Speaker Spotlight - Suzanne Loughlin

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Suzanne Loughlin | founder and general counsel | Crisis Risk Strategies, LLC

DRJ Spring 2019 | Monday, March 25, 2019 | General Session 2 | 9:20 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

This General Session 2 will focus on the changing landscape of risk, which falls into several categories: known, unknown, and the “unknown unknowns.” This March 25 session, titled “Managing Risk in a Rapidly Changing World,” will specifically focus on the “unknown unknowns.”

This session will be co-presented by Suzanne Loughlin and Ann Pickren.

According to Loughlin, identifying and managing risks in today’s environment is magnitudes beyond what have been managed in the past. Managing risks now means expanding the focus to independent risks but also includes the consideration of systemic risks, both internal and external. Today’s risk landscape does not resemble any other time. Futurists have said the “next 20 years will see more change than the last 300,” while “the last 20 years will have nothing to do with the next 20.” Loughlin says this is precisely the rate of change that poses the greatest risk of all.

She and Pickren will discuss emerging risk and the “unknowns” and how professionals can plan for the exposures presented by these risks. They will build out a crisis management framework to ensure readiness to respond to threats when they materialize so they don’t become crisis events.

Loughlin’s goal during this and any other presentation is to have the audience leave with the feeling that they can take immediate action based on something they heard. In fact, her goal is to empower her audience in two ways: to think differently about emerging risk and risk that falls in the category of the “unknowns,” and to position them to play a more strategic role in their organizations.

“The skills and discipline a professional develops in the business continuity industry are transferable to playing a key supporting strategic role in the C-suite and board,” says Loughlin. She wants her audience to leave with an understanding of the mindset and framework needed to identify threats and vulnerabilities in today’s rapidly changing world.

“They will hopefully leave knowing they can play a more strategic role with respect to ‘risk’ management in their organizations,” says Loughlin.

Loughlin says the people at DRJ Spring 2019 play a key role in the protection of critical organizational assets. “Our goal is to educate people on how to take something that should theoretically be ‘unmanageable’ and turn it in to just a disruption.” She adds that it’s also important to “slow the crisis down so you can focus on what really matters.”

Loughlin has spoken at past DRJ conferences and also regularly speaks at other national conferences. She is founder, EVP, and general counsel for CrisisRisk Strategies, LLC. She has been in the business resiliency and business continuity industry for more than 30 years. Loughlin has extensive consultative experience in risk management, crisis management, crisis communications planning and response on behalf of clients ranging from the world’s largest global companies to educational institutions and government entities.

Loughlin’s hands-on crisis management experience, and the approach to crisis communications and victim and family management that evolved from that experience, combined with her training and practice in legal exposures, enable her to provide critical decision support to clients in urgent crisis events. She is a regularly requested speaker by associations and organizations in all industry sectors. She has inspired hundreds of groups and thousands of listeners on these topics.
Before founding CrisisRisk, Loughlin spent 20 years in the insurance industry before she co-founded Firestorm Solutions, a nationally recognized crisis management firm which she sold in 2017. She served as chief administrative officer and general counsel of a NASDAQ company, director and chief administrative officer of a NYSE insurance holding company, a litigator with a major New York City law firm handling professional liability matters, and managing attorney of a law firm with multiple offices throughout the country. She has also completed extensive Emergency Management Institute training, including certification with FEMA. In addition, she is a member of the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals.

Loughlin serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations and Rhinebeck Bank. She has received numerous awards for her service, including the Anti-Defamation League’s “Americanism Award.” She is also co-author of the book Disaster Ready People for a Disaster Ready America.

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