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IBAMAG.COM ISSUE 7.10 | $12.95

YOUNG GUNS 72 of the insurance industry’s most promising young superstars

MODERNIZING THE LONDON MARKET Can a slew of new initiatives turn things around at Lloyd’s?

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Brown & Riding chairman Chris Brown on why teamwork is vital in the wholesale space


Why program business could hold the key to honing your niche

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Carrier Submission Tracking

Risk Data Lookups

Application Delivery

Appetite Discovery

Product Recommendations

Carrier Integrations

Underwriter Management

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ISSUE 7.10

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UPFRONT 04 Editorial

What Tesla’s move into insurance means for the industry




Program business presents agents and brokers with ample opportunity to develop a specialty

06 Statistics

Key data that should be on your radar this month

08 Head to head

How can governments and insurers better work together on natural disaster recovery?

10 News analysis


T s t

Will Lloyd’s of London’s new modernization strategy right the ship?

12 Intelligence

This month’s big movers, shakers and new products

14 Workers’ comp update SPECIAL REPORT


Move over, baby boomers – these 72 young insurance professionals are quickly climbing to the top of the US insurance industry



Brown & Riding chairman Chris Brown has helped change the wholesale brokerage market from the inside out by making collaboration a priority




How Heffernan Insurance Brokers achieved impressive growth by putting its focus on sales

16 Technology update

How to get past the roadblock of legacy systems and traditional thinking

19 Opinion

Why centralized decision-making is vital for modern insurers

PEOPLE 63 Career path

Michael Costello didn’t waste any time in seizing an opportunity to specialize in cyber insurance

64 Other life

Going the distance with insurance exec and marathoner Frank Stuardi


STOP THAT 80-HOUR HUSTLE Working nonstop isn’t a recipe for success. Here’s how to take a break


Making the small business workers’ comp segment profitable



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To deliver the solution that wins the account.

AT RT SPECIALT Y, IT’S WHAT WE DO. Our wholesale specialty risk professionals have the expertise and tenacity to craft superior coverages for retail brokers’ toughest risks, regardless of account size. Contact your RT Broker at





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W O R K E R S ’ C O M P E N S AT I O N


27/09/2019 5:17:18 AM



Shifting gears in auto insurance


hen Tesla founder Elon Musk casts an idea into the public domain, it’s a fairly safe bet that he’s thrown some money behind it. Musk has approximately $19.5 billion to his name, so why not turn imagination into reality? In late August, it was the insurance industry’s turn to feel the power of Musk’s innovative mind. On August 28, Tesla announced it was launching an auto insurance offering called Tesla Insurance. The solution, which is currently only available in California, was described by the automaker as “a competitively priced insurance offering designed to provide Tesla owners with up to 20% lower rates, and in some cases as much as 30%.” The company went on to explain that “because Tesla knows its vehicles best, Tesla Insurance is able to leverage the advanced technology, safety and serviceability of our cars to provide insurance at a lower cost.”

Tesla isn’t the only automaker that’s pulling the handbrake on tradition Initially, Tesla will be acting in a broker capacity; Tesla Insurance policies are backed by Markel subsidiary State National. However, a Tesla spokesperson told The Financial Times that the company plans to eventually underwrite coverage as a full-fledged insurer. Tesla isn’t the only automaker that’s pulling the handbrake on tradition. Just days before Tesla’s insurance launch, Toyota announced a usage-based insurance program for owners of Toyotas equipped with the company’s Connected Services telematics system. The drivers’ data will be collected and sent to Toyota Insurance Management Solutions to determine if the driver is eligible for discounted auto insurance, then shared anonymously with the company’s insurer partners. While the concept of UBI isn’t new, there’s some concern within the industry that Toyota’s program will allow its partner insurers to cherry-pick the safest drivers to cover, leaving non-partners to cover the riskier drivers. If more automakers adopt this UBI program model, auto insurers outside their partnership sphere might have no choice but to raise rates in response. The team at Insurance Business America MAY 2017 EDITORIAL

Managing Editor Paul Lucas Editor Bethan Moorcraft Journalists Alicja Grzadkowska, Lauren Ingram, Nicola Middlemiss, Ksenia Stepanova News Writers Lyle Adriano, Terry Gangcuangco, Roxanne Libatique, Gabriel Olano Staff Writers Ellen Burkhardt, Tom Goodwin, Libby MacDonald, Joe Rosengarten, Ryan Smith Copy Editor Clare Alexander

CONTRIBUTORS Kevin Deveau, Aytekin Tank

ART & PRODUCTION Designer Joenel Salvador Production Manager Alicia Chin Production Coordinator Kim Kandravy Traffic Manager Ella Dayandante

SALES & MARKETING Vice President, US Market Cathy Masek Vice President, Sales John Mackenzie Media Sales Managers Chris Anderson, Desiree McCue Global Head of Communications Lisa Narroway

CORPORATE Chief Executive Officer Mike Shipley Chief Operating Officer George Walmsley President Tim Duce Chief Information Officer Colin Chan Human Resources Manager Julia Bookallil Editorial Inquiries Subscription Inquiries Advertising Inquiries,, Key Media 78O7 E. Peakview Ave., Suite 115 Centennial, CO 80111, USA tel: +1 720 316 0151 Offices in Denver, London, Toronto, Sydney, Auckland, Manila, Singapore, Seoul

Insurance Business America is part of an international family of B2B publications, websites and events for the insurance industry Insurance Business Canada T +1 416 644 874O Insurance Business UK T +44 20 7193 0935 Insurance Business Australia T +61 2 8437 47OO Insurance Business NZ T +61 2 8437 47OO Insurance Business Asia T +61 2 8437 47OO Printed in Canada


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Copyright is reserved throughout. No part of this publication can be reproduced in whole or part without the express permission of the editor. Contributions are invited, but copies of work should be kept, as the magazine can accept no responsibility for loss.

