About Me

Ken Hurley is a labour relations and HR specialist with many years of experience. Hurley has become a recognized leader in working with unions and has created better communication between these groups, major corporations, and employers. His intensive biography showcases the progress society can make when people work together to improve labour relations and operating conditions for everyone.

Hurley's Early Life

After finishing his high school degree at Ladue High School, Hurley became interested in political science, negotiations, and other competitions. While a popular and well-respected student was attending this school, he found his purpose in college. While attending Saint Louis University, he earned a B.A. In political science and graduated Summa Cum Laude with an impressive 3.9-grade point average.

He then attended Washington University in St. Louis, earning his Juris Doctorate in law. While attending this university, Hurley earned second place in negotiations competitions and was part of the Moot Court Team. These groups helped prepare him for a career finding common ground between groups that could seem to find no connection when working alone without his help.

During his years here, he learned many of the most important lessons that helped push his career to the next level. These included patience, empathy, and negotiating with groups with disparate concepts, ideas, and needs. His goal is to always do right by his clients by finding their shared humanity and helping them understand what they can do to help each other succeed.

Early Successes in His Field

After college, Hurley got his first job as an associate attorney for Simpson, Aherne & Garrity. This law firm specializes in side labour and employment law throughout the construction industry. During his five years here, he helped research, write, litigate, train, and negotiate with unions through various hearings and trials. He also researched and wrote legal briefs and handled many other steps.

For example, he wrote employee policies and handbooks and created HR documents and newsletters. Furthermore, Hurley got real-world legal experience during various trials and strikes and created orders that helped companies work smoothly and efficiently despite strikes. His success with these cases helped him push his career forward in several ways.

After finishing here, he worked for seven years as the corporate director of labour and employee relations at Kindred Healthcare. He started as a regional labour relations counsel for the western United States and later moved to take over the whole department. He handled collective bargaining agreements covering over 2,000 healthcare workers nationwide during his time here. This experience was formative and helped him get the training needed for his most significant successes.

How Hurley Improved On His Impressive Successes

The name Ken Hurley started getting recognized by many major corporations. Then, a significant bidding war led to him getting a job as vice president of labour relations at Penske Truck Leasing, one of the largest companies of its type in the nation. Here, Hurley focused on transforming HR and labour relations by eliminating reactive strategies focused on business-oriented and employee-centred practices.

For example, he helped create better relationships with trucking unions, supervised four HR directors and multiple administrators, and created guidelines for HR and negotiations that included mutual respect and dignity. His success here lasted four years, after which he became the senior vice president of human resources for six years. Hurley further improved Penske's operations by focusing on better executive leadership, education, and a more robust understanding of labour relations.

Hurley also focused on better recruiting and staffing processes, upgraded the firm's technology, and created more efficient negotiating and labour practices that enhanced Penske's operation even further. He managed 72 associates at the corporate level and 40 throughout a complex reporting structure. He turned the organization around to become the second-highest from the second-lowest, creating an almost unheard-of improvement in his field.

Current Success and Charitable Donations

After leaving Penske, Hurley joined American Red Cross for two years. One of his biggest successes was leading the first-ever national contract with a union coalition representing ARC employees. ARC heavily awarded him during his time here, particularly his ability to train and develop labour relations leaders. This education is something all other employers noticed and celebrated, as Hurley left better and more intelligent leaders behind everywhere he worked.

Hurley has kept quiet over the years because of his charitable donations. Like many other genuinely giving people, he believes that charity shouldn't be highly advertised, or it should lose its effect. That's why he doesn't discuss the number of groups that have received his support over the years. Working with the American Red Cross was part of this drive toward helping others, though it is far from his only instance.

Since leaving American Red Cross, Ken Hurley has worked with other organizations and achieved similar levels of success. His name is synonymous with excellence in HR, and many companies turn to his example. For instance, he has helped train many corporations' HR departments to help them better handle the needs of their employees to ensure that they are as effective as possible and capable of handling many negotiating situations.

And retirement is not something Hurley is looking to do any time soon! He has recently been interested in volunteer firefighting in his community and has looked into joining a few different teams. This surprising interest is just another part of his giving nature. It also underlines what makes him an effective negotiator: understanding the working class. His desire to help others mirrors the often empathetic and community-centred working-class community that Hurley has helped through labour negotiations over the years.