Lita Parker

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Senior Vice President, Human Resources New Line Cinema
New York City Age: 36

Lita Parker found her calling by sheer coincidence. During one spring break, rather than indulge in a little rest and relaxation, she opted to go to work with her uncle, who, at the time, was an IBM human resources executive. The impressions of that experience were lasting. Parker began her career in human resources even before she graduated from college and worked her way up to her current role as senior vice president of human resources at New Line Cinema, a division of Time Warner Inc.

Parker describes herself as being passionate about human resources. “I love what I do,” she declares. She has learned the profession’s success secrets, carefully honing her insights into the hiring process and how that process affects the well being of the company as a whole. Knowing about the culture of your business and how it relates to the person are key, she notes. “The talent and skill levels of an applicant are only part of the package,” she adds.

Parker holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce and an executive master’s degree in business administration from the University of Connecticut. At New Line Cinema, reputedly the world’s most successful independent film company, Parker is responsible for all human resources strategy, operations and activities. Prior to that she was vice president of human resources and people development at Time Inc. and also headed the company’s People Development Group, with responsibility for talent management, training and development.

There is no shortage of support and inspiration from family and friends, she says. From her grandmother she learned to show love and to persevere under any circumstances; from her mother, how to balance professional demands with the value of family, friends and personal interests; and from her father, the value of education.

The most fascinating aspect of her job, she says, is playing a role in facilitating the business’s accomplishments and its goals.