27/09/2019 5:12:30 AM

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W O R K E R S ’ C O M P E N S AT I O N


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CATASTROPHE LOSSES DOWN FOR FIRST HALF OF THE YEAR The first half of 2019 saw $44 billion worth of economic losses from natural and man-made catastrophes worldwide, according to recent data from the Swiss Re Institute. That’s down from $51 billion for the same period in 2018 and also significantly lower than the 10-year average of $109 billion for the first six months of the year.


Number of age-related discrimination charges filed with employers and the EEOC in 2017




$810.4 million

Amount employers paid to settle age discrimination charges filed with the EEOC between 2010 and 2018





Percentage of workers who reported that they had witnessed age discrimination in the workplace






REACHING HIGH-NET-WORTH BUYERS According to wealth researcher Altiant, State Farm and Progressive are the two best-known insurance brands among high-net-worth consumers in the US (those with assets of $1.2 million or more); their names are recognizable to nearly 100% of wealthy consumers.



Percentage of workers who told Hiscox they or someone they know had experienced age discrimination Source: 2019 Hiscox Ageism in the Workplace Study

40% 20% 0%




State Farm Progressive Nationwide








Liberty Mutual





UnitedHealth Group


Source: Views from the Wealthy Consumer, Altiant, June 2019


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H1 insured losses H1 uninsured losses

According to Swiss Re, only 43% of catastropherelated economic losses globally were covered by insurance during the first half of 2019, down from 51% in the first half of 2018. That’s primarily due to the fact that several large-scale disasters occurred in areas with low insurance penetration.

FY insured losses FY uninsured losses

43% ($19 billion)


Insured Uninsured

57% ($25 billion) 49% ($25 billion)


Insured Uninsured







51% ($26 billion) Source: Swiss Re Institute

Source: Swiss Re Institute

According to Chubb, human error, hacking and social engineering account for nearly two-thirds of the cyber attacks unleashed upon financial institutions.

Warranty and indemnity insurance claims notifications have risen by 293% across Europe, the Middle East and Africa since 2016, according to new research from Marsh, which attributed the significant spike to increasing demand for W&I insurance by buyers and sellers to protect M&As. 12%


11% 10%


9% 400

8% 7%


6% 5%



2016 Source: Cyber InFocus, Chubb, August 2019

Policies with a notification

Human error 21% Hacking 21% Social engineering 18% Misuse 11% Physical 8% Malware 8%


Number of policies placed




Source: Transactional Risk Insurance Claims Study, EMEA; Marsh JLT Specialty, July 2019

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How can governments help more after natural disasters? Is post-catastrophe coordination between governments and insurers in need of an overhaul?

Paul Kovacs

Arnold Mascali

Eric Sanders

Executive director Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction

President Procor Solutions + Consulting, a Brown & Brown company

SVP and head of claims QBE North America

“Insurers prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Governments, however, appear surprised when a catastrophe strikes. Governments can help insurers if they prepare a recovery plan before a disaster. Planning can integrate insurance payments for rebuilding and recovery into a comprehensive recovery plan. Winston Churchill argued that we should ‘never let a good crisis go to waste.’ Recovery planning for catastrophic risks can support a transformative increase in community resilience to future disasters. Planning to build back better may involve buyouts and investments in protective infrastructure. Governments can help by planning for recovery.”

“Coordination during disasters must improve. When public or private entities are eligible for recoveries or funding from both a government agency and a private insurer, the process can get delayed or stalled. Without experience with the interplay of insurance and FEMA, a recovery effort will likely encounter material differences in scope and/or pricing expectation, resulting in reimbursement delays. Over the last decade, too many policyholders have been caught up in a confusing and complicated evaluation process, leaving them susceptible to even greater losses. Public agency officers and insurance adjusters must work together, share information and expedite their respective determinations.”

“Both governments and insurers can always push to improve catastrophe recovery efforts, and our teamwork is increasingly sophisticated. For instance, after the 2018 California wildfires, first responders photographed damaged properties, and the California Department of Forestry and Protection posted them via an interactive online map. Insurers could access the map, search their insured locations and then proactively contact customers. We used a texting tool powered by AI to reach customers and begin evaluating the need for business interruption or additional living expenses. The teamwork allowed us to provide both emotional and economic relief much sooner than was previously possible.”

A CLOSER LOOK AT LOSSES Natural catastrophes accounted for $52 billion in insured losses in the United States in 2018, according to figures from Munich Re – a considerable drop from the $78 billion racked up the year before. Just over a third of those losses ($18 billion) were ascribed to wildfire, heat waves and droughts; almost another third ($15.6 billion) was attributable to hurricanes, while severe thunderstorms accounted for $14.1 billion. Cold-weather events – winter storms and cold waves – caused $3 billion in insured losses, while $1.2 billion was chalked up to floods and flash floods. Earthquakes and other geophysical events accounted for the balance.


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Change comes to Lloyd’s In the midst of the many challenges that have plagued the London market, will a new modernization strategy at Lloyd’s help to revitalize the global center of insurance?

LONG REGARDED as the center of the world’s insurance market, London has been hit with its fair share of challenges in recent years. From customers turning to local and emerging markets for insurance and reinsurance solutions, to a looming talent gap that has hit insurance companies in many parts of the world, experts have been warning about the threats to London’s position as the go-to global market for specialty commercial insurance for several years. “What people are concerned about is the fact that firstly, the share of the global insurance market that comes to London is declining,” says Jamie Althorp, managing director for Accenture Financial Services

Low interest rates have also become the new normal, which is impacting insurance business in many regions, but certainly in London, where insurers can’t make the same returns on investments as they once did. Yet in spite of these and other challenges, the market continues to have a lot going for it. “London is still a very vibrant insurance market, and that will remain for the time to come because it’s got that reputation, and ultimately, insurance is about trust,” Althorp says. “You have to trust that the organization you’re insuring with is going to be able to pay in the event of a claim, and London and Lloyd’s provide that trust. Most importantly, you’ve got a critical mass of talent here –

