Congrats! WBCM Scholarship Recipient Now Employed by Capitol One

When it comes to progress and advancement, Maira Zahur understands the importance of a supportive community. Zahur is a recipient of the DRI Foundation’s 2021 Women in Business Continuity Management Scholarship, which grants individuals the resources to earn professional certifications like ABCP and CBCP, helps foster and build this community through comprehensive and experiential training. An experienced professional in the field of emergency management herself, Zahur believes that one of the best resources available for growth lies in the connections and networks around us. 

Maira first started emergency management through her work in South Asian countries with grassroots initiatives. She worked extensively on gender, inclusivity, and equity issues with UN agencies, international NGOs, government authorities, and more; her move to the United States in 2013 allowed her to continue her work through consulting. A recommendation from a peer led her to the DRI office, and it was there that she learned about the WBCM scholarship. Currently, Zahur works as a Senior Associate in Business Continuity and Emergency Management at Capital One.

“The DRI WBCM scholarship was a great opportunity for me,” Zahur says, speaking on the importance of the program. Zahur explains how the scholarship helped create professional avenues that would have otherwise been out of reach. “The certification opened up so many opportunities for me,” she says. “It gave me the terminology, it gave me the exposure, and it gave me the networking opportunities.”

Zahur believes that in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, these skills in business continuity are especially valued. “The pandemic has played a huge role in getting the whole sector recognized as something that should be taken seriously, not as siloed, but rather integrated into the whole company and organization,” she says. Zahur explains how many new fields, including hospitals, schools, and more, are recognizing the importance of the business continuity industry. “The demand is huge.”

For Zahur, the value of the scholarship extends far beyond the certification itself. She remarks that one of the greatest benefits of the program was the community she found. “The program introduces you to a range of stakeholders,” she says. “It gives you a community around women who are involved in business continuity.” Zahur continues, “This network we have in the WBCM community is such a special force. We have networks where we can learn from each other and be of support to each other.”

Zahur encourages others to find resources and support in their peers, as she did through the WBCM community. “Find those movers and shakers,” she says. “Reach out to network, reach out to connect, and there are some amazing people who will be helping you.”

Article by Michelle Masiello for DRI