Faculty

Gary Hochman

Gary Hochman has worked in the development of organizations for over 25 years and has served in senior executive, line, and staff roles. As founder of The HR Matrix, his consulting business integrates strategy, work systems design, and team and individual performance to enhance organizational effectiveness. Throughout his career, Gary has led numerous projects helping executives and managers rapidly achieve results in a wide variety of demanding situations. His facilitation and leadership skills coupled with his business acumen and understanding of organization culture and change, have made him successful in a wide variety of interventions and situations, including start-ups, mature organizations, non-profits, and a diverse range of complex work systems. Working in close partnership with his clients, Gary designs highly interactive processes to support desired outcomes while building accountability and commitment throughout the workplace. Gary is the former vice president of HR at OCLI / JDSU and senior organization development consultant at Hewlett-Packard. He holds a B.A. in sociology and a M.A. degree - with a focus in organization development and training - from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management. In addition to his commitments to his family and the local non-profit community, he previously served on the faculty of the Organization Department Program at SSU for 6 years and USF for 4 years.

John Hyland

John Hyland began practicing as an attorney in 1995 and he has practiced exclusively in the area of employment law throughout his entire career. Prior to forming Rukin Hyland Doria & Tindall LLP, John held an Of Counsel position with Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker in the firm's San Francisco office where he advised and represented companies in State and Federal court actions covering all areas of employment law, including wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, disability law, employee privacy, employee leaves, and wage and hour issues. John started his career with Cook & Roos, LLP, a boutique firm in San Francisco specializing in employment law. John has represented clients in jury trials and arbitrations, and has argued cases before the California Court of Appeal. In addition to his litigation practice, John devotes a substantial part of his practice to counseling employers and employees in a wide range of employment law issues, working with executives transitioning in and out of companies, drafting contracts, policies and related employment documents, and conducting training seminars. John regularly partners with his corporate clients to develop business strategies that reduce the risk of legal liability. Law & Politics Magazine named John a Northern California Super Lawyer each year beginning in 2006 through 2012, and again in 2014. U.S. News - Best Lawyers in America has selected John for inclusion each year since 2012. John also has a mediation practice in which he serves as a mediator in matters involving employment law issues and a wide array of other disputes. He obtained certification as an employment law mediator from Cornell University's School of Industrial Relations. John serves as a panelist for the Sonoma County Superior Court's Civil Settlement Conference Program. John received his B.S. degree from Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He earned his juris doctorate degree from Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco, where he graduated in 1995 with highest honors and first in his class. While at Golden Gate, John served as a contributing author and associate editor of the Golden Gate Law Review.

golbou ghassemieh

golbou ghassemieh (No, she doesn't capitalize her name. You can ask her why in class) has 10 years of professional Human Resources management level experience. Her career began as a recruiter for a local executive search firm. She also spent time consulting with small businesses while working on her master's thesis, entitled Does My Business Need a Human Resources Function? A Decision-Making Model for Small and Medium Sized Firms, which was published in the New England Journal of Entrepreneurship. From there, she continued her Human Resources career in the challenging and fast paced retail industry, working for Target Corporation as an HR Manager. In 2008, golbou transitioned into the public sector as a Human Resources Analyst for the County of Sonoma's central HR department. She has been the Recruitment & Classification Manager at the County of Sonoma for three years, responsible for the County's employment division. golbou oversees professional and paraprofessional HR staff responsible for assisting the management of the County's 26 departments in navigating through all aspects of hiring, classification, early stages of performance management, internal training, compensation, and other topics. golbou has been an instructor with Sonoma State's HR Certificate program for three years and has also taught undergraduate Business students, as well as appeared as a guest lecturer since 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from U.C. Berkeley, a Master's in Business Administration with an emphasis in Human Resources from Sonoma State University, and certification in Senior Professional Human Resources and the International Public Management Association for Human Resources.