“London is still a very vibrant insurance market, and that will remain for the time to come” Jamie Althorp, Accenture Financial Services and leader of the company’s London markets and specialty practice. “The global insurance market is growing quicker than the London insurance market, and that would therefore suggest that there’s a high proportion of insurance that is being written outside of London.”


brokers, underwriters, lawyers and various experts that you need to make a market work. The concern is that those things will erode over time.” The focus on cutting costs hasn’t made brokers’ jobs any easier. There’s been a lot of emphasis on trying to reduce costs

within insurance organizations as they strive for efficiency, and that’s been the case for brokers and underwriters as well. The pace of mergers and acquisitions is likewise putting pressure on everyone in the global insurance value chain. According to Clyde & Co.’s Insurance Growth Report, the first half of 2019 saw 222 completed M&A deals worldwide, up from 196 in the second half of 2018. That represents a 13% increase in the volume of transactions – the highest since the first half of 2015.  This challenging environment has taken its toll on Lloyd’s, but it’s responding to the obstacles head-on. In the midst of a tough year during which it reported a pre-tax loss of £1 billion for 2018 and made headlines for a boys’ club culture punctuated by harassment, Lloyd’s unveiled what it called “a bold new strategy” aimed at transforming the centuries-old exchange’s future. The Future

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LLOYD’S GWP BY REGION Over the past decade, the share of North American gross written premium at Lloyd’s has increased (from 45% in 2009 to 51% today), while the proportion coming from the UK and Europe has shrunk from a combined 36% in 2009 to a total of 27% today. 60%









US and Rest of the Canada Americas

14% UK




Rest of Central Asia Rest Europe and Asia- of the Pacific world Source: Aon/Lloyd’s

at Lloyd’s initiative brings to the table six key ideas that will guide the company’s response to the challenges it’s facing, as well as help the market capitalize on opportunities and deliver value to customers.

tion, next-generation claims services, and an ecosystem of services that lend market participants a hand in developing new business and providing high-quality services to their clientele.

“[Lloyd’s is] being very collaborative in a way that previous iterations of modernization work … hadn’t been” Christopher Croft, LIIBA The proposed ideas, which are now being rolled out, include a platform for complex risk that enables digital placement, flexible capital that can access diverse risks on the platform, the launch of the Lloyd’s Risk Exchange for the placement of less complex risks, the Syndicate-in-a-Box solu-

“Implicit in [this strategy] is that they’re being very collaborative in a way that previous iterations of modernization work at Lloyd’s hadn’t been,” says Christopher Croft, chief executive of the London & International Insurance Brokers’ Association [LIIBA]. “There’s broker repre-

sentation on the global advisory board, and at the lower level, we have a lot of our practitioners plugged into the relevant workstreams who are providing feedback, but are also crucially seeing things change as a result of that feedback on occasion – so it’s not just a PR exercise.” And while implementing the sweeping changes won’t be easy, Croft believes the market is on the right track to patching its profitability gaps, along with addressing other issues. “Actually doing it will be a challenge,” he says. “It’s a market without a great reputation for implementing change programs, so regardless of what you might think about the individual workstreams, there’s a big job to do. The sooner they can start demonstrating some delivery momentum, the better, because that’s where those who wish to be skeptical will concentrate their skepticism.”

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Allianz purchased the Brazilian insurer’s automobile and property insurance portfolio for $741 million

Brown & Brown

CKP Insurance, Yozell Associates

CKP serves clients in the agricultural industry, while Yozell offers group employee and executive benefits products and services

The Hilb Group

Mackie Financial Group

MFG focuses on employee benefits, Medicare supplemental/advantage, individual life insurance and annuities

Insurance Technologies Corporation

Smart Harbor

Smart Harbor provides digital technology to insurance agents

Risk Strategies

National Insurance Consulting Group

NICG is an employee benefits and human capital consulting firm founded in 2014

Ryan Specialty Group

The Suitelife

A hotel specialist, The Suitelife will become part of RSG Underwriting Managers

SSL Endeavour

Worldlink Holdings

SSL Endeavour has finalized its acquisition of the aviation brokerage and MGA

JenCap Holdings

Aran Insurance Services Group

The deal places JenCap among the largest specialty insurance distribution platforms in the US

QBE North America enhances EPL offering

QBE North America has launched QBE Business Resource Edge, a service designed to help reduce the risk of harassment, discrimination and other employment practices violations. Offered as part of QBE North America’s employment practices liability offering, QBE Business Resource Edge includes confidential advice from employment law attorneys, resources for HR/risk management issues, live and recorded webinars on HR topics, on-demand sexual harassment training, an employee handbook and policy-building tool, and customizable regulatory updates via email.

Brown & Brown makes back-to-back deals

In the span of two days, Brown & Brown announced two successive acquisitions: group benefits provider Yozell Associates and agricultural specialist CKP Insurance. Founded in 1960, Boston-based Yozell Associates serves both for-profit and nonprofit organizations with group employee and executive benefits products and services. With offices in Florida, Arizona and New Mexico, CKP Insurance offers brokerage services for clients operating in the US agricultural industry, along with personal P&C insurance services to customers in Florida. After the deals close, both Yozell and CKP will become stand-alone operations within Brown & Brown’s retail segment.


Chubb targets middlemarket manufacturers

Chubb has introduced a new a platform for middle-market manufacturers. Designed to fill the gaps in traditional insurance programs, the CoverPlus platform addresses exposures such as scalable pollution liability, product withdrawal expense, errors & omissions and cyber liability. “CoverPlus is a dynamic platform designed to offer a wide range of specialized insurance products and services beyond traditional liability insurance to proactively support businesses in the manufacturing sector as they face new exposures within a rapidly changing industry,” said Chubb North America SVP Ernie Salas.

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PEOPLE Hiscox adds to construction offering

Hiscox has enhanced its architects and engineers portfolio with the addition of tailored solutions for all construction professionals involved on a job site, including architects and engineers, general contractors, artisan subcontractors, and real estate developers and owners. Designed with the unique concerns and exposures of general contractors and subcontractors in mind, the expanded coverages include contractors’ pollution liability, broad professional liability triggers and rectification expenses for design defects, along with protective indemnity for general contractors, owners and developers.

