Certification Council

Supporting the mission of the HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®), the HRCI Certification Council oversees the development, maintenance and administration of certification programs for the human resource profession, both in the U.S. and globally.

Nelson Zivic

Nelson D. Zivic, GPHR, SPHR

Certification Council Chair

Nelson Zivic currently serves as Senior HR Director, Latin American Region, for Newell Brands, based in Mexico City. He was previously the Latin America HR Lead for Dell, where he held increasingly responsible HR positions in their US and Latin American operations. Trained as a lawyer, Zivic began his career as an attorney in Argentina.

More »


Mary F. Browne

Public Member

Mary Browne is currently the Director for Test Development at the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners, based in Chicago, where she oversees activities related to exam development and exam publication.

More »

Lexie Sims

Lexie Sims, SPHR, PHRi

Certification Council Vice Chair

Lexie Sims is the Director Talent and Resourcing, Europe, for Intercontinental Hotels Group, based in London. Previous roles include Global Human Resource Business partner with the retail chain Jack Wills, various senior-level HR consulting roles, and senior HR positions with AT&T and Cellular One.

More »

Cigdem Ozdemir Evren

Cigdem Ozdemir Evren, SPHRi

Certification Council Member

Cigdem Ozdemir Evren is the Head of HR for Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline Project (TANAP), a joint venture of SOCAR, BP and BOTAS. Based in Ankara, she was previously the Organizational Development and Talent Management Coordinator for SOCAR Türkiye and Organizational Development Unit Manager for FNSS Savunma Sistemleri A.Ş.

More »

Carlos Jon

Carlos Jon, DBA, SPHR, PHRca, GPHR

Certification Council Member

Dr. Jon is a Divisional Human Resource Manager for AutoZone where he plays a vital and strategic role in his organization, having full responsibility for leading the HR strategy for the assigned division. This position supports nine regional managers across eleven states, providing multi-site and multi-state experience.

More »

Jonathan Pearce

Jonathan Pearce, GPHR

HRCI Board of Directors Liasion

Jonathan Pearce is an owner of Deloitte Tax LLP, New York, and he leads Deloitte’s Global Mobility Transformation (GMT) practice and serves in a number of leadership roles. He has donated time to the Institute as a member of the Forms Review Panel for the GPHR certification.

More »

John Valaro

John D. Varlaro, PhD, SPHR, GPHR

Certification Council Member

Dr. Varlaro is Associate Professor, Human Resource Management at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. He also served as Chair of the Department of Management. Dr. Varlaro is a frequent contributor to Human Resource and Strategic Management textbooks.

More »


Rafael Uzeda, PHR, GPHR, CHRP

Certification Council Member

Rafael Uzeda is the Manager of Human Resources Operations at CPPIB (formally the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board) in Toronto. His previous roles include various HR management roles in the US, Canada and Brazil. He began his career as an Operations Consultant for Lucent Technologies.

More »