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Business Continuity Institute appoints first African board member

The UK-based Business Continuity Institute (BCI) has appointed Louise Theunissen, GM of Consulting Services at ContinuitySA, as its first board member from the African continent. The appointment follows the announcement at the end of last year that Theunissen had been appointed as the organisation's regional representative in South Africa.

The BCI was established in 1994 to enable individual members to obtain guidance and support from fellow business continuity practitioners. It also plays an important role in promoting standards and quality issues globally, with the view to improving and maintaining a high standard of work in the business continuity market. The BCI currently has over 4 000 members in 85 countries.

“The BCI Board consists of 11 elected members who determine the strategic direction and growth path of the organisation,” says Theunissen. “The board has primarily consisted of BCI members and fellows based in the United Kingdom to date, a state of affairs the organisation wanted to change to reflect its global demographics.”

Members of the BCI have an opportunity to apply for board membership each year, as long as there are vacancies to fill. This year saw four seats vacant and a record 20 people put their names forward. The institution's members voted the following people to the board:

* Steve Mellish, FBCI * Kathleen Lucey, FBCI * Louise Theunissen, MBCI * Roberta LaRocca, MBCI

As the first board member from the African continent, Theunissen will be in a position to ensure growth of the institute's membership on the continent and act as a catalyst to the expansion of business continuity best practices throughout the region. The appointment also reflects the growing interest in and demand for business continuity management services on the continent that are aligned to global standards.

“The South African Forum of the BCI is well established and growing fast,” Theunissen adds. “This provides the BCI with a solid foundation as it expands into the rest of Africa. We envision setting up local forums in other African countries in the future to assist businesses in understanding and applying business continuity management best practices in their environments. Ultimately, we hope to set up the first African Forum made up of representatives from across the continent.”

The newly elected board members will officially take their post in January 2010.



ContinuitySA is Africa's leading provider of business continuity management and related services. The company boasts some of the continent's most highly skilled and qualified business continuity and disaster management experts who help companies, organisations and government departments of all sizes prepare for and deal with all eventualities. These include potential threats, events, incidences and unforeseen or sudden disruptions due to human error or natural events.

ContinuitySA also provides a variety of hosting solutions, ranging from co-located to fully managed virtualised environments, with their primary focus being to ensure its clients are able to address the resilience and recoverability of their IT services. These hosting services are complemented by managed backup and recovery services, virtual server replication and high availability solutions to satisfy any level of continuity requirement.

ContinuitySA operates the largest recovery facilities in southern Africa. It has a number of recovery centres in southern Africa with over 20 000 square metres of recovery facilities in Midrand, Gauteng. Smaller sites have been located in Cape Town, Gaborone, Botswana and Mozambique, and a joint venture has been established in Mauritius.

ContinuitySA. Our business is keeping you in business. Additional information about ContinuitySA can be found at