CNA launches modular management liability

CNA has launched Epack 3, a revamped management liability policy for businesses and nonprofit organizations. The modular management liability product compartmentalizes the six optional coverages – directors & officers liability; employment practices liability; fiduciary liability; crime; kidnap, ransom, and extortion; and nonprofit directors & officers liability – from the rest of the policy. This allows CNA to update only the relevant sections of the policy as needed. Epack 3 also features streamlined language and reduced terms and conditions to make it easier for clients to understand.

Tesla Insurance hits the roads

Electric vehicle maker Tesla has officially launched Tesla Insurance in the state of California. The company described the solution as “a competitively priced insurance offering designed to provide Tesla owners with up to 20% lower rates, and in some cases as much as 30%.” According to the company, the pricing “reflects the benefits of Tesla’s active safety and advanced driver assistance features.” Tesla said existing drivers will be able to purchase its insurance policy “in as little as one minute,” while first-time Tesla owners will be able to get an insurance quote prior to delivery.





Colin Daly

JLT Specialty US

CAC Specialty

Executive vice president and financial lines co-leader

Dondi Dix

Dairy Farmers of America

Lockton Cos.

Senior vice president and chief people officer

Nate Hughes

Cobb Strecker Dunphy & Zimmermann

Holmes Murphy

Account executive

Steven Farr



Head of global upstream energy

Stephanie Lynch

Philadelphia Insurance Companies

Satellite Agency Network Group

Agency development field specialist

Dour Manwaring


Liberty Mutual

Chief underwriting officer for national insurance, public entities and programs

Gerardo Monroy

CNO Financial Group


SVP, US innovation strategy and execution

Jon Tellekamp


Liberty Mutual

Chief underwriting officer for national insurance, excess casualty

Jessie Witherow


Ames & Gough

Assistant vice president

Ames & Gough names new assistant VP

Ames & Gough has promoted Jessie Witherow to the role of assistant vice president. Witherow originally joined Ames & Gough in 2006 and most recently served as a senior account manager, charged with overseeing the company’s professional liability small-market program for architects and engineers throughout the mid-Atlantic region. “I’m pleased to announce Jessie’s appointment as an assistant vice president,” said Ames & Gough president and CEO Dan Knise. “She has been a stalwart contributor to the firm’s success for many years and epitomizes what it means to be an Ames & Gough professional – client-focused, a team player, expert in her area of responsibility, open to learning, and professional in her approach and demeanor.”

AXA XL appoints global head of upstream energy

AXA XL has named Steven Farr as its new global head of upstream energy. Based in London, Farr will head the insurer’s global upstream energy team and develop its upstream energy book, while expanding on and delivering underwriting strategy and product profitability. “[Steve] has considerable experience in underwriting upstream energy risks and has built up a stellar reputation in the market, thanks to his close relationships and technical expertise,” said Huw Jones, chief underwriting officer for global energy at AXA XL. “I have every confidence he will succeed in this new role and continue to be a strong partner to our clients and brokers across the world.”

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WORKERS’ COMP UPDATE NEWS BRIEFS Paragon launches nationwide workers’ comp program

Managing general agency Paragon Insurance Holdings has launched a new nationwide workers’ comp program. Available through Paragon’s retail agency partners, the program includes comprehensive in-house underwriting authority, no experience modification or territory restrictions, and claims, loss control and safety services. The program is available to various industries, including construction and artisan contractors, landscaping, transportation, janitorial, agricultural, wholesalers and dealers, healthcare, waste management, manufacturing, and rental equipment dealers.

Liberty Mutual teams up with Duck Creek to manage claims

Liberty Mutual has partnered with Duck Creek Technologies to develop a next-generation workers’ compensation claims management system. Through the multi-year partnership, the two companies will build a new, fully integrated workers compensation claims management system that blends functional and technical capabilities. “The new system will let us continue to produce better outcomes for injured employees quickly and efficiently by replacing two legacy systems with a single state-of-the-art platform,” said Liberty Mutual SVP Wesley Hyatt.

MEMIC hires new underwriter to build on growth in Georgia

Workers’ compensation specialist MEMIC Group has appointed Kim Wilson as a senior production underwriter in Atlanta to support its continued growth in the Georgia market. Wilson has more than 15 years of insurance experience, beginning her career as a casualty


claims adjuster before moving into personal lines underwriting and then commercial lines underwriting. MEMIC Group is a super-regional workers’ compensation insurer that insures more than 20,000 employers and holds more than $1.4 billion in assets.

Marsh introduces workers’ comp claims analytics platform

Marsh has launched a new analytics platform designed to aid workers’ compensation clients in achieving superior claims outcomes. The new Blue[i] Claims platform uses Marsh’s claims data and expertise to create benchmarking capabilities that can help clients identify cost-saving opportunities. Armed with the platform’s data, employers can implement solutions such as targeted safety programs to reduce injury frequency, identify complex claims early for prompt intervention, expedite the close-out of legacy claims, and improve collaboration with claims administrators.

The gig economy could present new workers’ comp challenges

As gig workers become more commonplace, states are changing their laws to accommodate this relatively new generation of employees. California recently passed Assembly Bill 5, which opens up the possibility for gig economy workers to be reclassified as employees rather than independent contractors, entitling them to workers’ comp protection. “It’s good in as much as that individual who’s injured now has the ability to be taken care of. It’s bad in as much as some of the businesses who are operating may not have been doing that particular contract … with eyes wide open,” said Matthew Zender of AmTrust Financial Services, adding that a business’s workers’ comp premiums could increase if a gig worker gets injured on the job.

