Business Continuity Management / Disaster Recovery

Lessons From Japan's Disaster

Organizations Need to Improve Business Continuity Planning
ChicagoFIRST's Brian Tishuk says local lessons can be learned from Japan, especially within the financial, government and healthcare sectors."What we see in Japan tells us a lot about how we should prepare in the face of our own catastrophe, whether it be a tsunami, earthquake or snow storm, as we've seen here in the Chicago area," Tishuk says. "We learned a lot about our need for better preparation during 9/11, whose effects really drove the formation of ChicagoFIRST. When Lower Manhattan was hit, we saw how the need for better communication between government and local, private entities was a necessity."

Tishuk, formerly with the U.S. Department of Treasury, now serves as the executive director of ChicagoFIRST, a not-for-profit association of private firms in Chicago.

ChicagoFIRST, founded in 2003, encourages collaboration and information-sharing among its members, combining local preparedness with national networks. After Chicago, Tishuk worked to established similar FIRST organizations in other U.S. markets. Today, nearly 24 FIRST organizations, comprising mostly financial institutions that work on Homeland Security and business continuity issues, are in operation throughout the U.S.

During this interview, Tishuk discusses:

  • Why more communication and information sharing needed between the private and public sectors;
  • How financial institutions are taking steps to ensure they can respond within hours to a major catastrophe or disaster;
  • Minimum steps the healthcare and government sectors should take when it comes to disaster recovery and preparation.

Tishuk became the first executive director of ChicagoFIRST, Chicago's financial-services industry coalition for business continuity, in February 2004. He is responsible for forging a relationship between financial institution members and government at all levels, as well as for developing best practices for business continuity. Prior to ChicagoFIRST, Tishuk worked for the Treasury Department, where he addressed an array of public policy issues affecting financial institutions. Following the events of Sept. 11, 2001, Tishuk led the Treasury's efforts to enhance the resiliency of financial institutions, establishing the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Compliance Policy and serving as its acting director and deputy director. Focusing attention on financial institutions in other parts of the country, Tishuk initiated a Treasury outreach effort that encouraged and facilitated cooperation among financial firms in Chicago, which led to the formation of ChicagoFIRST.




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