i.e., what are the business advantages of having a product like yours) or informational. Otherwise, if you truly are interested in advertising through the HR InTouch, you can work with our Marketing Committee. As a rule of thumb for article writing, if the submission relates to a for-profit event, or specifically markets your company (vs. your industry), it is an advertisement, and should be purchased. If it is a not-for-profit event that your company is hosting, or an announcement (i.e., a SHRM member recently joined your company), it is an acceptable addition to the HR InTouch content. If you have any questions related to the appropriateness of your submission, please contact us.

If you have questions, or to submit an article, contact GMA SHRM at chapteradmin@gmashrm.org .




Greater Madison Area SHRM, Inc.
2830 Agriculture Dr.
Madison, WI 53718
(608) 204-9814
fax: (608) 204-9818
Web: http://www.gmashrm.org/

© 2004; Greater Madison Area SHRM, Inc. All rights reserved.