Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Barragate

Susie Barragate

President & CEO, Vocational Guidance Services

Susie Barragate was appointed as the President & CEO of Vocational Guidance Services (VGS), an Ohio provider of personalized vocational training to individuals with disabilities or other barriers to employment, in September 2018. She has served with VGS for more than 22 years, joining the organization in 1996 as the Human Resources Coordinator and in 1999 becoming the agency's Human Resources Director.

In 2012, Ms. Barragate was asked to take responsibility for the vocational rehabilitation services at VGS' Elyria facility in addition to her supervision of VGS' HR and Intake Departments. In 2014, she became Vice President of Human Resources and Lorain County Rehabilitation Services.

In addition to processing payroll for four distinct corporations and over 1,000 employees, under Ms. Barragate's leadership VGS' Human Resources Department was responsible for guiding and directing agency personnel policies and practices, while the Intake Department oversaw all the open and closed case files for program participants, while also processing referrals for services to participants.

The Lorain County Rehabilitation Services included a program with the Lorain County Department of Jobs and Family Services, as well as Placement Services, Clerical Training, and Work Adjustment.

Ms. Barragate graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a Bachelor of Arts degree with a concentration in personnel and industrial relations. In 2013, she was awarded the Innovation Award for Strategic Alignment by ERC and CSHRM's HR Awards, and was named as an Archer Award finalist for HR Executive of the Year by Crain's Cleveland Business in 2014. Ms. Barragate is a graduate of the Cleveland Leadership Center's Bridge Builders Class of 2013.

Please visit http://www.vgsjob.org for more information.

Ms. Barragate can be contacted at +1 216-431-7800 or SusieBarragate@vgsjob.org

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.