Yvonne Surowiec
Executive Chief People Officer

Yvonne Surowiec
1)      How did you get involved in your current career? Who/What inspired you in your career? 

Early in my career, I wanted to understand the people impacts on businesses and what makes a business successful. I’ve been fortunate to have many mentors and sponsors during my career. One of my first Chief Human Resource Officer’s took a risk on me and gave me an opportunity to lead the HR function. I was determined not to let him or the company down, and that was the first step in my career path to Chief Human Resource Officer.
How do you remain productive while managing your professional responsibilities?  
I constantly look for ways to re-energize. One of the ways I do that is by meeting our associates. It’s an honor to be the Chief People Officer. In my spare time I run, bike and ski when I can. I enjoy being outdoors — it’s incredibly re-energizing.

3)      What is the most critical issue facing our community?

Making progress in preventing the violent tragedies that have occurred over the last few years and getting at root cause issues. It’s not easy, but we can’t give up.

4)      What is your favorite place to visit in the community?

I enjoy visiting different neighborhoods and learning about different cultures. The history of what makes people unique and how their differences contribute to a society that is richer in values and understanding is very important to me. I have a deep appreciation of diversity in the broadest sense.

5)      Can you tell us something that may surprise us?

I started my career as a programmer – not your typical entry into HR.

6)      Why Valley?

When I met the leaders at Valley, I knew this was the culture I wanted to join. I learned there was an opportunity for me to make a difference in charting the future course for Valley with the team and our employees.