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.

lexie-sims

Lexie Sims, SPHR, PHRi

Certification Council Chair

Lexie Sims is the Senior Talent Partner for Central Retail, On-Line, Logistics and the Customer Management Centers for Sainsbury's Group based in London. Previous roles include Director Talent and Resourcing, Europe and Head Office, for Intercontinental Hotels Group, 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. Sims’ early career was spent as a Finance Supervisor for Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University - Commerce and her MA in International Relations from Regent's University in London. She holds the SPHR and served as an Exam Forms Reviewer for the pilot HRMP (now SPHRi) exam. She has recently served in a dual role as an Exam Forms Reviewer for both the PHRi and SPHRi exams.

More »


Cigdem Ozdemir Evren

Cigdem Ozdemir Evren, SPHRi

Certification Council Vice Chair

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 »


Karen Petrini

Karen Petrini

Certification Council Public Member

Karen Petrini is the Senior Manager of Client Engagement in Sales Enablement for Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Prior to moving into her current role, Petrini spent 10 years in certification where she led the world-wide Exam Development, Lifecycle Operations and HP Press functions

More »


RafaelUzeda

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 »


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 »


Nelson Zivic

Nelson D. Zivic, MBA, SPHR, GPHR

HRCI Board Liaison

Nelson Zivic currently serves as the Head of HR for the Food Division at Newell Brands, based in Atlanta GA. He was previously the HR Senior Director for the Latin American Region, for Newell Brands. He was also an HR Leader at Dell, where he held increasingly responsible HR positions in their US and Latin American operations. Trained as a lawyer, Zivic began his career as a Labor Attorney in Argentina.

More »