Community Search
Print Page   |   Sign In   |   Register
Meet Your Board of Directors
Share |

Meet Your Board of Directors

CRHRA’s members are served by an enthusiastic volunteer Board of Directors. They look forward to seeing you at CRHRA programs throughout the year, and eagerly seek your feedback and opinions about how our chapter can serve YOU, the HR professional and advance our profession in the eyes of the Capital Region community.

Chris Wessell, PHR - President 2016-2018

Chris has over 14 years of recruiting experience, and in 2009 co-founded Pinnacle, a staffing company specializing in providing talent to technology organizations.  In addition to spending most of his time recruiting, he also manages all HR responsibilities for the company.

Chris has an MBA from UAlbany with an HRIS concentration (2004) and has been HRCI certified since 2009. Chris has been an active CRHRA member for 16 years, starting in graduate school serving as President of the UAlbany SHRM student chapter, going on to be involved in several committees over the years and serving on the CRHRA board from 2008-2011.

Chris is currently a Vice Chair of the board of directors of Junior Achievement of Northeastern NY (and an active classroom volunteer), as well as a past board member of organizations such as the Schenectady County Community College Foundation, the Capital Region Recruiters Network, the UAlbany Alumni Association, the Capital Alliance of Young Professionals, the Stakeholders, GenNEXT, and Best Buddies New York. 

Joseph Koyon, PHR, SHRM-CP - Vice President

Joe is a Human Capital Generalist with Maximus, Inc. in Albany, where he supports call center and back office employees as a member of a passionate and dynamic HR team. His career has been characterized by a combination of broad operations management experience and human resource specialization in a variety of industries and environments, from managing operations and HR in retail settings to grooming the next generation of leaders in a pharmacy benefits management company.

Joe hold a Bachelor of Arts in English and a theater certificate from Siena College, as well as a Master of Science in Organization Management from Sage Graduate School. A member of CRHRA since 2008, Joe served on the Membership and Student Chapter committees before joining the Board in 2016. He is very excited to continue his service to CRHRA as Vice President.

  Jennifer O'Connor Teepe, PHR, SHRM-CP - Secretary

Jennifer has over 10 years of human resources experience in both the private and public sector, particularly in the areas of organizational analysis, compensation analysis, recruitment, labor relations, benefits administration, and FLSA determinations.  She is currently an Associate Director of Human Resources with the Office of General Services, where she manages recruitment and classification for a variety of programs, in addition to managing the HR department's data analytics collection and reporting for the agency.  

In her pre-human resources life, Jennifer was a journalism major at SUNY Oswego.  Jennifer has a Master's in Public Administration from SUNY Albany, and earned her PHR in 2011 and her SHRM-CP in 2015.

Nihla Zarook, SPHR - Treasurer

Nihla Zarook is the director of human resources, finance and administration for Albany Community Action Partnership (ACAP). Ms. Zarook holds a bachelor’s degree in human resources management and a master’s degree in public administration (MPA) with a specialization in organizational leadership and human resources management. She holds a designation as a Senior Professional in Human Resources from the Certification Institute of the Society for Human Resources Management. She also possesses an attorney-at-law qualification in Sri Lanka and is a graduate of the CRHR HR Leadership Class of 2013.

With experience in the United States and internationally, Ms. Zarook offers several years of human resources management and legal expertise. Her career experience includes positions in the banking, academic and nonprofit industries. Ms. Zarook is responsible for the organization’s overall human resources management and finance efforts including employee recruitment, benefits, and relations. She also serves as ACAP’s equal employment opportunity officer.

Shannon Smith, PHR
Membership Chair


Shannon has been in the recruiting and talent management industry for six years. She is a Regional Recruiter for Service Experts, a national leader in heating and cooling services, and manages talent acquisition efforts in the northeast.


She graduated from the University at Albany in 2013 with her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Business with a focus in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. She was an I-O Psychology Research Assistance and an active member of various organizations within the University.  Shannon has received her Professional in Human Resources (PHR) Certification.


Shannon became a member of CRHRA as a student and continued her involvement afterwards. She joined the Programs Committee in 2015 and co-chaired the Annual Holiday Party the past two years. After serving as Special Projects Chair in 2016-17, she was elected to the Board as Membership Committee Chair in 2017.

