Herman-Hugo-600x600_hrHerman Hugo

Director of Compliance

Staff nickname: Oupa Enneagram: 2w1

Strengths: Communication | Visionary | Strategic | Harmony

Causes Herman supports: Cru, Mission Enablers, International Messengers, World Vision, local church, food programs, shelters (local and in Africa)

Personal Motto: “Every person has a story – be intentional to listen first”

Herman’s unique ability is his ability to see both the big picture (the high-level view) and the details. He always keeps the big picture perspective in mind, while being able to sort through the different components involved to create a cohesive strategy. He is a gifted listener and picks up on the deeper understanding of what people are trying to communicate beyond just the words. He has an uncanny ability to detect miscommunication, and is very skilled at conflict management. As a manager he enjoys listening to all the voices on a topic before making decisions and driving the solutions forward. He cares for people more than things and really tries to build relationships on a deeper level, to get to know what is important to each individual, and what makes them tick.

Herman grew up in Cape Town, South Africa, and as a child he enjoyed time in nature climbing mountains with his family. He completed his engineering studies (MSEE) in South Africa, and then moved to California in 2000 at age 36. He spent 20 years in the Silicon Valley Semiconductor industry in various Marketing and Product Management roles,and then retired in Georgia in 2020 due to family health reasons. He wanted to focus more of his time on being with his wife and their loved ones – including their 3 daughters and 10 grandkids. Two of his daughters live in Georgia and one lives in France. He has a multinational family, and at one time he had direct family members on 4 continents (Brazil, USA, France, and South Africa). At family gatherings you can hear 4 languages being spoken: Czech, Afrikaans, French, and English!

Herman feels the most present when – “Sitting around a campfire with my wife and good friends in our backyard in the forest sipping a glass of red wine.”

He would love to have coffee with: “My dad. He died when I was 10, and I would love to get to know him better. I never knew him while I was an adult. I would love to ask him, ‘How did you organize your life in such a way to do so much in so little time?’ He accomplished 5 times what I have, even though he only lived till the age of 45. He was involved in political and church organizations working to bring an end to apartheid, and co-authored a few books.”

What helps Herman feel grounded when life gets crazy: “My relationship with God and going back to the Bible and spending quiet moments with the Lord.”

One lesson he keeps relearning is: “How to love and support my wife”

When he looks at himself and the life he lives he is most thankful: “That I was able to retire at the time when my wife became ill, and can be there for her and support her, as well as to have more time with my wife, children, and grandchildren.

The best piece of advice he has ever received: “Do not take yourself too seriously – it’s not about you.”

One thing Herman loves to do: “I love creating with my hands. I love doing pottery, working with clay on the wheel.”

Favorite books:

The Bible
Long walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
Godel, Escher, and Bach by Douglas Hofstadter
Heaven is For Real – by Todd Burpo

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