A small but significant segment Why extreme efficiency  is key to unlocking profitability in small business workers’ comp 

Small business workers’ compensation is a significant line of business for insurance agents, but from a profitability standpoint, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for agents to find benefits in going after small business workers’ comp. “Our average workers’ compensation policy size is just under $7,000, so if the agent’s getting a 10% commission, they’re going to get $700 for placing that piece of business,” says Douglas D. Dirks, president and CEO of Employers Holdings, a nationwide small business insurance specialist. “So we have to provide them with an extremely efficient process. We have to provide such a compelling value proposition, both for the agent and for the insured, that they don’t even consider taking that quote to another market.”  Employers achieves this efficiency by deploying technology. Within the past few months, the insurer has rolled out a new tech offering that enables it to put a bindable quote in an agent’s hand within two minutes, ten times faster than the average 20-minute turnaround.   “To do that requires access to a considerable amount of data – both our own data, as well as third-party data – and it requires technology that can access that data in real time,” Dirks says. “We envision this being a technology that would simply require the agents to give us one piece of information – perhaps the name and street address, or an identification number of the business – and we could

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turn around a quote almost in real time.   “It is becoming increasingly difficult for agents to find this business attractive from a profitability standpoint,” he adds. “We view that as something we can fix for them by providing them with a technology solution that allows them to achieve the required levels of efficiency. There are great opportunities for agents in this market space if they

“I don’t think workers’ compensation needs to be complex, so we … are striving to simplify wherever we can” can partner with an insurer that will push through the investment in technology that’s needed in order to help agents write this business profitably.” On top of efficiency, small business accounts also need simplicity, Dirks says. Small business owners usually wear many hats, meaning they’re not likely to have specialized knowledge of insurance or risk management, or the time to do adequate research into their risk transfer needs.   “It’s our responsibility as an industry to educate and also, importantly, to simplify the workers’ compensation insurance process,” Dirks says. “There’s always this concept of complexity around insurance, which, in some difficult risks in other lines of insurance business, is certainly the case. But I don’t think workers’ compensation needs to be complex, so we at Employers are striving to simplify wherever we can. Whether it’s in business processing or the way we interact with an insured, we’re trying to eliminate complexity wherever we can.”  


Kirstin Marr   President

Working around loss history


Years in the industry 7 Fast fact Valen Analytics’ Unavailable Loss History Model for workers’ compensation is a predictive model that can accurately price and assess risk when there is no loss history available

How does Valen Analytics’ Unavailable Loss History Model work?  The model uses a combination of third-party and synthetic variables derived from Valen’s extensive workers’ compensation data consortium – which is a granular data set of approximately 650,000 policies presenting $7.6 billion in premium – to indicate risk quality based upon how similar policies have performed in the past. 

What are you trying to achieve with this predictive model? In terms of risk selection, a predictive model can help an insurer determine whether a policy fits into its underwriting appetite and its portfolio. Predictive models also help insurers to price risk appropriately, and the way that’s done across the board is to look at loss history experience and claims. However, a lot of policies don’t have that loss history available, especially if they’re smaller businesses or startup ventures. For some of our carriers, depending on the market segments they’re going after, it can be 50% or more of their small commercial books that lack loss history information.  

How are you able to accurately score insurance policies without loss history data? Through our data consortium, we’ve been able to amass a number of policies, which, at the time they were written, didn’t have a loss history, but because we’ve had our data consortium maturing for so long, those policies now have a loss history. That allows us to go back and figure out how to predict for policies that are coming in today without that loss history. It’s the size, breadth and depth of our data consortium that allows us to do that.      

Why is this solution good for small business risks?   Prior loss experience has traditionally been one of the key parameters in evaluating the quality of the risk. Yet insurers can score up to 70% of small-premium policies without any loss information using models that aren’t built for these types of policies. By leveraging Valen’s workers’ compensation data consortium, our new model is finely tuned to answer the question “How do similar policies perform?” as an indicator of risk quality.  As insurers pursue the small commercial market, the ability to accurately assess risk while collecting less information on the application is crucial to gaining market share. We think our Unavailable Loss History Model will help our carrier partners get into the small commercial market. The reality is, there’s no easy way to get into this market and to spend an enormous amount of time manually evaluating a policy like they would for medium- or large-sized accounts – insurers simply can’t make money as a business doing that. So they have to invest in more advanced, automated data solutions that enable them to assess the risk, validate the business, price it accurately and feel confident that they’re managing the risks of their own growing portfolios.

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Beating back legacy Legacy systems remain one of the major roadblocks to technology and innovation in insurance 

Legacy systems often go hand in hand with traditional mindsets, making the inability to innovate more of a people problem. To combat the issue of legacy thinking, insurance companies are looking to hire more data- and tech-literate employees, but they’re struggling to attract talent.   “We see that insurance companies are facing difficulties in finding the right

“Legacy tech infrastructure is a major bottleneck for data ingestion and curation”

Insurers worldwide are increasingly looking to advanced analytics to unlock tangible value and gain a competitive advantage, according to a recent report from the Swiss Re Institute. However, there are plenty of obstacles to their success, including legacy systems, traditional mindsets and a scarcity of tech-savvy talent. “Legacy tech infrastructure is a major bottleneck for data ingestion and curation,” says Kassie Bryan, senior vice president and head of solutions for P&C Americas at Swiss Re. “There are large P&C carriers out there who can access good data with some predictive value, but it will take some significant time


and effort to ingest and curate that data if they have an older tech stack. Meanwhile, there are next-generation carriers who have a more modern tech infrastructure, who can quickly ingest these new data sources to test it and evaluate whether or not they want to use it.”   Part of the issue with legacy technology is the cost and organizational effort required to transform it into something that can incorporate advanced analytics. Some organizations have gotten around this by building layers of technology integration that connects to their legacy systems, but whether that’s an adequate long-term strategy remains to be seen.  

