Harper Slade, is named in honor of our CEO’s paternal grandmother, Lenora Harper Robinson and maternal grandmother, Ernestine Johnson Slade who were both trailblazing women in their communities, in their workplaces and in their homes. Both of these stalwart mavericks were VERY much about the business of being black and assured their children, our CEO’s parents, were similarly focused. The lens through which our CEO views racial equity is very much derived from the legacy of her grandmothers and her parents.
Ernestine Johnson Slade
Lenora Harper Robinson
Nikki’s experience includes serving as senior vice president –Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Personnel Cabinet Secretary for the Commonwealth of Kentucky (youngest and first black female gubernatorial appointee to this post), Chief Human Resources Officer for Charter Schools USA (FL), Vice Chancellor of Human Resources for Maricopa Community Colleges (AZ), Senior HR Executive, Philip Morris USA (VA) and Georgia-Pacific Corp. (GA) and other positions in both the health care and legal fields.
Having eighteen years as an HR executive and employment attorney, Nikki is experienced in driving accelerated cultural change in public and private sectors, creating and implementing innovative organizational development, inspiring commitment to vision, experience in OD, Leadership Design and Delivery, EEO/AA, Labor Relations, Employment Law, Employee Relations, Training and Development, strategic planning, recruitment and retention, and labor negotiations.
She has worked in more than ten (10) sectors including manufacturing, consulting, consumer goods, health care, media, law, government, higher education, and banking, and has led organizations in both the public and private sector. Through her work and strong local and national board memberships, Nikki is recognized as an accomplished thought leader in progressive HR strategies and in advancing diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism, corporately and civically.
She enjoys a strong and credible personal brand where she exudes relatability, accessibility, and diplomacy in her engagements with stakeholders from varied backgrounds.
Jerese loves to apply responsive design principles to every facet of her human capital work. She is fueled by impactful work that will yield transformational results for organizations and generations that will come after. With a Bachelor’s in Management and a Master’s in Adult Education, her specialties include training, coaching, employee engagement, employee skill assessment and enhancement, programming, problem solving, responsive design principles, system optimization, change management, conflict resolution, and business model conceptualization. Jerese is a HR Professional who thrives on helping others, paying it forward and going above and beyond with each and every task. Enthusiastic about growing and gaining new skills along the way, Jerese values learning from others, forging genuine connections, and hearing about other people's passions and how to help. She also believes in getting stuff done but smiling, laughing, and even dancing along the way! Jerese believes that DEI, especially racial equity, is integral part of an organization’s success.
Jaeden was born and raised in Texas, but fell in love with the Bluegrass State while attending Berea College, where she studied Spanish and served as Program Manager for the school’s Hispanic Outreach Project. Experienced as an educator with a demonstrated history of working in the primary/secondary education, Jaeden holds a Master of Science in Education from the University of Pennsylvania through the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program. Skilled in public speaking, management, teamwork, leadership, and project management, Jaeden comes to Harper Slade with significant experience in curriculum design, non-profit sector work and a deep passion for racial equity.