VIDEO: SmashUps with Mary Faulkner – The HR Fallout of Charlottesville

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This month on SmashUps, Tim Sackett sits down with Mary Faulkner, Director of Talent Acquisition at Denver Water. In light of the recent events in Charlottesville and the subsequent HR fallouts, Tim and Mary break down the decisions HR leaders have to make when one of their employees is identified at a controversial rally.

Click on the video below to get all the details!

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Tim Sackett
Tim Sackett SPHR, is the ultimate Mama’s Boy!  After 15+ years of successfully leading HR and Talent Acquisition departments for Fortune 500s and smaller technical firms, Tim took over running the contingent staffing firm HRU Technical Resources in Lansing, MI. Serving as the Executive Vice President, Tim runs the company his mother started over 30 years ago, and don’t tell Mom, but he thinks he does a better job at it than she did!  Check out his blog at Because he's got A LOT to say, and FOT just isn't enough for him.


  1. Laurel Ditson says:

    Great to see/hear both of you, and addressing the issues of legal activities conducted off duty, and how Colorado employers cannot terminate someone on those grounds.

    You went slightly askew when using Catholic Health Initiatives as an example, and I wanted to set the record straight. I worked there from 2013 to 2016. Yes, they are clearly a Catholic institution, and they have a faith-based mission. For example, Physicians who work for CHI hospitals must follow the Directives of the Catholic church, such as not ending pregnancies and other specific practices. Even then, though, CHI NEVER asks if you are Catholic, in the hiring process or otherwise. I am not Catholic, nor were many of my co-workers. We had all faiths represented. We were simply asked to support the mission of the organization, which is to spread the healing ministry of the Gospel, and translates to bringing healthcare to all who need it – regardless of their belief, finances, or other factors.

    Additionally, CHI is probably the most inclusive organization for which I have ever worked. For example, the LGBT population is warmly received, women and people of color are well represented at all levels from the CEO to the newest hourly workers, and all are respected and able to “come as they are.” It is an interesting study in culture, as its core is a traditional faith background many would see as rigid, yet its day to day actions are truly reflective of today’s inclusive society.

    Charlottesville and its aftermath have raised a new level of awareness that we should embrace. We are quick to judge, and assume motive, based on sound bites and video clips. Mary’s points regarding doing your homework, and comparing the results to what your company rules (and State law) allow, are on the mark. If you have a bad apple, a video clip is probably not your first or only indicator. Those of us who work in states where legal off-duty activities are protected have to do our homework, and seek creative solutions. Those whose states do not mandate this protection would be well-served to follow the same steps.

    Great interview, Tim and Mary!


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