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Let’s create a workplace where your team feels safe, supported, and welcome to be fully themselves.

At Fortress and Flourish, HR is about a lot more than being legally compliant.


I’m committed to bringing a values-based, trauma-informed, privilege-aware approach to organizational development. 


And I’ve got the tools, services, knowledge, and HR experience you need to take aligned action and create a workplace you and your employees are proud of.


I support impact-driven leaders build systems that help people – and your business – thrive.

Serving those with 10+ employees

CEOs | Entrepreneurs + Founders | CFOs | COOs


Executive Directors | Deputy Directors |DOOs | OBMs


Changing the world by doing business a better way.

Let’s Elevate Your Impact

Here’s How We Can Work Together

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Need to get clear expectations, boundaries, and goals in place for your team?

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This service is perfect for organizations who have just gone through a period of growth OR are prepping to grow. We’ll work one-on-one for 3 months to get your HR sh*t together and help you create a sustainable, inspiring workplace.

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Need to update your existing employee handbook or create one for the first time?

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Clearly defined policies and procedures are your key to a peaceful, equitable workplace. Handbook Co-Pilot takes the stress off your plate and delivers the totally personalized, professional employee handbook your team deserves.


Happy Clients Are Saying…

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I appreciate Candice’s professional and warm approach to project management. I enjoyed collaborating with her! She delivered a clear, grounded presentation to our audience of nonprofit employers with meaningful takeaways. She related the material to the pandemic context of today’s work world.


Susie Polnaszek, Director, Center for Nonprofit Excellence (CNE) of the Community Foundation for Monterey County

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Need in-depth help with designing HR systems or implementing new strategies?


A VIP Day is the perfect way to get a lot done without wasting time and resources. We can build out your HR foundations, train your supervisors to be pros at hiring and having tough conversations, plan an employee retreat, or any number of bigger HR projects that have been on your list forever.


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Need one-on-one time to ask an HR pro your questions or get help with a specific project?


Strategy Sessions are customized to your needs! Get time to chat directly with me about your HR needs, two weeks of email follow-up, and an implementation gameplan to make sure everything we talk about turns into meaningful action.

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Need help putting out a pay fire?

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Are you losing employees, having trouble hiring or confused about raises?

If you suspect that your pay rates are causing you to have high turnover, lose employees or have trouble hiring, we can put that fire out within 1 week.

This isn't just about giving you numbers and leaving you scrambling to figure out what to do with them.  The Pay Clarity Package is about making informed near and long term decisions for reciprocity that are aligned with your values and profitability


I greatly appreciate the information that I received from Candice Elliott, of Fortress and Flourish, during the webinar on nonprofit hiring, presented by the Community Foundation. The webinar covered lots of details on how to write a job description, a job announcement (I didn't know there was a difference before the webinar!), and what the hiring process should include. I also received a  one-on-one consultation with Candice, which was fantastic. She helped me write the job description and announcement, and gave me other really valuable information. I look forward to working with her again, one day.


Shirmanie Jones, Director, Arts Habitat

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Need help creating a clear, transparent pay system that all your employees can easily understand?

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Pay transparency helps your employees work better together and eliminates unequal pay issues. It’s a true game changer. How you choose to implement compensation transparency can take many different shapes and sizes. This 3-month, one-on-one program helps you figure out what pay transparency should look like in your unique business. 


Ditch the vague “competitive salary” in your job listing and watch your roster of highly-qualified candidates fill up!

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Our nonprofit organization has experienced tremendous growth over the last decade.  As the number of employees grew, our internal processes were not keeping pace.  We contracted Fortress and Flourish to prepare staff salary scales to create pay equity, pay transparency, and pay increase consistency. The final report is exactly what we wanted – a helpful tool that we’ll use for a long time. 

Teresa Malone, Deputy Director, Land Trust of Santa Cruz





Ready to elevate your team and create a supportive workplace?

I’m excited to make it happen!


As a speaker, I help people find meaning in their work by connecting it to what they truly care about.  

Here are some of the topics I love to talk about:

  • When the World Falls Apart: Building Capacity for Resilience

  • Stop Burnout In Its Tracks: Finding Nourishment Through Work

  • Values-Aligned HR and the Thriving Work Ecosystem

Media Bio

Candice Elliott uses values-aligned HR best practices to help impact-driven leaders grow their teams, improve employee retention, create a supportive, safe work environment, and save money. 


With over 15 years of experience, a master’s degree in HR from Penn State, and a Senior Professional certification in California, she has the knowledge, experience, and skills your organization is looking for. Candice is passionate about supporting small businesses and nonprofits through monetary donations and time. During the pandemic, she donated hundreds  of work hours to support organizations during and through the challenges of the changing world of work.


Candice lives and works on the unceded land of Popeloutchom, home to the Awaswas speaking Uypi Ohlone, recently called Santa Cruz, California.

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