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Our Leadership Team

With more than 75 employees, including a large team of HR experts and employment attorneys, Washington Employers is the industry leader in strategic workforce performance solutions. Our leadership team includes seasoned professionals who are deeply committed to helping member organizations achieve the business results they need to succeed and thrive.


Craig Nelson, President: Craig Nelson's strategic vision ensures the organization recruits, develops, and engages the talented employees needed to facilitate the unique needs of our members. Craig joined Washington Employers in 1987 and has more than 30 years of business management experience. He holds a B.S. degree from the University of Oregon, is a licensed Certified Public Accountant, and holds an insurance license in Washington state.

Tom Chudecke, Chief Financial Officer: Tom Chudecke leads Washington Employers’ accounting, finance, and IT teams. With over 30 years of broad experience in the professional services, hardware, software, manufacturing, and distribution sectors, his expertise includes strategic planning, fundraising and debt restructuring, tax planning, accounting department supervision, operations management, cost controls, budgeting and forecasting, and international business operations. Tom holds an MBA in Financial Management from City University and a BS in Accounting from Central Washington University.

Arthur Dalessandro, Vice President, TPA Services: Arthur M. Dalessandro oversees the largest Manufacturing Retrospective Rating Program in the state of Washington (an excess of 36 million dollars in annual premiums). Art also oversees the Pension Services and Unemployment Compensation teams. He joined Washington Employers in 1995 and has more than 25 years of workers' compensation experience, 20 of which has been focused on Washington State Retrospective Rating and Third Party Administration.

Shannon Kavanaugh, Vice President, Marketing and Sales: Shannon Kavanaugh leads the marketing and member relations functions within the organization. Previous to Washington Employers, she was the founder of Go-To-Market Strategies, an online sales and marketing resource center and has led the sales and/or marketing efforts in both product and service organizations. With 20 years of sales and marketing experience, both at the tactical and strategic levels, she is also a sales and marketing author and nationwide speaker. She holds a BA from the University of Washington.

Joseph Marth, Vice President, Business Solutions: Joseph Marth leads the team of HR, compensation, learning, and organization development professionals responsible for a full range of consulting services. Dr. Marth joined Washington Employers in 2008 and has more than 20 years of experience in human resources--including experience at small companies, Fortune 500 corporations, and nonprofit organizations. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Akron, with doctoral concentration in Organizational Psychology; an M.S. from the University of Akron; and a B.B.A. from Kent State University. Dr. Marth is a full member of the American Psychological Association and the Society of Industrial & Organizational Psychology and holds numerous certifications in organization development and psychology.

Julie Piazza, Human Resources and Administration: Julie Piazza is responsible for the organization's internal human resource functions and corporate administration. She has more than 20 years Human Resources experience ranging from global corporations to startups in biotechnology, high technology, & manufacturing organizations. Julie is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR), an Achieve Global Facilitator, and a member of the Seattle Society for Human Resources. She holds a B.A. degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara.



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