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Mary V. L. Wright leads one of the SHRM Foundation’s four pillars of work: Skill Building - Preparing People for Today’s and Tomorrow’s Workplaces. A critical part of that effort is leading the implementation of the US DOL funded HR Registered Apprenticeship Program, the first national HR apprenticeship program. As such, she is responsible for all parts of the program – development, marketing, sales, budget and evaluation. In addition, she leads the Foundation’s work on the role of credentials in achieving an organization’s diversity, equity and inclusion goals and is an integral part of the team in promoting the inclusion of untapped talent in the workforce.
Ms. Wright has many years of experience connecting the public and private sectors in municipal finance, government affairs, and workforce development as a project leader, facilitator and subject matter expert.
Previously, Ms. Wright was a director at Jobs for the Future (JFF) where she designed and supervised the completion of foundation, government and employer-funded projects on topics including: expanding employability skills, developing apprenticeship and work-based learning strategies, utilizing labor market information to determine educational focus, better hiring and training practices for people with disabilities, improving entry level jobs for the retail sector, determining the correct educational focus for specific geographic areas including the state of Florida and Columbus Ohio, and an in-depth analysis of green infrastructure jobs.
Prior to joining JFF, she served as director at The Conference Board in New York City, driving its work in workforce readiness, business, and education partnerships. She also focused on improving the employment outcomes for people with disabilities through research and convenings. Ms. Wright co-authored or acted as project director on several key Conference Board reports regarding workforce readiness skills, including Are They Really Ready to Work? and The Ill-Prepared Workforce.
She serves on the Board of Directors of the Institute for Work & the Economy and the Fort Myers Beach Community Foundation.
Ms. Wright received a Master of Business Administration in public/nonprofit management from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Affairs from Connecticut College.