Vic McKnight

Victor (Vic) McKnight is a principal in EPIC's Petaluma, CA office where he is responsible for all aspects of developing and managing a book of business including the acquisition of new clients; strategic planning and program design; ensuring the quality, timeliness and accuracy of all deliverables and developing employee benefit communication programs. Vic has been in the insurance consulting and employee benefits program management business for 20 years. Vic spent the first ten years of his career representing insurance carriers and the last ten years as a broker representing clients throughout northern California. He brings extensive knowledge of the entire employee benefit arena, and is a frequent speaker to business groups on healthcare reform and health insurance trends. Vic also regularly contributes his perspective to articles appearing in North Bay Business Journal and other North Bay business publications. He is a graduate of St. Mary's College of California in Moraga, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Management. Vic is an active member of the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce and he serves on the Board of Trustees of the Mark West Union School District.

Susan Flannery Adams

Susan Flannery Adams is a lecturer in the School of Business and Economics at SSU, and coordinator of the HR Certificate Program. Susan brings over 15 years of hands-on HR experience in both non-profit and corporate environments with specific expertise in evaluating, designing, and implementing effective HR systems and programs that support the overall business needs of the organization. Since 2008 she has led Human Resources at PNI Sensor Corporation, an innovative sensor technology company in Santa Rosa, CA. Susan focuses on driving company performance through the integration of business culture, structure, human resources management, vision and strategy. Susan has also worked as an independent consultant providing project-based HR support to small and mid-sized local companies through the HR Matrix, and held senior positions at international consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton and Chicago-based senior housing and healthcare provider United Methodist Homes and Services. Susan holds a Bachelor's Degree in International Economics and Cultural Affairs from Valparaiso University, and a Master's Degree in Human Resources and Organization Development from the University of San Francisco. She holds a certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).

Jessica Jauregui

Jessica Jauregui is a dynamic Human Resources leader with over 13 years of accomplished leadership experience in all functional areas of Human Resources. She has been the HR Director at St. Joseph Health System since 2004, leading a team of 10 HR professionals and all functional areas of human resources including employee and labor relations, organizational development, recruitment and selection, employment and retention, training and development, and employee health services. She possesses extensive knowledge of labor and employment law, including the NLRA and collective bargaining agreements. Prior to her current role, she was the Employee and Labor Relations Specialist at St. Joseph Health System, providing employee and labor relations support to a client group of approximately 1500 employees. This included direct interaction with representatives from two labor unions in the areas of contract interpretation, grievance processes and dispute resolution. She also brings experience in the wine industry as she started her HR career at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates. Jessica has a BS in Business Administration from California State University-Chico and a Master's Degree in Human Resources and Organization Development from the University of San Francisco.

Mimi Lemanski

Mimi Lemanski is recognized as a leader in implementing effective initiatives for improving cultural understanding and awareness in the workplace. Mimi is fluent in Spanish and has worked across diverse industries with businesses and nonprofit organizations of all sizes, from Fortune 500s to small companies of less than 50 employees. She is dedicated to creating a stronger community through helping establish thriving companies that are based on sound principles and clear goals. Mimi was born and raised in Mexico City and also lived in Asia for several years. This affords her a unique, personal perspective of not only those cultures, but of cultural issues in general, which she is able to apply to the workplace. Mimi appreciates the particular considerations of establishing and maintaining a collaborative workforce and helps both leaders and staff understand one another, in terms of language as well as cultural differences. A highly effective bilingual and bicultural trainer in many subjects, Mimi is particularly well-versed in AB 1825-compliant harassment trainings, communication strategies and leadership skill development. She conducts supervisory and management, communication and team training programs in Spanish and English. Beyond cross-cultural understanding and facilitation, Mimi offers expertise in conflict resolution. She has studied mediation and negotiation at Sonoma State University and done volunteer work with Recourse, a local nonprofit mediation organization. Mimi's own cultural diversity is complemented by her positive, upbeat attitude that she brings to her business training, coaching and mediation. Mimi has passed the written portion of the California Court Interpreter Spanish Exam and volunteers at the Family Law Facilitator/Self Help Center in the Superior Court of Sonoma County. She translates documents, ranging from employee manuals to legal papers, and offers her expertise as an interpreter for individuals and organizations. Additionally, Mimi assists companies with strong Latino workforces understand and comply with complex immigration laws. An MS degree from the American Graduate School of International Management and a BS from Santa Clara University augment Mimi's credentials. Mimi brings cultural understanding, Spanish fluency, mediation training, solid education and deep experience to the classroom.