Chicago SHRM Wins SHRM Pinnacle Award for Timely Racial Leadership Educational Program

Last week, SHRM (the Society for Human Resource Management) awarded Chicago SHRM, the 2020 Pinnacle Award in recognition of its high achievements advancing the profession of human resources.

The Pinnacle Award is the most prestigious honor SHRM state councils and chapters can receive. Created in 1991, the award honors programs that exceed the standard activities of SHRM affiliates in enhancing HR management. Chicago SHRM was one of 12 human resource organizations—out of more than 600—from across the country to win the award in 2020.

“SHRM’s chapters and state councils are among the most dedicated and passionate professionals, period, and play an integral role in elevating and advancing the practice of human resources,” said SHRM President and CEO, Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., SHRM-SCP. “From educational series, community support, mentor programs, and more, each winner made a real difference for our profession and in their communities at a time of turmoil and uncertainty.”

“2020 has proven how impactful and absolutely necessary HR professionals are to our organizations,” says Courtney Templin, Chicago SHRM President. “I could not be prouder of Chicago SHRM and our entire HR community for how everyone has adapted to this year. This award specifically is recognition of the safe, vulnerable space Chicago SHRM has created to enable our community of HR professionals to support and learn from one another.”

The award is presented to Chicago SHRM recognizing the five-part education series, “Leading Through a Racial Crisis.” The program, which reached over 300 attendees, provided support, education, and opportunity for healing and a path forward that the Chicago community needed after the murder of George Floyd and the national demands for racial equality. The series has paved the way for conversations on allyship to answer the question of what HR can and should do to respond to racism and inequality in the workplace. It has created a community where voices can be heard and stories can be shared, and has opened hearts, enlightened minds and sparked action. Chicago SHRM continues to be laser-focused on providing education and development for the area’s HR professionals.

Winning programs, selected from over 75 applications, receive a $1,000 prize given by Paychex Inc., which is the sponsor of this year’s Pinnacle Awards. The awardees were recognized at SHRM’s Volunteer Leaders Business Meeting, November 17-20.

Winners of the 2020 SHRM Pinnacle Award are:

California State Council of SHRM
Charlotte Area SHRM (NC)
Chicago SHRM (IL)
Greater Cincinnati HRA (OH)
HRA of Greater Oak Brook (IL)
Kentucky SHRM State Council

Louisville SHRM (KY)
Oregon SHRM
Prince William SHRM (VA)
Stateline SHRM (IL)
Sussex-Warren HRMA (NJ)
Tri-State SHRM Chapter (TX)

To learn more about Chicago SHRM, visit

Chicago SHRM Contact: Chicago SHRM Headquarters at and 312-368-0188

SHRM Contact: Julie Hirschhorn at and 703-842-5152

About Chicago SHRM
Chicago SHRM was founded in 1948 by 28 Chicago area ‘personnel’ professionals. As the Chicago chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), Chicago SHRM represents Chicago’s vibrant and diverse human resource professionals that are leading business today. From its beginnings in 1948 of only 28 members, Chicago SHRM has grown into a thriving organization of over 1,000 members today. Through dozens of educational programs and diverse development opportunities, everything we do is guided by our credo, “Igniting Business, Elevating Careers, Building Community.”

About SHRM
SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management, creates better workplaces where employers and employees thrive together. As the voice of all things work, workers and the workplace, SHRM is the foremost expert, convener and thought leader on issues impacting today’s evolving workplaces. With 300,000+ HR and business executive members in 165 countries, SHRM impacts the lives of more than 115 million workers and families globally. Learn more at and on Twitter @SHRM.