June 13, 2014
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Natasha Slaughter of Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) Jacksonville, left, and Joanne Cruz of Bi-Lo Holdings, and SHRM, right, receive the Jacksonville Business Journal Diversity Award last month.​

Bi-Lo Holdings Associate Relations Specialist Joanne Cruz and her fellow committee directors at the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM Jax) were honored with the Jacksonville (Fla.) Business Journal Diversity Award last month.

The newspaper gave them the award for their work to further diversity in the community.

“It was a great surprise,” Cruz said of the award. “I was greatly honored to receive such an award. It was unexpected -- I’m just doing what I love, and that just happened to occur. Opportunity for every minority is a passion of mine, and I dedicate my time because of that.”

Cruz has served on Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown’s subcommittee on disability, a Department of Labor disability roundtable in Jacksonville and in SHRM Jax training seminars for HR Professionals on tapping into a diverse talent pool. As vice president of the Hispanic Institute for Life and Leadership (H.I.L.L.) of Northeast Florida, she helped establish the Northeast Florida bilingual job fair.

“Joanne is one of those pioneer people doing great stuff out there,” said Ken Peterson, Bi-Lo Holdings vice president of human resources and diversity. “She’s doing great things in our community, and we’re extremely proud of her hard work and her effort.”

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