Words from Lisa Orloff on International Women's Day
In honor of International Women’s Day, on March 8, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the many women who have been influential in the longstanding success of World Cares Center. They have been leaders in getting World Cares Center off the ground and ensuring our ability to deliver on our mission. Through their leadership and mentorship, they have changed the face of disaster response for the better. Diversity and inclusion are at the forefront of many conversations and we are proud to say that, for 20 years, we have been advocating, educating, and ensuring disaster response is an all-inclusive field. This is not only in those that we serve but to acknowledge and include in resource sharing the many diverse, hyper-local leaders, groups, and volunteers that serve their high-risk, underserved communities every day.
I would like to thank Polly Dufresne, who brought together our two groups that volunteered at the Javits Center to bring supplies to Ground Zero. Without her leadership and persistence, September Space and World Care Center would not have happened.
FEMA’s Marilyn Shigetani, Bernadette Freker, and Susan Jensen worked with our volunteers and encouraged us to incorporate and make official World Cares Center’s efforts and the launch of the September Space, our first initiative as a 501c3, caring for over 45,000 rescue workers, volunteers, and survivors.
Another exceptional woman is our very own Mimi Douze. Mimi lost her mother during the 2010 Haiti Earthquake and amidst her grief, stepped up to lead World Care Center’s team to help Haiti recover. For over ten years, Mimi has continued to lead the team in Haiti during critical times, including Hurricane Matthew.
Today, World Cares Center works side-by-side with so many fantastic women who are leading efforts in disaster management, changing the dynamic for the better, fostering inclusion and equity, and ensuring all those in need are served. Jill Goldstein, Jacqueline McBride, and Julianne Pannelli are just some of the amazing women we are lucky enough to work with.
Thank you to our longstanding World Cares Center Board Members Ana Raynes, Diane Albanese, Marie Cardoza. These women tirelessly work to support World Cares Center and our mission, on top of managing their impressive careers.
As we continue to usher in the new presidential administration, we cannot help but to mention and welcome our Vice President Kamala Harris. Her election is groundbreaking and provides a beacon of hope to many young women.
Lastly, I would like to honor Marion B. Orloff, a woman who excelled in commercial real estate when it was a male-dominated field. She balanced being a working woman, a caring mother, a wife, and a loyal friend. She helped pave a path that so many would follow and continue to follow.
With honor, respect, and gratitude.
Happy International Women's Day!
President & Founder, World Cares Center