Sima Hassassian

Sima Hassassian | Deputy Executive Director

Sima started with IPMA-HR in 1994 as a publication assistant, and has since ascended the ranks to become deputy executive director of the Association. She has over 20 years of managerial experience and is responsible for the Association’s operational, fiscal, personnel and facility-related matters. With experience in resource allocation, fund management and accounting, Sima provides financial reports and information that guide the organization’s success.

Sima holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from George Mason University, with a minor in Political Science. In addition to her professional activities, Sima enjoys travelling, working on new culinary techniques, watching movies and spending quality time with family and friends.

Robert Svihla

Robert Svihla | Director of Association Services

Robert started out as the primary point of contact for sales and customer services calls for IPMA-HR in 2005, and found his tasks quickly grew to include marketing and technology. His role has since evolved into that of association services manager, where he is responsible for membership, assessment and database management.

Robert holds a Bachelor of Art in English and Film & Media Studies from George Mason University. He has a passion for international travel, having backpacked for long stretches of time through Europe and Southeast Asia after graduation before returning to Virginia in 2005. In his spare time, Robert enjoys building computers, reading detective novels and trying to predict who will win at the Academy Awards.

Yari Randall

Yari Randall | Test Development Manager

Yari joined IPMA-HR in 2017 as a Research Associate and now manages test development at the organization after her tasks quickly grew to include leadership, process improvement, and strategic planning. In addition to providing oversight, Yari is directly involved in the development and validation of IPMA-HR's high-stakes assessment tools via national job analyses, focus groups, SME interviews, and surveys.

Yari holds a M.S. in Applied Industrial and Organizational Psychology from the University of Baltimore, as well as a B.S. in Psychology, with a minor in Spanish, from the University of Maryland – College Park. She has also completed a Global Organizational Structure Development certification program in Barcelona, Spain. In her free time, you can find Yari either dancing with her basset hound, exercising, or baking the most delicious desserts. 

Bob Sewell

Bob Sewell | Assessment Services Fulfillment Manager

Prior to joining IPMA-HR in 2007, Bob was an electronics technician and supervisor in the U.S. Air Force, a residential real estate appraiser and a house painter, among other occupations. Originally from Atlanta, Georgia, Bob lived in England, Germany, Japan, and half a dozen U.S. states before moving to Springfield, Va. in 1997.

Bob is responsible for fulfilling all customized and semi-stock test orders and is the first point of contact for test orders. 

Markia Rauch

Markia Rauch | Mailroom Associate

Prior to joining IPMA-HR in 2018, Markia was a store manager at several high end boutiques throughout the Washington Metro area. Markia has also served as a showroom coordinator at Herman Miller, Inc.

Markia is responsible for the shipment of assessment and membership materials to the association’s thousands of members and customers and for the maintenance of IPMA-HR’s large inventory of public-safety tests. She enjoys a variety of activities aside from her professional career including listening to music, fashion design, and room setting. She also enjoys spending time with family, watching films, traveling with friends, and reading books.

Toni Kovalski

Toni Kovalski | Consultant

Toni served as coordinator of test design and development for IPMA-HR from 1991 to 1997, and has worked with the Association on a consulting basis since 1998. She has developed several entry-level and promotional public safety exams for IPMA-HR, in addition to the development of the Police Officer Structured Interview System (POSIS) and the Public Safety Assessment Center System (PSACS) and has authored several assessment publications. Toni is responsible for reviewing all publications produced by IPMA-HR staff prior to their release and assists with customer questions and technical guidance as needed.

Toni holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Science in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh.

Bruce Davey Consultant

Bruce Davey | Consultant

Bruce has developed and validated more than a dozen public safety tests, focusing on police and fire testing, since joining the IPMA-HR team in 1990, and currently serves as a technical advisor. He is also responsible for the successful development of IPMA-HR’s Police Officer Structured Interview System (POSIS), a system that assesses entry-level candidates’ levels of maturity and motivation, and their decision-making, communication and interpersonal skills in a face-to-face setting.

