2019 HR Leadership Award
Vicki Harlos, Linn Benton Lincoln ESD

Genuine. Positive. Caring. There were so many positive adjectives that were used to describe Vicki Harlos.
In their submission, 10 past and present educational peers, supervisors and employees contributed to a robust and inspiring nomination. Here are some words from her colleagues:

She is an amazing person! The qualities and skills she brings every day to her work are the epitome of what it is to be an effective and positive leader in HR. Her background in Social work and various job experiences, from direct service to students to program management, have contributed to her effectiveness in her current role of Chief Human Resources Officer, which she has performed for the last six years.

She is kind, fair, positive, understanding, a good listener, flexible, compassionate, and HAPPY!

Our nominee is a visionary leader who demonstrates expertise, compassion, creativity and high ethical standards in her work. She is transparent in her actions…she has built multiple positive, productive relationships through inclusive practice with classified, licensed and administrative employees, all constituent districts and at the state level.

She has served our ESD for 26 years. She is eternally upbeat, allows us to put family first, is friendly and is beloved. We want to recognize and honor her dedication to Oregon’s students and the 12 component districts that we serve.


Jollene “Jo” Shields, Human Resources Specialist, Forest Grove School District

Jo has worked for the Forest Grove School District for 27 years. After working in the business office for 23 years she took the leap into the crazy world of human resources.

 Jo is a systems thinker and has contributed so much in terms of creating processes for our office and district. Coming from the role of payroll specialist in the business office to human resources, she brings an amazing skill set, knowledge base, perspective and awareness that are all true assets when it comes to addressing most any situation in human resources. 

Jo puts the “human” in human resources when she meets with staff who are having challenging personal issues that need care and compassion. She has an incredible way of helping people navigate difficult life events by showing empathy and grace. After staff meet with Jo, they leave our office with a sense of comfort and relief.

She also brings valuable traits to the HR department and district. She has an unmatched attention to detail and a natural desire to get things done in a timely manner. Her proactive thinking puts us out in front of issues rather than having to clean them up on the back end. She takes on new challenges, including serving on the classified and certified bargaining teams for the first time ever, in the same year. Finally, her spirit of customer service is second to none! Jo welcomes everyone with a smile and greeting no matter what is going on or how her day is going. Staff see her as a person they can talk to and ask any question.