Vice-President of Human Resources Lorraine Goffe announces her departure

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa .– Lorraine Goffe, Vice President of Human Resources and Director of Human Resources at Penn State since 2019, has announced her departure from the University, effective January 31, 2022. Goffe will assume the new role of Vice President for Human Resources and Director of Human Resources at Northwestern University in Illinois, February 1, 2022.

“It is bittersweet to say goodbye to Lorraine, who demonstrated strategic and compassionate leadership in supporting Penn State employees during her time in college. We have a lot to thank Lorraine and wish her the best in her future endeavors, ”said Penn State President Eric Barron. “In the service of Commonwealth employees, Lorraine’s dedication, creativity and thoughtfulness have been essential, particularly during the ongoing pandemic, and have helped position our operations and human resource offerings on a trajectory of continued success. “

As vice president of human resources, Goffe oversees Penn State’s human resources, which is made up of more than 250 staff who serve the university’s 37,000 full and part-time employees on Penn State campuses. . As a member of the President’s Council, she provides leadership across all HR departments and helps foster partnerships and collaboration between academic and administrative units in support of the University’s mission and strategic plan. .

“My stay at Penn State has been a wonderful experience. I am grateful to all of my HR colleagues and across the University, as well as for the continued support of management in our efforts to develop our HR vision and accomplish the University’s strategic priorities even in the face of the pandemic ”, Goffe said. “As I leave Penn State, I am excited for the opportunity to be able to make a positive impact at another great American university, and I also look forward to being closer to my family. “

While at Penn State, Goffe was instrumental in leading a series of initiatives essential to transform and streamline HR services and performance management; foster diversity, equity and inclusion in hiring and retention; and expand benefit options and leadership and development programs for employees across the state of Pennsylvania.

Among these efforts, the University continued to make improvements in hiring and customer service with the launch of Workday Recruiting to allow the University to move towards a more strategic approach to talent acquisition. and a new HR client service initiative to focus on service delivery and meeting the needs of the university community.

Under his leadership, Penn State also launched a Compensation Modernization initiative to deliver competitive compensation and clear career paths to staff; implemented a new paid parental leave benefit for all benefit-eligible staff to support working families in the Pennsylvania state community; launched a streamlined and fully automated tuition reduction application process for eligible spouses and dependent children; and developed a diversity, inclusion and belonging function in HR and a five-year strategic plan to help improve diversity and a sense of belonging among employees.

Among his accomplishments, Goffe also navigated during COVID-19, pivoting with his HR team to launch new resources, processes and protocols to support employees and maintain workplace health and safety, including remote working and return to work strategies.

Prior to joining Penn State, Goffe was Vice President of Human Resources at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and previously worked at Washington University in St. Louis for 15 years, where she held various leadership roles, including that of Vice -chancellor of human resources. Goffe began his career in the private sector and worked in healthcare as the director of human resources at St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

Goffe is a member of the board of directors of the American Research Universities HR Institute, which is made up of the human resources officers of the Association of American Universities.

Goffe received his BA in Business Administration from William Woods University and an MBA from National University. She has received professional HR certifications from the Human Resources Certification Institute and the Society for Human Resources Management.

The University plans to conduct a nationwide search for Goffe’s replacement and has appointed Jennifer Wilkes, current Assistant Vice President for Administration in the Office of the Senior Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses, as Acting Vice President. for Human Resources and Director of Human Resources, effective February 1, 2022.

Wilkes, who worked at the University for over 20 years, was previously Director of Human Resources for Auxiliary and Business Services and Director of Employee Relations. In her current role, she provides leadership in human resources, compliance, affirmative action, communications, safety, security and emergency response. Wilkes received both a master’s degree in social studies and industrial relations and a bachelor’s degree in hospitality, catering and institutional management from Penn State. She previously worked for Walt Disney World Company and The Shaner Hotel Group.


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