WBCM Scholarship Spotlight: Sandra Placide, ABCP

Sandra Placide is the Founder of and Event Producer for Illumination Marketing & Events, LLC, a recipient of the DRI Foundation’s 2020 Women in BCM Scholarship, and now a certified ABCP with DRI International. 

What is your professional background? How did you get there?
I’m an award-winning meetings and events professional who has produced small to large scale corporate and social experiences across the United States for 19 years. I have successfully provided top-notch services for private clients and have been contracted to work with diverse production teams to produce myriad programs including but not limited to: conferences, trade shows, fundraisers, brand activations, weddings, award shows, holiday programs, board meetings, and festivals. Prior to my time in meetings and events, I was the lead Account Manager for a NYC-based media firm handling the U.S. Unilever and Bayer Corporation accounts, handling close to two billion dollars in advertising.

What does DRI certification mean to you?
It’s important to me to be well-trained and well-versed in the best practices of business continuity and the resilience industry. From my perspective, being certified reflects how strongly I value the knowledge base, how I endeavor to move forward with excellence, as well as signaling to others that I’ve put in the hard work to merit this certification.

What made you interested in business continuity?
Business continuity is an opportunity for me to not only increase my awareness in resilience but also to increase the level of preparedness of minority and women-owned businesses by sharing what I’ve learned and hopefully make a difference. Although there are numerous logistical aspects to what I do in event management and production, I’ve always had a keen interest in the risk management, security, and recovery areas of a program. Seeing how businesses are struggling to navigate this health crisis and others that may never operate again, has impacted me greatly. I’ve watched friends and colleagues doing all they can to stay afloat in creative and constructive ways.

Do you have any life experience that makes this field especially compelling?
Being from NYC, I’ve been impacted by super storms, tornadoes, terrorist threats and attacks. I’ve heard from friends and family as well about their experiences. Professionally, there are many processes that align when comparing business continuity and event management/production. Both fields require risk assessments, impact analysis, strategies, and rehearsals that stress test the plan and mitigate risks to ensure we protect life and the environment. I’ve learned how important it is to be resilient in mind, body, and spirit to make it through all that life throws at you – personally and professionally.