DRI Foundation Women in Business Continuity Management Announces New Executive Committee Chair, Vice Chair

The DRI Foundation is pleased to announce new roles for members of the Women in Business Continuity Management (WBCM) group’s Executive Committee. Mitzi Harlor, CBCP, will step into the role of Committee Chair, while Leah Sawyer, MBCP, will fill the Vice Chair and Scholarship Lead positions. Former chair Diane Doering will continue to serve the committee as an advisor. 

“The WBCM Executive Committee has been a guiding force in the DRI Foundation’s efforts to provide resources for women in the industry,” said Al Berman, Foundation President. “By entering into leadership roles within the committee, Mitzi and Leah will be instrumental to its continuing evolution and advancement.”

“Every professional understands the strong link between relationships and opportunities. However, connecting with others is easier when you come into a space knowing that you share a similar set of past experiences and challenges,” said Harlor. “This commonality can collectively help navigate tricky challenges that female professionals know all too well. We’ve heard women in our industry ask for a different kind of professional space that unapologetically acknowledges the many hats they also wear in their personal lives. WBCM is proudly and actively working to build that environment and fill that need.”

“I don’t just think that business continuity is a good job. I believe passionately in business continuity as a transformer of lives and of organizations,” said Sawyer. “This is especially true for female practitioners, many of whom fall into the field and build careers here. My hope is that WBCM will be a place to connect, problem solve, and grow together.”

Harlor is a director on Marriott International’s business continuity team. She has been a BCM practitioner for nearly 20 years and is responsible for operational continuity and emergency response planning at corporate offices and managed hotels across more than 170 countries and territories worldwide.

Sawyer leads the Staples Inc. program for crisis management, business continuity, and disaster recovery. She has led the Crisis Management Team through pandemic, hurricanes, wildfires, and more – helping the company safeguard associates and ensure that customers such as hospitals get mission-critical supplies when faced with crises. She manages the IT disaster recovery program, and the business continuity program.

WBCM provides female business continuity, crisis management and disaster recovery professionals with learning and networking opportunities. It is led by an Executive Committee, made up of business continuity professionals representing a range of industries within the field.

The WBCM Scholarship has provided business continuity training and certification for nearly 50 women to date looking to enter or advance their careers in the resilience industry. It also provides a forum for professional women to connect with and support each other.

Both Harlor and Sawyer have previously been honored by the Foundation with the Distinguished Service Award. The award was presented at the 2022 DRI Awards of Excellence Gala, held at the DRI2022 conference in Las Vegas on Feb. 15, 2022.

For more information or to join WBCM, click here.