Toyota launches usage-based insurance program

Toyota Insurance Management Solutions [TIMS], an independent P&C insurance agency owned by the automaker, has launched a usage-based insurance program for owners of cars equipped with Toyota’s Connected Services telematics system. Driving data collected by the system will be sent to TIMS, which will use it to determine if the driver is eligible for a discounted auto insurance quote. Toyota said the information will also be shared anonymously with the auto insurance providers that partner with TIMS.


talent that have skill sets across data science, risk knowledge and technology,” Bryan says. “For a typical insurance workforce today, even though employees are trained in specialized risk selection and pricing, it’s unrealistic to expect them to be able to convert into data scientists. However, we do think it’s beneficial to train the existing workforce to develop an analytical frame of mind so that they can become better users of new solutions and technologies. This kind of training can prepare an organization for a cultural shift towards a more intense adoption of new technologies. So tackling the legacy issue not only requires new skill sets and expertise from outside of the traditional insurance sphere, but also training and upscaling of the existing workforce so that they can understand what data science and engineering can bring to insurance.”

ITC acquires digital technology firm Smart Harbor

Insurance Technologies Corporation [ITC] has acquired Smart Harbor, a company that specializes in digital technology for insurance agents. Smart Harbor provides technical expertise, industry knowledge, and products and services such as websites, smart forms, SEO, and data analytics capabilities to more than 1,000 independent agents. “This acquisition will help us expand our service offerings to our clients and continue our leadership in insurance agency marketing solutions,” said ITC CEO Laird Rixford.

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Years in the industry 18 Fast fact Electric car maker Tesla launched its own auto insurance offering in the state of California at the end of August 

How Tesla could alter auto insurance How significant is the launch of Tesla Insurance? This has been a long time coming. Vehicle manufacturers have been wanting to launch their own insurance offerings, all the way back to the days of General Motors Acceptance Corporation [GMAC]. For Tesla, being a disruptor in the auto industry, it was only logical that they would bring this to their drivers. The insurance companies precipitated this happening by charging astronomical costs to Tesla drivers to insure their cars. That really came down to how expensive it is to repair Tesla cars and how they can only be repaired by Tesla-specific dealers.   The launch of Tesla Insurance is signaling a wider trend in the auto manufacturing industry. Whenever you have auto manufacturers involved in the insurance process, they want to make sure they create additional value. For example, they might insist their vehicles can only be serviced by a licensed, certified dealer using original manufacturer’s parts. Those value propositions are starting to come through into what consumers want bundled with their auto insurance. The cost of insurance for Tesla drivers is astronomical. Cutting rates by 20%, and sometimes even more, is going to drive a lot of Tesla drivers, who are already loyalists to Tesla, to check off that extra box and get auto insurance included in their current payment, with the value-added guarantee of certified repairs with certified parts.   

Why was insurance so pricey for Tesla drivers? It’s the issue of severity versus frequency. While Tesla

NICB taps into anti-insurance fraud analytics

The National Insurance Crime Bureau [NICB] has partnered with analytics provider Globlue Technologies to give customers access to Globlue’s ARKHOS Data Fusion intelligence platform, which integrates customers’ internal data with external third-party intelligence. Insurance companies will be able to use the platform to perform live searches across NICB, internal claims data and external sources and “will gain another advantage in the early detection and prevention of fraud,” said NICB head Joe Wehrle.


vehicles might be less prone to damage, when they are damaged, the costs to repair are astronomical. But that’s no different than other car manufacturers. As more cars get more autonomous features and sensors, the severity of losses will continue to go up. Tesla was just ahead of the curve in the terms of the technology they had in their vehicles. 

Tesla says it can provide insurance because it “knows its vehicles best.” What does that mean? Tesla cars record something like a gigabyte of data every minute. They have really granular data on how all their vehicles are operating, through cameras, sensors and usage-based insurance technology. The amount of data that comes out of these cars is infinitely more than what you would get out of a dongle plugged into your dashboard. And so Tesla can use that data to create a UBI profile that is above and beyond anything else in the industry.   

Do you think other auto manufacturers will follow in Tesla’s footsteps?   Absolutely. I know of other vehicle manufacturers that are looking to create a more seamless customer experience. It’s a point-of-sale transaction. They currently offer gap insurance, tire insurance, undercarriage insurance – all these different insurance coverages – so why not offer full auto insurance? As they better understand their consumers and their vehicles, they’re looking to provide their own insurance services. 

Clyde & Co. partners with terrorism risk startup

Global insurance law firm Clyde & Co. has partnered with Assess Threat to allow its clients to access the startup’s Terrorism Risk Assessor product, which uses a combination of real-time and historical data to assess the exposure of any asset or location to terrorism. “This collaboration represents a significant venture into lawtech for the firm,” said Michael Tooma, managing partner at Clyde & Co. Australia. “This unique client solution will build business resilience in an era of global volatility.”

Flood-prediction insurtech to launch in the US

Australian insurtech startup FloodMapp, which has developed realtime flood-prediction technology, is set to expand to Texas and Florida. FloodMapp’s proprietary technology takes in real-time rainfall and river height data, along with digital elevation models, then uses Big Data, hydrology, hydraulics and machine learning to produce a live, interactive map that predicts expected flood inundation with 96% accuracy. FloodMapp has already run a proof of concept with one of the largest insurers in the US.

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Front and center Adopting centralized decisioning will allow insurers to meet disruption head-on, writes Kevin Deveau DIGITAL DISRUPTION is continuing to redefine the insurance industry, impacting all stages of the customer life cycle across all functional areas, including claims, underwriting and reinsurance. Carriers that don’t stay a step ahead of industry shifts could find themselves dangerously exposed to new competitive threats, such as individualized policies. Insurance is not ‘one size fits all’ anymore. As in every other industry, consumers are looking for customized products that suit their situation. It’s time that carriers took each policyholder’s unique situation into account when assessing which coverages and policies to offer. To get to this point, however, insurance companies need to start by treating their decisions and strategies as assets to be directed at this goal. To avoid falling behind the times, centralized decisioning must be embraced as a new paradigm that benefits the industry. Centralized decisioning creates a collaborative and transparent view into all decisioning elements across the enterprise that can be tailored to each stakeholder’s unique requirements. This results in tangible, measurable and valuable business strategies that leverage carriers’ past IT and decisioning investments while allowing for the latest innovations in communications, analytics and optimization. The all-inclusive use of decision assets (rules, analytic models, strategies, etc.) from across an organization creates a force multiplying effect with profound business implications. This gives leaders the ability to create decisioning strategies that are consistent, transparent and expandable. Insurance companies use many different

systems – underwriting, pricing, paying claims, billing – each of which has an important function. These systems, however, don’t always use the same standards of decisioning, are often outdated and don’t always communicate with one another properly. Transactional decisions are housed in virtual silos that limit the ability of those in different areas to manage and use the information strategically. Centralizing the decision-making assets allows all decisions about policyholders to be

