The Capital Area Public Human Resources Association is a board-governed organization with most administrative and procedural decisions made by an executive board. Substantive or policy decisions are presented to the membership via ballot. The Board meets monthly and its meetings are open to any member wishing to attend.

The mission of CAPHRA is to:

  • promote excellence through the ongoing development of professional and ethical standards and career development;
  • enhance the image of human resource professionals by recognizing their contributions to the public service;
  • foster fairness and equity by promoting application of merit principles and equal opportunity for all;
  • encourage research and development in human resource management;
  • promote communication and sharing of information among human resources professionals; and
  • provide a forum for persons interested in public human resource management.

The chapter’s fiscal/program year runs from July 1st to June 30th each year. Terms of office for elected officials run concurrently with the program year. The Executive Board consists of four officers (President, President-Elect, Secretary, and Treasurer) and six Board Members (four elected for a two-year term, and two appointed by the incoming President for a one-year term). Chairs of standing committees are appointed at the beginning of each program year. Standing committees include Programs, Recognition/Scholarship, SERV, and Membership. Ad hoc committees include Nominating, Bylaws, Financial Review, and others that are deemed necessary by the Board.

CAPHRA Programs

The chapter holds program meetings between the months of September and May. The goal of these programs is to bring the most timely topics impacting Commonwealth HR professionals.  Meeting topics keep members informed of novel or current management techniques and personnel activities; topics vary based on shifts in the HR universe. HR consolidation?  Diversity and Inclusion? Change management? Members heard it first.  Speakers are generally from state and federal government, private industry, consulting firms, and academic institutions.

Presentations were made on the following topics during the 2017-18 program year:

  • Employment Law Update for the HR Professional
  • Intentional Conversations At Work
  • Creative HR Solutions:  It’s About Your Outsight More Than Your Insight
  • Taking Back Your HR Work Space with the Lean 5S Tool
  • Spring Conference – The HR Imperative: Innovate!

In addition to monthly programs, Membership recruitment socials are usually held in August and a holiday networking event are typically held in November or December.  For deeper dives into key topics, CAPHRA hosts either a full day Spring conference or half-day summits.

CAPHRA Activities

CAPHRA members continue to find ways to give back to our community.  Previous events have supported the Central PA Food Bank, Dress for Success, and the Lebanon VA Veterans' Hospital.

History of CAPHRA

In March 1966, a committee was established to assemble materials and sample bylaws to present a formal proposal to the Public Personnel Association. On April 26, 1966 eighty-two individuals joined the organization. On May 25, 1966 the Association formally approved the creation of the chapter, then known as the Harrisburg Area Public Personnel Association.

It was seven years later on January 1, 1973 that the chapter became affiliated with the International Personnel Management Association. The new affiliation was a result of a merger of the Public Personnel Association and the Society for Personnel Administration. The Chapter was known as the Harrisburg Area International Personnel Management Association (HAIPMA). At the conclusion of the 2002-2003 program year, the chapter added Human Resources to its name to be consistent with the name of its national organization, and became known as HAIPMA-HR.

A scholarship program was started in 1983 to recognize outstanding high school seniors who aspired to careers in public administration. That program was restructured in 1996 to offer scholarships to chapter members who are furthering their education. The "Have a Heart" food drive was started in 1996 as a community service activity. HAIPMA-HR has hosted five Eastern Region Conferences: in 1974, 1984, 1993, 2000, and 2005. At the 1998 Eastern Region Conference, the chapter was awarded - for the first time - the Eastern Region Outstanding Chapter award. The Chapter received the Eastern Region Most Improved Chapter award at the 1999 Eastern Region Conference.

In 2007, IPMA-HR announced changes in its membership structure that would have required all HAIPMA-HR members to become IPMA-HR members, which would have increased dues considerably for all HAIPMA-HR members. After careful consideration, the Harrisburg chapter chose to become independent and continue its fine traditions under a new name, Capital Area Public Human Resources Association, as of July 1, 2008. 

In 2016, CAPHRA celebrated its 50th Anniversary.  While the organization has changed and adapted to the times, one thing remains the same - our commitment to the professional growth of our community of HR professionals.  We know how hard you work and how much you do for the Commonwealth.  We are proud to work side-by-side with you, to provide you tools and skills to make your work easier, to celebrate your successes, and to be a support network.  CAPHRA members continue to be the best of the best in the HR community.

~ The CAPHRA Board

Click here to view a list of the Past Presidents of HAIPMA-HR and CAPHRA.





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