Center for High Performance
CFHP Center for High Performance
Issue No. 21 May 22, 2013


As many of you know, our beloved Franchee Harmon, Executive Vice President of the Center for High Performance, passed away on May 8th after a long and brave battle with cancer. We are dedicating this newsletter to her spirit, kindness and devotion to her clients. Franchee never let her illness define her; instead she chose to live life to the fullest.

At the time of her death, she was writing her doctoral dissertation on leadership courage. Although she was not able to finish the dissertation, she demonstrated leadership courage every day.

Franchee was a special part of the CfHP team, and I am proud to have worked alongside her for many years. I will sorely miss her.

With warm regards,

P.S. If you would like to make a contribution in Franchee’s memory, please send it to The Crystal Harmon Education Fund c/o Marcus Cunningham, CitiBank, 1525 N. Wells St., Chicago Il 60610.

Remembering Franchee

Below are just a few of the many notes CfHP received after Franchee's death.

Although I only spent a handful of days with Franchee, it was clear what a wonderful person she was – dynamic, smart, quietly powerful. She’ll definitely be missed.
—Lois Buwalda
Exelon Corp.

I hope all of the wonderful memories of Franchee bring comfort in the coming days — she was a truly spectacular woman.
—Kristi Hodges
Quinlan School of Business
Loyola University Chicago

I am so very sorry to hear of Franchee's passing. She had a very kind heart and a smile that just lit the room.
—Kelly S. Lyman
VP, IT PECO Solutions
PECO Energy/Exelon Corp.

I have never met anyone with a more positive attitude about life than Franchee. I think she leaves an important legacy both professionally and as a model for living with illness.
—Sharon Sutker McGowan
Complete Communications, Inc.

Franchee was a very special person and she touched many of us. There was something about the way in which she gave a compliment that really, really made you feel special. Franchee really cared about people and it showed in everything she did. She will definitely be missed.
—Audrey Todd
Exelon Corp.

In memory of Franchee Harmon

As Executive Vice President of the Center for High Performance, Franchee Harmon worked with high-powered executives. In her quiet way, she forced leaders out of their comfort zone and pushed them to approach strategy development holistically, taking into account not only what they want to do, but also why they are doing it.

“She changed the way we thought about the business, and what our role was within the company,” said Sonny Garg, Senior Vice President of Information Technology for Exelon Corp.

When Franchee helped Garg’s team build an IT strategy for the company, “it was different than what we had done before,” Garg said. “We were all pretty frustrated and there were points where we said, ‘We don’t get this. Why are we doing this?’ Nevertheless, Franchee persisted.

“Franchee insisted that we follow the process. ... It was a pretty bold move,” Garg commented. And it paid off. “She was right on. The strategy we came up with is phenomenal.”

(From left) Susan Lucia Annunzio, Dr. Andrew Lee, President of the Center for High Performance in AMEA, and Franchee Harmon at the Black Creativity Gala, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago on Jan. 19, 2013.

Franchee died on May 8 at 51, after a long battle with cancer. She is survived by her mother, six siblings, and many nieces and nephews, including Crystal Harmon, a teenaged niece who she cared for.

Franchee earned her bachelor's degree from Bradley University's School of Engineering and Technology and an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. She was a doctoral candidate in Organizational Development at Benedictine University at the time of her death. Before joining CfHP, she worked as Director of Strategy and Corporate Development for The Crucible Corp., a venture capital fund in Dublin, and as a director at PricewaterhouseCoopers in London.

Tony Quinones, CEO of Blue Northern Energy and BN2 Capital Holdings, said Franchee, who was board chair of BN2 Capital Holdings, was instrumental in the firms' strategy development, strategy execution and change management. During the process she helped him develop his analytical and strategic skills. "That's where she had the biggest impact for me," Quinones said.

“I never met a woman with so much strength. She always understood that certain people are called to serve at a level of excellence,” Quinones said. “I thought she was brilliant working with people and bringing it (excellence) out.”

Carlton Jones, chairman and president of Allston Trading LLC and a CfHP consulting client, called Franchee “hard working, diligent and very caring. ... She made it about everybody else. She took care of them the best she could.”

Franchee was “genuine, trustworthy, kind and whip smart,” Garg said. But he also noted that she is not easy to describe. “She was someone you had to experience, and if you experienced Franchee, you were a better person because of it.”

CFHP Center for High Performance

40 East Chicago Ave, Suite 183 • Chicago, Illinois 60611 • T 312.867.7710 • F 312.276.4256
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