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Training Committee
About the Committee
One of the pillars of the IPELRA, training is key to IPELRA’s standing as the premiere organization for public sector labor professionals representing the management side of the table. IPELRA training is conducted by top-quality presenters who are hands on practitioners in both labor law and human resources fields. The value is great, and the fees for training are set with a true eye toward tight budgets.

   Congratulations to the IPELRA Training Committee:
Winners of the 2017 National PELRA Pacesetter Award
  IPELRA Training Committee
  Pictured above: The IPELRA Training Committee proudly displays their 2017 Pacesetter Award. This award was accepted by the Training Committee current chair, Leslie Rienzie-Barry, and previous Committee Chairs Patty Hoppenstedt, and Wendy Bednarek, along with DeSha Kalmar, lead developer and coordinator of the Employment Law Seminar.    

Committee Activities
The largest committee of all IPELRA committees, the training group plans a calendar of seminars and events throughout the year, with the overall goal of offering 8–10 half-day or full-day programs throughout the year. In addition, the Committee plans a three-day Annual Training Conference, as well as a one-day Public Sector Employment Law Seminar, both of which are not-to-miss events.

Join the Committee
All of this takes work. Interested in serving on this rewarding committee? Contact Secretariat Debi Stensland or Chairperson Leslie G. Rienzie-Barry.

Training Committee members meet monthly at various facilities. The meeting agenda is sent out in advance and includes discussions and decisions that need to be made on professional development for IPELRA members. Training Committee members are asked to volunteer to coordinate monthly training events. This includes: coordinating with presenters, facilities and others. Training Committee coordinators manage the onsite registration process, and ensuring a positive training experience with participants. In addition, training committee members are asked to participate in the full day of planning the agenda for the annual conference and volunteering to serve as moderators for the Annual Conference.


  • Leslie G. Rienzie-Barry, Will County, Chairperson
  • Roxanne Bonner, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, Vice Chairperson  
  • Ioana Ardelean, Village of Itasca
  • Kay Argo, Village of Lemont
  • Christine Bajor, Village of Wheeling
  • Christa C. Ballowe, Village of Skokie
  • Megan Fulara, City of Crest Hill
  • Sylvia Gomez, Rock Island County
  • Patty Hoppenstedt, City of DeKalb
  • Chrissy Hoover, Village of Huntley
  • Pam Jackson, Village of Palatine
  • Tameika Jones, City of Waukegan
  • DeSha Kalmar, City of Lake Forest
  • Heather McGovern, Village of Barrington
  • Julie Meyer, City of Crystal Lake
  • Michelle Robbins, Village of Brookfield
  • Robert J. Smith, Jr., Clark Baird Smith LLP