Queen Creek’s Gardner honored for professional excellence in HR

Queen Creek Assistant Town Manager Bruce Gardner (Courtesy of the town of Queen Creek)

Queen Creek Assistant Town Manager Bruce Gardner (Courtesy of the town of Queen Creek)

Queen Creek Assistant Town Manager Bruce Gardner has received the Ann Byrnes SPHR Award for Professional Excellence from the Arizona Society for Human Resource Management.

The award honors an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the human resource profession, serving as a role model and setting standards for others. Mr. Gardner received the award for the development of the Learning and Development Plan, a collaborative effort between the town and Grand Canyon University, according to a press release.

“Bruce Gardner is extremely deserving of this award,” Queen Creek Mayor Gail Barney said in the release. “He provides strategic leadership for his staff, and for the organization. The Learning and Development Plan is just one example of Bruce’s innovative practices and ability to motivate others. The town is fortunate to have Bruce serving our wonderful community.”

Through the Learning and Development Plan, doctoral students at Grand Canyon University provide consultation to the town in the area of industrial/organization psychology. Doctoral students identify projects and research solutions, which are then presented to the town along with a final report, according to the release.

Projects have included an employee suggestion program, family medical leave and military leave, among others. The collaboration provides doctoral level research and recommendations at no cost to the town, and practical experience for the students.

“Students have described the projects with the town of Queen Creek as the highlight of their education at Grand Canyon University. They are able to apply their knowledge to the real needs of the town,” Robert Hess, professor at Grand Canyon University, said in the release. “Bruce has done an excellent job coordinating the program with the consultation teams and works well with the students. His approach is excellent as it is one of a teacher, which is in line with the mission of Grand Canyon University.”

As the assistant town manager, Mr. Gardner is responsible for broad policy planning and management oversight, assisting the town manager with all phases of government including participation in the strategic planning and budgeting, facilitating the development and implementation of policy proposals, leading leadership teams; and representing the town in variety of capacities.

He also serves as the director of human resources and workforce technology for the town.

Mr. Gardner started with the town in 2007 as the HR manager. With over 20 years of experience in the public sector, he holds a bachelor of science degree in business management and a master’s degree in public administration, both from Arizona State University.

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