Passion for Mentoring Drives Disneyland Resort Leader

Jessica Sweetman

by , Communications Specialist, Disneyland Resort

Dana White joined Disneyland park as a holiday caroler in 1995, and over the course of her 28-year career, she has worked in Entertainment, Parades, Event Planning, Operations Training, character voices at the Walt Disney Studios, Labor Relations and, currently, as senior manager of Entertainment Integration and Guest Talent. One thing that’s never changed, however, is Dana’s passion for mentoring, leadership and creating inclusive opportunities for fellow cast.

Dana at a performance of “World of Color — ONE” with her Entertainment Integration team

“Leadership is hard, as it is not one-size-fits-all,” said Dana. “But when you lift somebody up, help them navigate through something extra challenging and watch them succeed, it is the most rewarding job there is.”

Dana also serves on the core leadership teams for two Business Employee Resource Groups: ENABLED, which supports cast with disabilities, and THRIVE@Disney, a cast-to-cast mentorship program.

Dana and Amanda Urtuzuastequi
Dana and Amanda Urtuzuastequi, one of her THRIVE mentees

As a mentor with THRIVE since the program launched in 2021, Dana has helped four mentees from various backgrounds pursue both their personal and professional dreams. “It is extremely rewarding to listen to your mentee solve problems through trials and tribulations while simultaneously celebrating them as they achieve milestones,” Dana said.

As we celebrate stories of women across The Walt Disney Company during Women’s History Month, Dana shares what the celebration means to her. “I am the youngest of four girls, and my mom raised us by herself. I feel like honoring women is always important, not just during the heritage month, as we have so many women to give thanks to for paving the way for us. I am grateful that I had a mom who worked so hard to help me realize that I can do and be anything I wanted to be.”

Asked what advice she would share with other women, she said: “Lift one another up. Nobody gets ahead by diminishing others. Put yourself out there, take a risk, and be genuine each and every step of the way. None of us have all of the answers, but we are here to figure them out together.”