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CRP – Who is Certified? Meet Graduates and Instructors
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Recognition Professionals International is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and is authorized to issue the IACET CEU.

RPI is proud to have a global community of CRP graduates. Our diverse network of graduates work in a variety of sectors, from aerospace to healthcare to financial services creating, maintaining, and improving their organizations recognition programs.

Take a look at our program graduates

“Having worked in and out of the recognition industry for the past 15 years, it wasn’t until I went through the certification process to fully understand the systematic methods and strategies of recognition and incentives.  Obtaining my CRP and going through recertification has provided a fundamental foundation as well as competencies required to implement and assess programs/campaigns. If you are thinking about pursuing your certification, just GO FOR IT!”
  • Lori Rains, MA, CRP, Senior Program Manager, Spear One

“I have found the CRP certification to be valuable not only to my professional growth, but most importantly a great benefit to the clients that I support. The certification has given me the confidence to guide clients to best practice recognition solutions. This is critical for building a culture of appreciation and the long-term success of their recognition initiatives.”
  • Kelli Johnson, CRP, Launch Manager, O.C. Tanner Company

“Going through the Recognition Professionals Certification was certainly a turning point in my career. As a solutions provider, it was extremely beneficial to learn more in depth about the science behind recognition and study the countless examples of what drives success. There were many "Aha" moments throughout. The focus on seven best practices and why they are crucial to a successful recognition program forms the basis of our what RPI is all about. Amazing organization, I'd highly recommend the CRP courses they have certainly helped in my career, by influencing our internal strategy for recognition as well as how we deliver for our clients.”
  • Mark A. Prine, CRP, Vice President, National Accounts, EGR International Inc


Brian Dodds

Brian Dodds, CRP
New York, NY


Over 15 years of experience helping clients to determine best in class solutions by taking into account company history, current culture, desired culture, executive and employee input as well as the most current practices in the world of human behavior. My goal is to help create the unique solution that is the true representation of your company and drives employee motivation towards corporate objectives.

At WorkStride, we enable the world's most dynamic companies to harness a shared purpose through a proven, people-driven software platform.

Our recognition, rewards, and incentives software solution makes it easy to highlight good deeds, compensate great work, and share authentic stories that reinforce a common direction. Designed around two-way engagement, WorkStride seamlessly integrates with your brand, systems, and culture to create a fun, familiar place where employees and management are on the same page and the same path--communicating, celebrating, and competing at their best.

The WorkStride platform integrates a variety of programs and initiatives, including peer and manager recognition, channel sales incentives, direct sales incentives, wellness, safety, milestones, and training.

Brian has been involved with RPI for over a decade and has supported the organization in a variety of leadership roles. He previously served as the President for Recognition Professionals International and was the winner of the Harkins-Howell Education Award in 2012. He is a graduate of Texas Tech University with degrees in Psychology and Classical Literature.

Theresa Harkins

Theresa Harkins, CRP, CCP, SPHR
Inspirus, LLC
Fort Worth, TX


Theresa is a visionary, strategic leader as indicated by the achievement of such esteemed certifications as the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and Certified Compensation Professional (CCP). She was an early innovator in the deployment of global enterprise employee recognition strategies by using her training and facilitation skills and knowledge to assist in the implementation of these initiatives. As a chartered professional in the recognition industry, Theresa eliminated the splintered recognition approach in her organization by creating an aggregated program structure to provide a sense of unity and consistency in the company. With this desire, Theresa led the development of the award-winning best practice recognition programs at Delta Air Lines.

Theresa currently leads the Solutions division at Inspirus, where she consults with clients as a respected expert in the industry to design recognition programs that align with the organization's cultural goals and needs.

As a long-term member of RPI, she has served in many leadership roles over the years including President of RPI in 2007. She continues to sit on the RPI board and is a member of the Learning Action Team.

Barbara Ruddy

Barbara Ruddy, CRP
Arizona Department of Economic Security
Phoenix, AZ


Barbara brings to RPI more than 20 years of experience in the field of employee recognition. As a long time employee with the State of Arizona, Department of Economic Security, an organization of almost 10,000 employees, Barbara was responsible for the design, implementation and on-going management of an employee recognition system that has served as a model for many other organizations. In these roles, Barbara helped others realize that recognition isn't just a nice thing to do; it’s a smart business strategy for success.

As an active supporter of RPI since 1998, Barbara chairs the “Pamela Sabin Recognition Champion Award Program” committee. In addition to being a CRP and RF facilitator, Barbara is a member of the RPI Community Action Team striving to strengthen the engagement of current members and build membership to share best practices in the field of employee recognition for all organizations, large and small. 

One of Barbara’s favorite quotes is from Maya Angelou: I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Sometimes all it takes is a genuine smile!

R. Scott Russell

R. Scott Russell, CRP
C.A. Short Company
Shelby, NC


Scott is a 20-year veteran of event management and recognition from his days as a concert promoter in Southern California to his most recent 12-year stint in Operations (Employee Experience) with Verizon Wireless. Scott is currently the Director of Client Success for the C.A. Short Company based in North Carolina. He works day in and day out to promote the value of recognition and engagement to his staff, his clients, and others.

Scott writes an ongoing web series on Random Acts of Engagement and is an accomplished public speaker. As a music lover and musician himself, Scott has worked over the years with many artists and you may even catch him singing a song or two at our annual RPI conference. He was instrumental in managing the recent overhaul of the CRP curriculum and is excited to see it brought to the masses with the launch of the online curriculum in 2017. Scott is an Executive RPI Board member and chairs the RPI Community Action Team.

Scott loves this motto and swears he lives by it: If at first you don’t succeed, redefine success.


Roy Saunderson

Roy Saunderson, CRP
Rideau Recognition Solutions
Saint-Laurent, Quebec


Roy Saunderson is the Chief Learning Officer and a recognition strategist at Rideau Recognition Solutions. He’s the author of the recently released book Practicing Recognition: How to give meaningful recognition to people every day as well as his previous book Giving the Real Recognition Way. Roy is a regular contributor to Training Magazine and Incentive Magazine, and was chosen as one of the 25 most influential people in the incentive industry for 2017. Roy consults and educates leaders and staff in companies, governments, and associations around the world, on recognition practices, strategy, and programs in the workplace.

A favorite quote is: Real Recognition™ is about appreciating people for who they are and recognizing them for what they do. - Roy Saunderson


All of our certified instructors have a great depth of Recognition-related knowledge and experience either as practitioners or business providers. All course materials are gathered as a compilation from the Industry and RPI's Best Practices, and while instructing, all of our facilitators abide by RPI's "no-sales-pitch" policy.