Office of the Vice President
Melissa Curry, Vice President for Human Resources
As the Vice President for Human Resources at the University of Florida, Melissa Curry brings a wealth of experience and a proven track record of transformative leadership to her role. With over 24 years of dedicated service to UF, Melissa has served as Vice President for Human Resources since July 2022.
Melissa’s commitment to improving the employee journey has been a cornerstone of her career. She understands the importance of addressing all aspects of an employee’s professional life, from their initial recruitment and onboarding to ongoing development, engagement, and even retirement. Her efforts have led to the transformation of UF’s application and onboarding processes, the implementation of competitive compensation and benefits systems, and the introduction of comprehensive exit surveys. These initiatives aim to create a culture of care and responsibility within the organization while supporting employees’ physical and mental well-being.
In her previous role as the Assistant Vice President for Human Resources, Melissa oversaw various critical areas, including Talent Acquisition and Onboarding, Employment Operations and Records, Immigration Services, Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance, Classification and Compensation, Workforce Analytics, and the Office of Strategic Initiatives. Melissa began with UF in 1999 as a recruiter, which provided her with a foundation in talent acquisition strategy.
As Vice President, Melissa leads a dedicated team of over 100 staff members who serve UF’s 32,000 full- and part-time employees across 67 counties. She is a member of the President’s Cabinet, providing leadership across campus, fostering strategic collaborations, and building partnerships across academic and administrative units to support the university’s mission and strategic plan.
Melissa’s commitment to professional excellence is evident in her certifications as a Society for Human Resource Management Senior Certified Professional (SPHR-SCP) and a Certified Professional Recruiter (PRC). These certifications reflect her dedication to maintaining the highest standards in her field.
Melissa holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa and a master’s degree in educational leadership from UF. She is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in educational leadership at UF.
Brook Mercier, Assistant Vice President for Human Resources
As assistant vice president for Human Resources, Brook Mercier oversees the areas of University Benefits and Employee Relations. Prior to this role, he served as director and associate director of Employee Relations. Mercier has also served as associate director for Classification and Compensation as well as Employee Relations manager for the Health Science Center and Facilities Services. Mercier joined the University of Florida in 2006 after seven years working in human resources in private industry. He enjoys the fulfillment of seeing managers and employees achieve success for their departments and the University of Florida.
Bob Parks, Assistant Vice President for Human Resources
As assistant vice president for organizational culture and performance and senior director of Training and Organizational Development (T&OD), Bob Parks works with his team and colleagues across HR and campus to continuously improve and strengthen UF’s culture and elevate performance. In his role as Sr. Director, Dr. Parks has focused on building UF’s leadership, organizational, and professional development programs and create a significant competitive advantage for UF. He has worked at UF as a trainer, leadership development specialist, and OD consultant for 20 years. Before joining UF, he taught or trained in both university and corporate environments for more than five years.
Dr. Parks earned his bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University, his master’s degree at Yale University, and his doctorate at Boston University. He is a certified executive coach and executive coach master trainer and certified to facilitate several leadership and professional development programs.
Angie Brown, Director of Communications and Worklife
Angie Brown oversees communications for faculty and staff, including the biweekly UF at Work e-newsletter, as well as employee work-life initiatives. She facilitates internal change management efforts and provides strategic communication planning and execution for UFHR, CFO and other university units. Brown has worked in higher education communications for more than 25 years, including positions at UF, Penn State and Oregon Health & Science University. She has served on the National Consortium for Building Healthy Academic Communities’ Board of Directors and the Mindful Leader Advisory Board as well as co-chair of the UF Healthy Gators Coalition.
Robert L. Cancellieri, Director of Employee Relations & Engagement
As director of Employee Relations and Engagement, Robert Cancellieri oversees UF’s comprehensive employee and labor relations program and strategy for faculty and staff. Cancellieri and his team work to promote a fair and respectful work environment, allowing employees the opportunity to achieve their professional and career goals. Cancellieri brings many years of experience as an attorney whose work focused primarily on labor and employment matters in both the public sector as Deputy Director of Labor Relations for Nassau County (NY) and in the private sector as an associate with Jackson Lewis P.C. Most recently he served for 6 years as the director of Employee Relations at Albert Einstein College of Medicine located in New York City.
