Paul Cortissoz, SPHR

Paul is a senior HR leader with almost 25 years of cross-industry experience as a Business Partner, Organizational Development and Learning & Development expert.

His diverse background has allowed him to work across a variety of industries including: insurance, distribution, retail, corporate learning, media advertising, higher education and consumer packaged goods. Paul also has an extensive track record of delivering HR solutions tied to measurable business results throughout his career.

" I think of my role as a business leader first, with an expertise in HR & OD, not the other way around.  I have enjoyed the challenge of working within different organizations and industries throughout my career. This diversity of experience has rounded out my commercial knowledge and challenged me to be a better business leader.  

I have a solid understanding of designing human capital best practices, and the pragmatic experience of implementing them on the front line.  I love the challenge and opportunity of applying this approach in helping organizations meet their business objectives though engaging people practices.  One of my passions is to show business impact of HR solutions."

Paul's previous work experience includes senior level HR roles in world recognized organizations:

  • Heineken USA – Director, Organizational Development and Talent Acquisition
  • Heineken USA – Director, People (Senior Business Partner)
  • Columbia University – Executive Director, Learning & Organizational Development / Recruitment
  • Yellow Pages Group – Director, Human Resources (Senior Business Partner)
  • Global Knowledge – Director, Leadership Training Programs
  • Gap Inc Canada – Senior Manager, Organizational Development & Training
  • Gap Inc Canada –Senior Manager, Human Resources (Senior Business Partner)
  • Gap Inc Canada – Manager, Human Resources (Old Navy Distribution Center Start-Up)
  • Liberty Mutual – Manager, Human Resources (Business Partner)

Senior VP HR

Paul is an extremely skilled HR professional who added tremendous value to our organization. Paul quickly learned our business, and was able to identify and drive HR solutions that had a positive impact. He was well respected by our senior team and worked closely with us in our talent and succession planning efforts.

Jose Luis Velasquez


Paul has great experience as both an HR generalist and as a talent/OD specialist. And, because he has both, tends to be very good as a generalist (because he gets talent and development) and as an OD specialist (because he understands HR). Paul is smart, fun, thoughtful, practical and strives to drive business results and performance.

Alison DeMille


Paul is one of the very best HR professionals I have ever worked with. He has broad range--HR technical skills from high level organization development to change management to leadership and management development skills. He also has great influence with an incredible sense for innovation and resourcefulness. He is A++.

Lucinda Donnelly

Senior Director Compensation

What impressed me the most about Paul is his amazing business acumen and focus. He delivers innovative OD and learning programs with careful attention to overall alignment with the needs of the business, never losing sight of the ROI. Paul would be a tremendous asset to any organization that cares about best-in-class HR services.

Timothy Price

SVP National Sales and Service

Paul can always be counted on to offer insightful, practical and results oriented HR advice. He is personable, articulate, highly ethical and has high business acumen, all making him an extremely competent and effective HR executive. I would welcome the opportunity to work with Paul again.

Scott Wambolt

VP, Operations

Paul is a creative thinker and is never satisfied with common practice or status quo. He researches the best options and pushes his knowledge base to provide the best service to his customer. He continually exceeds his contribution to any organization he serves by building effective relationships with key leaders in the business.

Brenda Rigney

Director HR

Paul is an expert in all facets of HR from his experience in start-up to his work in turning around businesses that are struggling. He shines in strategic planning, executive coaching, succession planning and change management. Combined with his extensive business acumen from a number of industries, he is an exceptionally rare talent.

Mark Beagan

HR Executive

Paul has accomplished many exciting projects through his collaborative nature, excellent project management skills and superior OD experience. His combination of HR skills coupled with exceptional business acumen would make him a valuable to any organization. I would not hesitate to work with Paul again.

Louis Bellardine

His proven track record of delivering measurable results tied to business strategy include:

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    Lead talent management initiatives with senior leadership team at Heineken USA to identify top talent, align on critical positions to business success, and develop succession bench for critical roles. Resulted in 90% of identified critical positions staffed with top talent- and 75% of critical positions with an identified successor ready with 2 years.
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    Developed strategy to implement acclaimed"Go Places"employer branding campaign at Heineken USA.
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    Developed and implemented business case to in-source all temporary staffing fulfillment across Columbia University. Resulted in the achievement of $16MM gross revenue and $1MM of net revenue for the HR department. Captured over 95% of all temporary staffing spend across the University, improved quality of service and attained overall cost reductions for University.
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    Developed and implemented a comprehensive community outreach strategy at Columbia University in support of a critical commitment to the City of New York as part of University expansion. Strategy was aimed at ensuring local Harlem residents had access to job opportunities and training programs at the University. Resulted in a record number of visitors to the Community Employment Center, a 325% increase in the number of interviews conducted and a 58% increase in the number of local residents hired.
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    Identified need for leadership training at Gap Inc. Canada and developed business case to deliver leadership program tied to ROI metrics of sales revenue, management turnover and loss prevention.  Aligned leadership, implemented program, integrated into HR and business practices and measured results.  Realized a return of $8,000.00 per participant. Work became a published case study and won Employee of the Year Award.
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    Initiated a temporary staffing pilot project at Gap Inc. Canada stores to increase sales. Resulted in achieving a 16% sales conversion improvement in test stores and $66,000.00 of incremental gross margin per test store location.
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    HR lead for the start-up of $90 million 738,000 sq. ft. 300 employee facility at Gap Inc. Canada in support of the launch of the Old Navy brand including talent acquisition; training; employee experience and payroll.  Project was delivered on-time and under budget.
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    HR lead for Yellow Pages acquisition of SuperPages business in Canada including: executing a large-scale 40% workforce reduction, new sales compensation and car allowance plan, group benefits/pension plan changes and leading the recruitment efforts for the new organizational structure (130 positions in a 7-month period).
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    At CDI Corporate Education (now Global Knowledge) was responsible for generating over $500,000.00 of gross revenue in new U.S. market launch in a 7-month period.

Paul has a B.A from York University and a post-graduate diploma in Human Resource management from Seneca College in Canada.  Paul also is a certified executive coach in the Intelligent Leadership coaching method.  He is certified in numerous assessment tools including the Korn Ferry Learning Agility & Lominger Tools, the Mercer Talent SIM tool, CPI 260, DISC Success Insights, Predictive Index along with other assessment tools.  

Paul obtained his Senior Professional Human Resources Designation (SPHR) from the Society of Human Resources Management. He is also a certified facilitator with DDI & Global Knowledge.