Mississippi HR: Cynthia Render-Leach: 2013 Mississippi Spirit of HR

by: Kyle Jones


Mississippi SHRM names two deserving HR professionals as either the Mississippi Human Resource Professional of the Year or the Mississippi Spirit of HR. It was my pleasure, as the 2012 recipient, to name my Mississippi SHRM colleague as the new Mississippi Spirit of HR recipient for 2013.

About Cynthia Render-Leach

Volunteerism has been a part of Cynthia’s professional career prior to joining SHRM.  She has worked – or currently works – with the following organizations:

  • United States Tennis Association
  • Jackson County Community Tennis Association
  • Breast Cancer Crusaders
  • USM Staff Council
  • College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA)
  • Others

Mississippi HR Conference, HR to Who, Kyle Jones HR, Mississippi SHRMCynthia was challenged to create a new program that would be instrumental to the overall development for one of her previous employers.  She developed a training program for managers and supervisors that was the first in-house MDT (Management Development Training) program used by the organization.  This 10-week comprehensive program encompassed various aspects of a variety of supervisory skills.

She recently had the opportunity  to meet the individual who is coordinating the program.

Cynthia stated:

She shared that she was glad to meet the person who initially launched the program.  It was humbling to learn that my initial works have had continued success and have become a cornerstone for their employee development.


In my opinion, the use of the word “humbling” in the quote above is a contributing factor for her Spirit of HR award.


Winning the Spirit of HR Award

Mississippi HR, Mississippi HR Conference, Kyle Jones, HR to WhoI wasn’t left standing at the proverbial alter but I was left standing at the podium on the morning of May 01, 2013.   With award in hand I spoke about the award, how much it meant to me to receive it in 2012 and proceeded to speak about Cynthia.  While I don’t recall what I said exactly, I tried to give a few hints to her identity before revealing the name.

Then, I made the reveal.

There was only one problem.  There was no Cynthia!

Where was she?   She wasn’t getting coffee?  Did she over-sleep?  We were at the Beau Rivage..was she down at the casino?


She, along with several others, was hard at work making sure the conference was a success.  Again…. Mississippi HR Spirit!

Within three-five minutes Cynthia was in the room and joining me on the stage to receive her award.  It was my pleasure to present the award to Cynthia and stand beside her for pictures – even though I personally don’t like to have my picture taken!

Congratulations, Cynthia on an award well deserved!

MSSHRM, Mississippi SHRM, Mississippi HR Conference, HR to Who, Kyle Jones

Additional Information

For more information on Cynthia, visit her LinkedIn profile by clicking here.

For more information about Judy Nail, the 2013 Mississippi Professional of the Year, click here.

For more information about these two awards and to learn more about Mississippi SHRM, click here.

For more information about the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), click here.



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