More and more insurance companies are trying to add sophisticated analytic models to their existing processing systems, but the old systems are often not capable of incorporating them and running them efficiently. Centralizing decisioning can help with this. A single repository for analytic models allows for a more structured way to deploy, manage, monitor, document and update models. Programs that provide this service, such as FICO’s Decision Management platform, enable internal and external data sources to be continuously transformed into useful, actionable and measurable strategies to help drive business forward and improve the customer experience. Rather than waiting for the next wave of disruption to hit, savvy carriers are looking to a centralized decisioning platform to maintain a competitive advantage. By proactively pursuing a strategy of true data-driven customercentricity, insurance carriers can better customize their products and services and offer pre-tested, high-precision solutions targeting the right markets and customer segments. Centralized decisioning not only simpli-

“Centralizing the decision-making assets allows all decisions about policyholders to be connected and makes for a more complete relationship with the policyholder” connected and makes for a more complete relationship with the policyholder. This increases opportunities to provide better service or suggest policy modifications. It also offers business users outside of IT more control over the decision-making process, as the interface to change decision assets can be standardized and simplified. Knowledge of coding within individual systems would no longer be a requirement, allowing business users to better manage company goals and freeing the IT department to focus on other priorities. Analytics software and machine learning will enable insurance organizations to help settle claims, mitigate fraud, communicate with policyholders and underwrite risk.

fies the process for the insurer, it also helps the policyholder. Housing all the decisioning assets in one place speeds up the process while allowing the insurer a 360-degree view of the policyholder. Policyholders could receive quicker responses and benefit from savings on plans that are designed specifically for them. In light of the latest advancements in data analytics and systems management, it’s time for a 360-degree solution that allows policies to become about the policyholder. Kevin Deveau is the North American insurance practice lead at FICO and the VP and managing director of FICO Canada. His team is responsible for growing FICO’s insurance market share and strengthening relationships with clients.

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STANDING OUT FROM THE CROWD Brown & Riding chairman Chris Brown tells IBA how fostering a culture of cooperation has allowed the wholesale brokerage to set itself apart

TO SAY THAT Brown & Riding chairman Chris Brown got into the company on the ground floor would be an understatement. Brown had been working as an assistant underwriter in Los Angeles for just a year when an opportunity to join the national wholesale brokerage arose. It was 1985, and the brokerage, founded just five years prior in San Francisco, had fewer than 10 employees. Brown’s job was to get the word out in Southern California about the new player in a challenging wholesale market. “I was the new person in town, and it taught me about the importance of differentiation and doing something different than everybody else,” Brown says. “I think it’s one of the core themes that have driven me throughout my career.” Granted plenty of autonomy, Brown proved his worth with early successes in growing the business, though more challenging times lay ahead. The brokerage has always had a concentration in construction, but when the 1992 recession hit, it created “very painful conditions for us,” Brown recalls. “We were challenged to even survive, but I always like to look at the difficult times as really what helps to shape you and helps you understand who you are and what you’re about. That helped to really shape the values of the company.”


Team player Brown & Riding’s core values were cemented as it grew into one of the top 10 wholesale brokerages in the US by premium volume. In 1990, Brown became president of the company; in 2012, he took on his current role as chairman. During his formative years at Brown & Riding, when he was building relationships with retail brokers and other

also throughout the industry. If our standards are high enough, then they help to raise the bar for everyone else.” In addition to an emphasis on quality and professionalism, Brown also put a high priority on teamwork. “I’ve always been a big believer in the power of people working together and cooperation within the wholesale brokerage business,”

“I’ve always been a big believer in the power of people working together and cooperation within the wholesale brokerage business ... We set our company up to support teamwork in ways that probably most others haven’t done” industry professionals, he realized that the wholesale side of the business was rarely being associated with quality. “Some people viewed it as the segment of the industry you went to if you didn’t have many other options, and I didn’t want to be associated with anything like that,” he says. “So it became a calling of mine to try to help raise the professional standards and quality standards not only within Brown & Riding, but

he says. “Teamwork can be a pretty unusual thing, even today, so we set our company up to support teamwork in ways that probably most others haven’t done.” That value is writ large in the company’s ownership structure – it’s 100% owned by 34 key employees, similar to a partnership. That shared interest in the success of the company goes a long way to help support Brown & Riding’s culture of teamwork, Brown says. The

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PROFILE Name: Chris Brown Title: Chairman Company: Brown & Riding Based in: Los Angeles Years in the industry: 36 At a glance: Brown & Riding specializes in insurance programs for larger residential, commercial and public works construction projects, as well as for developers and contractors

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company’s leaders also encourage employees to embrace specialization as a core strategy. “I’m thankful for the opportunity I was given and feel very fortunate to work with so many incredibly talented people at B&R,” Brown says. “They embrace working together across offices and teams, and it helps everyone achieve more than we could on our own.”

