Meeting/Event Information


November 01, 2019

CAHRA Work Matters Leadership Forum
November 01, 2019 - November 01, 2019
7:30 AM - 9:00 AM
Clinton Presidential Center
1200 President Clinton Ave.
Little Rock, AR 72201
November Breakfast Meeting

$0.00 No charge to attend - includes breakfast and presentation

$0.00 No charge to attend - includes breakfast and presentation

CAHRA is partnering with the Little Rock Regional Chamber and Ark Business Best Places to Work to present the inaugural "CAHRA Work Matters Leadership Forum." This breakfast meeting at the Clinton Presidential Center from 7:30am - 9:00am, is being held instead of the CAHRA November luncheon. It is free of charge to all CAHRA members and non-member HR Professionals, and all interested CEO's and C-Suite Executives in the surrounding Little Rock area. There is no charge to attend, however, we ask that you please register by clicking the Register Now button and entering your information. 

Online Registration is no longer available. You can register on-site tomorrow morning before the event begins at 7:30am. 

We hope that you will join us for this inaugural event to hear the following panelists discuss the role of HR while identifying the expectations of HR Leadership and the talent needs within the community.

     Curtis Barnett, AR Blue Cross Blue Shield
     Ed Choate, Delta Dental
     Marcy Doderer, Arkansas Children's Hospital
     Dr. Karama Neal, Southern Bancorp Community Partners

Curtis Barnett, President and CEO, AR Blue Cross Blue Shield
Curtis Barnett serves as president and chief executive officer for Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. As CEO, Barnett also serves on the national Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association Board of Directors, and serves as chairman of the Association's Board of Managers for the Federal Employee Program, as a member of the Health Leadership Advisory Committee and as chairman of the Board of Managers for Blue Health Intelligence, a healthcare data analytics and solutions company. Prior to his election as president and CEO in 2017, Barnett served as senior vice president of Internal Operations where he was responsible for all aspects of operations, including claims administration, customer service and customer accounts for Arkansas Blue Cross and its subsidiary and affiliate companies. He began his career at Arkansas Blue Cross in 1993 as a Primary Care Network plan manager and has served in a variety of capacities during his tenure with the company, including manager of Product Development, director of Enterprise Managed Pharmacy Program, and as vice president of Operations for BlueAdvantage Administrators of Arkansas. He served as president and CEO of USAble Corporation from 2008 through 2016. Barnett serves on several industry-related boards of directors, including: BCS Financial, Life and Specialty Ventures, LLC, the National Institute of Healthcare Management (NIHCM), the Partnership for a Healthy Arkansas, USAble Corporation, and the Western Conference of Prepaid Medical Plans. He serves on the dean’s executive advisory boards for the Walton College of Business, University of Arkansas and the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences, University of Central Arkansas. Current community involvement includes serving on the boards of directors of the Baptist Health Foundation and Healthy Active Arkansas, the executive committees for the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce and as a member of Fifty for the Future. Barnett actively supports a number of charitable organizations, including the Arkansas chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, which named him their Breath of Life honoree in 2015, the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and his alma mater, the University of Central Arkansas, which presented him with their Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2018. A native of Sherwood, Arkansas, Barnett received a bachelor's degree from the University of Central Arkansas, a master's degree in public administration from the University of Arkansas and is a graduate of the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management's Advanced Executive Program. He also has earned several professional designations, including the certified employee benefits specialist and the professional in the Academy of Healthcare Management.

Ed Choate, President and CEO, Delta Dental
Ed Choate joined Delta Dental of Arkansas as President and CEO in 2000 after serving in leadership positions for twenty years in managed healthcare organizations including NovaSys Health, HealthScope Benefits and Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. In 2006 Choate was named the Arkansas Business Executive of the Year. In 2007 he was named a Distinguished Alumni at Southern Arkansas University. Under his leadership, Delta Dental of Arkansas has been recognized as 2013 Arkansas Business of the Year and seven times as a “Best Places to Work in Arkansas”. He currently serves as on the Baptist Health Board of Trustees and on the boards of Delta Dental Plans Association, Conway Development Corporation, Healthy Active Arkansas, and Renaissance Holding Company. He is a former director of Fifty for the Future, Baptist Health Foundation, the Rotary Club of Little Rock, and Arkansas Baptist College. Choate obtained a BBA from Southern Arkansas University (SAU) in 1975 and a BSE from SAU in 1977. While at SAU, he was named to the 1974 NAIA All American football team. Since then, he has attended executive education programs at Purdue, Stanford and Harvard Universities and earned the following professional designations: Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), Registered Health Underwriter (RHU), and Certified Health Consultant (CHC). In 2014, Choate was named a Board Leadership Fellow by the National Association of Corporate Directors. He received a certificate from the Stanford Law School’s Directors College in 2018. Choate and his wife, Marilyn, have been married 42 years and have two married children and three grandchildren. 

Marcella L. Doderer (Marcy), FACHE, President and CEO, Arkansas Children's Hospital
Marcy Doderer took the helm as President and Chief Executive Officer of Arkansas Children's Hospital (ACH) on July 15, 2013. Over the last five years she has led the transformation of ACH into a health system, which includes multiple clinics, research institute and two pediatric hospitals serving over 700,000 children in Arkansas. Prior to her role at Arkansas Children’s, she served as a member of senior leadership for CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System in various capacities since 2002.  Marcy held progressive leadership roles in Texas, serving in both large and small hospital facilities.  Marcy is a Fellow in the American College of Health Care Executives (ACHE) and is active in many professional organizations. She has served on various boards and committees at the state and national level aimed at improving child health. She is currently a board member of the Children’s Hospital Solutions for Patient Safety, the Children’s Hospital Association, and Healthy Active Arkansas. Marcy is also active with the Little Rock Regional Chamber and Fifty for the Future. As a professional and a mother, Marcy is passionate about improving healthcare for children in Arkansas. She obtained her BS in Finance from Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas, and her MA in Hospital and Health Administration from The University of Iowa.

Dr. Karama Neal, President, Southern Bancorp Community Partners
Dr. Karama Neal serves as President for Southern Bancorp Community Partners (SBCP), a nonprofit loan fund and financial development organization promoting economic mobility in rural Arkansas and Mississippi through development lending, public policy advocacy, and asset building programs. Prior to joining SBCP in 2009, Dr. Neal served as an adjunct professor and program director at Emory University, where she had previously earned a PhD in genetics. In addition to holding a MA in bioethics and health policy from Loyola University Chicago and a BA in biology from Swarthmore College, Dr. Neal has completed the Impact Investing Programme at the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School. She serves on the board of the Little Rock Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis and the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation, and is a member of the Arkansas Access to Justice Commission.




The use of this seal confirms that this activity has met HR Certification Institute’s® (HRCI®) criteria for recertification credit pre-approval. 

The Central Arkansas Human Resource Association is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.

Sponsors:  Your company name and logo could appear here.  If interested, please send an email to:  [email protected]

Future Meetings

October 22, 2020

October 2020 Meeting - Diversity

October 22, 2020 - October 22, 2020
9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Zoom Webinar

Workplace Racial Inequality: Tackling the Taboo