Faculty

Shannon Clawson

Shannon Clawson is an associate attorney with Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. Her practice centers on employment litigation, and ranges from matters involving claims of wrongful termination to disability discrimination and accommodations, sexual harassment, retaliation and wage and hour class actions. Shannon also provides advice and counsel to employers seeking guidance on new laws and workplace issues. She graduated cum laude from Claremont McKenna College with a dual B.A. in Literature and Economics and received her J.D. from U.C. Davis School of Law.


Susan Garcia

Susan Garcia has over 20 years of experience managing and developing compensation programs, primarily in the financial services industry. She has held management roles in compensation, benefits and recruiting, and has worked as an independent consultant. She holds a bachelor's degree in organizational development from University of San Francisco.


Scott Hernandez

Scott Hernandez is a certified Professional of Human Resources with 20+ years of experience in the field of Human Resources and Talent Acquisition. Scott was the VP of Talent at KIXEYE: a super, high-growth social gaming company. He is passionate about working with early stage and high-growth companies to establish a Talent Acquisition function built for velocity and culture. Previously, he worked at Zynga as VP of Global Talent Acquisition. Now, he supports eBay, Inc. as their Executive Talent Acquisition Partner.


Patricia Hyland

Patricia Hyland, M.S., has more than 30 years of experience in education. She is currently the Director of Equity and Employee Relations for the Foothill – De Anza Community College District. Her equity-focused approach to education garnered national attention when she and her team removed barriers to access for students wishing to enroll in Advanced Placement courses at the high school level. The effort was recognized by White House Cabinet Secretary Broderick Johnson, who headed President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper for achieving racial parity in the AP program.


Arlene LaBorde

Arlene LaBorde is VP of Human Resources for MobiTV in Emeryville, CA. She has over 20 years' experience working in Human Resources in a variety of positions, with much of her career spent leading HR systems initiatives both as an employee and as a systems consultant. She believes good practices and system efficiencies create the foundation for success of all HR programs. Arlene's prior companies include Systems Management, Inc., EMC, DHL, and Pacific Bell. She holds a bachelor's degree in Human Relations from Golden Gate University.


Donna Scarola

Donna Scarola holds a Bachelor's in Social and Behavior Sciences from Seton Hall University and a Master's degree in Strategic Human Resources Management from Georgetown University. From her work in psychiatric settings, technology companies including Apple, Workday and now Reflektive, her passion for understanding people deeply has driven her into the space between business and psychology. She has completed a clinical psychiatric affiliation for the University of Medicine and Dentistry, and observed at Johns Hopkins Psychiatric Unit. During her day time hours, she is a product manager who creates and designs performance management software, previously at Workday, now at Reflektive. She also runs a performance poetry group called (For)words in the Bay Area.


Dawn Sharifan

Dawn Sharifan is a life-long learner and a passionate student. As a Human Resources (or People Operations) professional, with over 15 years of experience in both public and private organizations, Dawn has worked with start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. Industry experience includes legal and financial services, tech, media, and renewable energy. Dawn currently leads People Operations at Slack Technology. Since 2014, she has been teaching aspiring HR professionals at San Francisco State University, reminding them of the benefits of working in the HR field. Dawn earned her MBA from St. Mary's and her pilot's license from the FAA, and lives in the East Bay with her best friend/husband and mini the cat (who is also a very good friend).


Chad R. Thigpen

Chad R. Thigpen, M.A., PHR, has over 15 years of experience in training and organization development in a variety of industries. His expertise includes managing professional development programs, facilitating strategic planning meetings and training programs, coaching, and change management. Chad currently serves as a Learning and Development Business Partner for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, where he primarily develops and manages professional development programs.


Jonathan McNeil Wong

Jonathan McNeil Wong is a partner with the Oakland-based law firm of Fitzgerald LLP. His practice areas include employment law, labor relations, immigration and nationality law, employment and business litigation, and business counseling. He is AV rated by Martindale Hubbell and has been named one of Northern California's "SuperLawyers" annually since 2008.


Larry Yok

Larry T. Yok, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, is a management consultant in human resources, labor relations, and economic development. Larry has more than 40 years’ experience managing and consulting in the fields of human resources and labor relations. His career includes senior executive positions in state and local governments and in the utilities and healthcare industries in which he directed finance and operations functions in addition to human resources management. He holds a BS in public administration from the University of Oregon (Eugene, OR), an MBA in finance from the University of Puget Sound (Tacoma, WA), and a PhD in development studies from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (Port Elisabeth, SA).