July 23, 2012

Ashley Baron Russo

AGE: 29

TITLE: Labor & Employee Relations Manager

COMPANY NAME: Stanley Black & Decker, Inc.

COMPANY'S LOCATION: New Britain

RESIDENCE: West Hartford

What do you do? Professionally, I represent the company's North American businesses in union and non-union labor relations and employee relations matters. Personally, I enjoy entertaining family and friends with my husband, Phil, at our new home in West Hartford.

What do you want to be doing in 10 years? This is a very exciting time to be with Stanley Black & Decker. In the last two years that I have been with the company, we've expanded our business platform to add an oil and natural gas pipeline business, built our presence in the healthcare markets with state-of-the-art RTLS Wi-Fi technology and more than doubled our security business' presence in Europe. The company is continually growing and evolving and I am looking forward to growing and evolving with it because Stanley Black & Decker provides me with incredible professional challenges and development opportunities.

What is your biggest strength? Building relationships. President Theodore Roosevelt said, “The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.”

Where do you go for new ideas? I am a member of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) and serve as the vice president of the Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut (HRACC). I find that these organizations are a great resource for networking with colleagues and learning best practices.

What is the best advice you received? Be yourself. When I started working, my boss told me that the best way to approach any negotiation was to be true to myself. By going into a meeting trying to be someone you are naturally not, you run the risk of coming across inauthentic and put yourself at an initial disadvantage.

What service or charitable cause has your attention? While there are an unlimited number of worthy causes, particularly in the greater Hartford area, March of Dimes has my attention. Stanley Black & Decker holds several tool sales through the year that are open to employees and their friends and family members to benefit March of Dimes. It's an incredible opportunity to pick up a tape rule made right here in New Britain and donate to a worthy cause at the same time.

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