International Association of Women Recognizes Rume Joy Azikiwe, D.Mgt, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, as a 2020-2021 Influencer

Dr. Rume Joy Azikiwe, Executive Director of HR/Chief of Staff at the University of Pennsylvania, joins networking organization

The International Association of Women (IAW) recognizes Dr. Rume Joy Azikiwe as a 2020-2021 Influencer. She is acknowledged as a leader in Human Resources. The International Association of Women (IAW) is a global in-person and online networking platform with more than 100 local chapters, International Chapters and 1000+ in-person and virtual events.

Dr. Rume Joy Azikiwe, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, was enjoying a successful career in the mortgage industry until the 2008 recession hit. She knew she needed to pivot professionally and thought about moving into healthcare, a career both of her parents had worked in. While she admired what they did and wanted to continue their selfless acts of helping others, she knew healthcare was not for her. But she did eventually find her own new path.

"My dad passed soon before I would leave the mortgage industry," Dr. Azikiwe said. "When he passed, I decided to leave New York and move back to New Jersey to be closer to my mom. There was an opening in Human Resources at the company I was with-it was a way I could help others, a way that could prove selfless. I haven't looked back since!"

Six years ago, Dr. Azikiwe, who has a Doctorate in Strategic Leadership, joined the University of Pennsylvania as Executive Director of Human Resources (HR) and for the past year, she has also held the position of Chief of Staff. Her responsibilities include working closely with the VP of HR and others in university leadership on key university initiatives, directing HR communications, HR information management, and managing Global HR, the HR solution center and the new employee onboarding center.

"Employee relations is a skill I possess that I use to proactively identify and resolve concerns of managers and staff in a way that mitigates risk to the organization," she said. "I deal with it all, from labor disputes to managing conflict to how to be engaged in the workplace." She is also responsible for the HR information systems and data management, encourages teamwork and collaboration across all departments and project management, looking beyond day-to-day HR matters and providing resources where needed.

The most challenging aspects of her career, Dr. Azikiwe noted, is successfully handling how different every day is and managing the daily conflicts that arise when you're dealing with people of all ages. "But that is also the most rewarding aspect; no day is ever the same!" she added. As to her future goals, Dr. Azikiwe hopes to publish books, run her own HR organization, teach and consult full time.

Education & Accomplishments: Doctorate in Strategic Leadership, Thomas Jefferson and Philadelphia University; HR Person of the Year - Delaware Valley 2019; Society for Human Resources Management Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP); Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR)

Source: International Association of Professional Women

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Categories: Human Resources

Tags: Chief of Staff, HR, HR management, human resources, university leadership, University of Pennsylvania


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The International Association of Women (IAW) is a global in-person and online professional networking platform that provides nearly one million women with the forum, education, and services to thrive in an interconnected world.