 Megan Colello
Government Relations Chair

Randy Kramer, PHR, SHRM-CP 
Programs Chair

Randy has over 10 years of diverse experience in the field of Human Resources. Currently employed by AngioDynamics, Inc., Randy oversees the company health, wellness and retirement benefit plans for over 1,200 employees in the US and Canada.

Randy hold a Bachelor's Degree from Boston University, and earned her PHR certification in June 2013, thanks in large part to the certification program offered through CRHRA. She is also certified as a SHRM-CP through the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) designation program. Randy has been a volunteer on the CRHRA Programs Committee since 2009 and has served on the Board of Directors since 2015.

Riana Millington 
Communications Chair

Riana is currently an HR Manager at the Center for Disability Services, where she provides human resources support in the areas of employee relations, workplace investigations, policy and procedure development, compensation, and compliance. The Center provides comprehensive health care, residential services, education, adult programming, service coordination and skilled nursing care to individuals with disabilities. In addition, the Center has a commercial printing, inserting, and mailing operation that is supported by a workforce of over 200 individuals with disabilities. The Center employs over 2,700 workers in over 80 locations.

Riana holds a Bachelor of Science in Management from Siena College. She achieved both her PHR and SHRM-CP certifications in May of 2016. Riana has been a volunteer with CRHRA since joining as a student member in 2011 and continued her involvement with CRHRA afterwards. She has been a member of the Communications Committee since 2013 and stepped into a leadership role as the Communications Chair for the 2016 Program Year. In this role, Riana provides oversight and direction for all aspects of CRHRA communications and public relations, including social media, website and email content, and the monthly newsletter release.

Matt Ingold 
Marketing Co-Chair

Matt serves as Benetech’s Director of Business Development, assisting employers in their transition to technology-driven HR administration and focused Talent Management Programs. He is a published writer on topics of HR technology and Human Capital Management. Leveraging years of talent-development and leadership experience in the military, Matt aims to introduce those same focused talent-cultivation and management methodologies to employers seeking a competitive advantage attainable through improved talent management. Active in the Capital Region, Matt also formerly chaired the Capital Region Chamber’s Executive Mentorship Program. A transplant to the Capital Region, Matt resides with his wife, Erin, and daughter, Avila, in Troy.

Mariah Ramundo
Marketing Co-Chair

  Courtney Schingledecker

Workforce Readiness Chair

Courtney Schingledecker is a motivated HR professional who lives in the Capital Region. In May of 2011, Courtney earned her bachelor’s degree from Le Moyne College with a dual major in Human Resources Management and Management and Leadership. Courtney joined Thoroughbred Advisors in May of 2015 as the Director of Selection and Development. In this role, she is utilizing her recruiting background to build a team of financial and insurance professionals, focusing in the Capital Region where three of their offices are located.

Courtney has been a member of Capital Region Human Resource Association since 2013. With a passion for connecting people and reducing our local unemployment rate, Courtney is the Chair of the Workforce Readiness Committee. She is responsible for organizing the committee to attend events throughout the year where they support job seekers in our area. Combining her positive attitude and optimistic outlook, Courtney is driven to succeed through empowering others to reach their full potential.

Azita Hirsa
Certification Chair

Azita Hirsa is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor of Management in the Huether Business School as the College of Saint Rose. Over the years, she has developed and taught a broad range of management courses at both the undergraduate and MBA levels, as a full-time faculty and an adjunct professor at various area colleges. Her main teaching and research focus include Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management.

Dr. Hirsa earned her Ph.D. at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lally School of Management and Technology. She also holds a M.Sc. in Management with a focus in Technology and Organizational Behavior and a B.Sc. in Management with a major in Management Information Systems and a minor in Social Psychology from the Lally School of Management and Technology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Azita has been a member of SHRM since 2007 and a member of CRHRA since 2013. She served as a member of the Public Relations committee in 2015, and has enthusiastically taken on the role of chair of the certification committee in August 2016. She has also served on the board of trustees at the Clifton Park_Halfmoon Public Library and has served as the chair of its Personnel Committee.



Katie Melnikoff
Diversity Chair

  Sarah Delaney Vero

Special Projects Chair


  Lauren Piche
Student Chapters Chair


Community Search
Sign In


Standing Committees

Student Chapters
Workforce Readiness




136 Everett Road
Albany, NY 12205

Google Map

Contact Us

Local: 518.694.4582