Two Earn Honor as HR Professionals of the Year


Sometimes two is better than one and that’s especially true when it comes to recognizing two long-time leaders in the field of human resources with one of the industry’s top honors.

On Wednesday, Cari L. Kline of Grundfos Americas Corporation (Indianapolis) and Kendra L. Vanzo of Old National Bank (Evansville) were named the 2017 Ogletree Deakins Human Resources Professionals of the Year during the Indiana Chamber’s 53rd Annual Human Resources Conference & Expo in Indianapolis.

Kline and Vanzo received the honor that is given annually to a human resources professional that provides lasting impact through the implementation of best practices, organization design and effectiveness and accomplishment of the company’s strategic direction.

This is only the second time the award has been bestowed upon two deserving individuals; the first was in 2015.

Also honored at the luncheon and receiving the Award of Excellence was Lori L. Gooding, vice president of human resources for Buckingham Companies (Indianapolis).

Cari L. Kline

Cari L. Kline
Kline is regional director of human resources, Americas operations for Grundfos Americas Corporation and is based in Indianapolis. Grundfos is a $4.5 billion company and global leader in advanced pump solutions and water technology, with headquarters in Denmark.

After joining Grundfos in 2012 as human resources director for the company’s Peerless Pump business unit in Indianapolis, she was promoted into her current position and oversees human resources for all of the Grundfos operations facilities in North and South America. As a strategic business partner, Kline provides leadership on a broad range of issues and has implemented key initiatives throughout the company’s Americas operations.

“I am flattered to be honored (with the award),” Kline adds. “I think HR is one of the most unique and challenging professions in today’s business environment. The variety of opportunities and issues that present themselves – sometimes even in a single day – can be astonishing and I find that hugely motivating. I learned many years ago to stop saying, ‘Now I have seen it all!’”

Kline holds an MBA from Ball State University and an undergraduate degree from Purdue University.

Kendra L. Vanzo

Kendra L. Vanzo
Vanzo, executive vice president of associate engagement and integration for Old National Bank, has been with the company since 1994. Old National Bank has $14.9 billion in assets and more than 200 branches in Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Kentucky and Illinois.

Old National Bank President and CEO Bob Jones nominated Vanzo for the award. His nomination letter highlights several initiatives in the past year that Vanzo led for the company, including the largest merger in the company’s history. She also implemented a system to simplify training and career development, and she is credited for spearheading the creation of an employer-sponsored health clinic for associates and families.

In addition, Vanzo leads the company’s mission to hire and retain diverse individuals, including active military, veterans and individuals with disabilities.

She credits her team and the values at Old National Bank for her honor.

“This recognition is reflective of the contributions of our entire HR team and the people-first, ethical culture of Old National. I am humbled and honored to accept it on behalf of our HR team and company,” Vanzo offers.

She received an MBA from the University of Southern Indiana and her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois.

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