He has a master’s in Psychology from The New School and more than 30 years of experience in the testing field. He is a past president of the International Personnel Assessment Council (IPAC), and has won several national awards for his contributions to the personnel assessment field.
Bruce is a frequent speaker and workshop presenter at national conferences, and he has been an expert witness in more than 15 court cases involving testing issues. None of his tests has ever been the subject of an adverse court decision.
Julia Jaoude

Julia Jaoude | Consultant

Julia studies the tasks and job-related knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics (KSAOs) that define high job performance, in order to develop assessments that best evaluate an applicant’s likelihood to succeed in a given public safety position. Additionally, she works closely with the Assessment team in conducting validation studies and creating complimentary products to IPMA-HR’s tests, such as study guides and assessment publications.

Julia holds a bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a master’s in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from San Francisco State University.


Emily Cross | Consultant

Emily has over 30 years of experience in the testing field with an emphasis in management assessment and training for public safety. She has successfully developed and administered numerous management assessment centers and tests for local and federal agencies ranging in size from 35 to several thousand sworn/uniformed personnel and has never had a test legally challenged.

Joining the Assessment Services team in 2005 as a consultant, Emily developed the popular Public Safety Assessment Center System (PSACS), the assessment system that accurately predicts a candidate’s on-the-job performance at the rank of sergeant, lieutenant and captain.

Emily has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Miami, a master’s degree in Psychology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and has completed doctoral courses in Human Resource Development and Organizational Development at The George Washington University. She has been invited to speak at a number of national conferences and several universities and provides technical advice to government organizations throughout the country.

Shawn Kelley

Shawn Kelley | Employment Testing Specialist

Shawn has assisted IPMA-HR in the past as a public safety consultant. He has participated in and managed public safety assessment centers. He has extensive experience working with public safety organizations at the local, state and federal agency levels, as well as non-government public safety organizations.

Shawn has over 40 years of experience in public safety where he has held the positions of firefighter, paramedic, law enforcement officer, fire and building official, and bomb technician. He has progressively obtained the rank of Assistant Fire Chief/Chief Fire Marshal in an urban fire department.

Shawn has an associate’s degree in Emergency Medical Management and is a graduate of the Executive Fire Officers program at the National Fire Academy.

Shawn is a 28-year veteran of the Arlington County, VA Fire Department. He retired in 2006 as an Assistant Fire Chief, Chief Fire Marshal and a certified law enforcement officer. His last 20 months he was also the Chief Building Official. Shawn was a nationally registered EMT paramedic for 18 years and founder of the Department’s Technical Rescue Team. He was the County’s first certified fire protection specialist and certified fire and explosives investigator. His last six years he was also a certified bomb technician and commander of the Department’s bomb squad, which was responsible for such buildings as Reagan National Airport, The Pentagon, CIA and National Foreign Affairs Training Center.

As the chairman of the Emergency Services Sector Coordinating Council for Infrastructure Protection for DHS, Shawn represented 3.2 million first responders nationwide.

Shawn was one of the two key incident commanders on the scene at the Pentagon on 9-11 and throughout the event. He later testified before the 9-11 Commission in New York City regarding Arlington County’s response efforts; and he has presented at hundreds of meetings and conferences regarding this event.

Shawn works for New Mexico Tech as an instructor and pre and post blast explosives subject matter expert. He also works for the DHS Office for Bombing Prevention on the Multi-Jurisdictional IED response program.

John Haas

John Haas | Employment Testing Specialist

John has 20 years of experience conducting public safety management assessment centers for local, state and federal agencies, and has been providing IPMA-HR customers with consulting services to help them understand IPMA-HR’s Public Safety Assessment Center System (PSACS) since 2007. He provides assistance with candidate and assessor training, running the assessment center, scoring and candidate and management feedback.

John has a bachelor's in Sociology and a master's in Criminal Justice. He has more than 30 years of progressively responsible law enforcement experience in an urban police department, attaining the rank of deputy chief of police.