Shannon Edwards, Director of Benefits, Retirement and Leave
Shannon Edwards oversees all aspects of benefits, retirement & leave for the University of Florida employees. In addition to the administration of benefit programs, Edwards is passionate about educating employees to understand their benefit offerings and partnering with them through all of their benefit related needs throughout their career.
Edwards graduated from Georgia Southern University with a degree in Business Administration. She has been in a benefits focused role for the past thirty years and has worked in various industries to include healthcare, technology, K-12 and higher education.
Audrey Gainey, Director of Talent Acquisition and Onboarding
As director of Talent Acquisition and Onboarding, Audrey Gainey oversees UF’s Strategic Talent Group, which aims to identify, attract and engage potential and current faculty and staff and serves as a consulting group to departments throughout the university.
Gainey brings more than 24 years of experience in recruitment, selection and hiring to the UFHR team, having most recently served as talent acquisition manager for the City of Gainesville. There, she led a team of eight in the development of recruitment and sourcing strategies, analyzed hiring needs and provided employee hiring forecasts and championing various diversity initiatives.
Gainey has also led a number of system implementations, including the City of Gainesville’s automated onboarding process and background integration. She served as the HR Change Champion for the City’s ERP Implementation efforts, a member of the City’s Equal Opportunity Diversity Committee and a member of the City’s Core Equity Leadership Team. During her tenure with the City, she was selected as an Emerging Leader, recognized for her commitment to diversity and awarded for her exceptional team efforts to staff a major City project.
Gainey holds a master’s degree in organizational management from the University of Phoenix and a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Alabama A&M University. She is also a Society for Human Resource Management Senior Certified Professional (SPHR-SCP).
Brent Goodman, Director of Compensation and Employment Operations
Brent Goodman oversees the university’s classification and compensation systems in order to ensure the university’s compliance with applicable laws and regulations. He previously served as an Employee Relations manager, and prior to joining the University of Florida, he worked as a human resources manager in the private sector, including for Home Depot and Bass Pro Shops. In his role as associate director, Goodman works with university stakeholders to develop and implement programs that ensure market competitiveness and internal equity in order to attract, reward and retain high-performing faculty and staff.
Sommer Green, Director of Administrative Services
As the Director of Administrative Services, Sommer Green plays a pivotal leadership role in overseeing and managing the business operations of UFHR. Green is responsible for directing and coordinating a wide range of functions, including accounting, budgeting, compliance, human resources, procurement, and administrative operations. She supports strategic planning efforts, assesses the efficiency of fiscal and administrative policies, and spearheads initiatives to enhance business processes. In addition, Green coordinates the completion and submission of several university reports on behalf of Human Resources, including the SACS accreditation report, effort reporting activity and space allocation. Additionally, Green collaborates with the Vice President and is involved in special projects as needed.
Green is a graduate of the University of Florida, where she received a bachelor’s degree in Computer and Information Sciences. She joined UF in 2004 and came to UFHR in 2020 via the Biomedical Engineering Department, Office of the Vice President for University Relations and Operations Analysis.
Amber Wuertz, Director of Strategic Initiatives
As the Director of Strategic Initiatives, Amber Wuertz initiates, directs and implements a broad range of topics of organizational significance for all operations and activities of human resources, including special projects and key strategic initiatives. In her role, Wuertz Works directly with leadership and stakeholders to formulate and execute strategies aligned with university needs.
Wuertz received her bachelor’s degree from Western State College of Colorado, and her master’s degree in management from the University of Florida. Wuertz has worked in UFHR since 2006 and has previously served in roles in Talent Acquisition & Onboarding, Employee Relations, and Classification and Compensation.