Navigating the market In addition to developing its guiding principles, Brown & Riding has taken strategic steps to attain its position as one of the top wholesalers in the country. In 2010, the company merged with Seattle-based Alexander Morford & Woo. A few years later, B&R’s leaders found another

and maintain the culture we have, and we think the best way to do that is having a robust internal training and development program.” Since he joined B&R three decades ago, Brown has witnessed a marked change in the reputation of the wholesale business. “The marketplace views wholesalers now as a much more valuable and important piece of how business is transacted,” he says. “I think wholesalers can provide a very cost-effective service and variable-cost option to retail brokers hiring their own internal experts. The wholesale marketplace does that much more efficiently. The challenge that exists is how do you provide a level of service, and give the retailers that trust and confidence in the

“As long as we keep growing, we will remain employee-owned and independent ... That ownership structure allows us to support the culture and values we’ve already established” similarly minded company to merge with: Chicago-based Travis-Pedersen & Associates. These moves expanded the wholesale brokerage’s geographic reach and clientele. “It gave us a great platform to build on, and today we’re double the size we were when we put the three companies together,” Brown says. The current M&A market is competitive and expensive, so while B&R’s leaders are keeping an eye out for opportunities, they’re also focused on creating an environment where people can kickstart and build their careers. “We’ve recruited easily 100 kids out of college who started their careers with us,” Brown says. “We also have a number of partners in the firm who all joined us at entry-level positions but moved up through merit-based efforts to becoming shareholders. We have a very good track record of developing people internally. It’s important to us to strengthen


wholesaler, without being part of the same company? The opportunity that I see is to provide a level of service and trust and confidence in what we do.” While mergers aren’t on the top of the company’s to-do list right now, B&R continues to focus on growth. Its retail broker clients are growing, too, and are looking for fewer wholesale broker relationships. As a result, Brown says, the company needs to have the scale to service those national clients while supporting its own employees. “Growth is important to us, not only because it can help us better serve our clients, but also because it supports our ownership,” he says. “As long as we keep growing, we will remain employee-owned and independent. That’s our goal, and that ownership structure allows us to support the culture and values we’ve already established.”


FOUNDATIONS Brown & Riding was founded in California in 1980

GEOGRAPHIC REACH There are currently 17 B&R offices across the United States

INDUSTRY STATUS B&R is one of the top 10 wholesale brokerages in the US, based on premium

OWNERSHIP B&R employees own 100% of the company

QUALITY ASSURANCE B&R was the first wholesale broker in the US to achieve and maintain ISO 9001 certification for overall quality management

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If they can do it, we can place it.

Every risk starts with a big, bold idea. And at RPS, we believe that every risk deserves the most secure placement. That’s why we never say no when it comes to finding trusted markets for unprecedented business ventures. Let’s talk about what’s new, what’s next, and what’s possible.

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27/09/2019 4:20:31 AM



YOUNG GUNS 2019 These 72 rising stars represent the fresh new face of America’s insurance industry

CONSTANT CHANGE. Ample opportunity for growth and education. Helping people. Rich relationships. These aren’t descriptions instantly attributed to the insurance industry, but they should be, says Berri Willis, managing director at Burns & Wilcox. They’re all things that attracted her to the industry when she was a recent college graduate, and they’re what have kept her in it for more than 11 years. “I fell in love with insurance within the first year,” Willis says. “I get bored easily, and it’s important to me to be in a career where I can be in front of people, talking to people, helping people, traveling and feeling like I’m doing something important. This industry can give you all of those aspects.” Willis is one of the 72 young insurance professionals in this year’s crop of Young Guns. All 35 years old or younger and all making major waves in their respective niches of the insurance world, this year’s Young Guns represent the next generation of leaders in an


industry that requires nimbleness, curiosity and an eye for innovation. As chief operating officer at AmWINS Transportation Underwriters and president of the Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association’s U40 group, Liam Hutelmyer is keenly aware of the challenges and opportunities present within the insurance industry. With a mission to help its members grow via networking, education, leadership training and community service, U40 is a key change-maker in today’s insurance industry. Hutelmyer describes the group as being “more malleable [than the industry as a whole] to do things that are necessary to help move the industry forward,” such as drive more widespread diversity and inclusion efforts. The next generation can also help the industry advance on an individual level, Hutelmyer says, by asking questions of veteran employees, being engaged and open to learning, and seeking out the ‘why’ behind the job – all measures supported by fellow

Young Gun Karin Venegas, executive vice president at Higginbotham. “I let mentees know that gaining knowledge as quickly as possible is what will set you apart,” Venegas says. “Knowledge is key in our very consumer-driven world, where we’re constantly left with the thought, ‘I can get this better somewhere else.’ We have an opportunity to be the best asset for our clients, and it all boils down to who’s the smartest and who delivers service best.” As more universities begin to offer degrees in risk management and groups like U40 continue to recruit and educate the next generation of insurance professionals, Kate Wright, regional practice group leader for Burns & Wilcox, says there’s one more thing that’s important to keep in mind when talking about the industry. “This career is what you make of it; you are driving the ship in what you want to be known for,” she says. “If you’re determined to succeed and driven and constantly learning, the opportunities are limitless.”

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Robert Balogh

AmWINS Brokerage of the Midwest


Matthew Bagley

Crum & Forster


Justin Beidleman

Arbor Insurance Group


Megan Bennett



Jessica Boswell



Caroline Calder

Hub International Northeast


Thomas J. Campisi Marsh


Crystal Cathcart



William Cea

Brown & Riding


Rebecca Chambers Travelers Insurance


Lael Chappell



Jonathan Charak

Zurich North America


Trent Colan

RLI Insurance Company





Angel Fuentes



Dominic Giancola

Custom Insurance Agency


Nicola Golder

AmWINS Access


Lindsay Grimes


Luke Hall Kylee Hawley



Claire Muselman

Continental Western Group


Randy Myers

Great American Insurance Group



Blake Parrish



THB Group


Lauren Pratscher





Patrick Richmond

RT Specialty


Eric Richter

Virtus Underwriting Group


Bo Shaw

Insurance Office of America


& McLennan Sydney K. Hedberg Marsh Companies


Jim Higgins


All Risks Ltd.


Randall Hollomon Marsh Wortham


Caren Huminski

AHT Insurance


Yang Song

ReSource Pro


TJ Hutchings



Daniel Souza

Beach & Associates


Liam J. Hutelmyer

AmWINS Transportation Underwriters


Chapin Speidel

AssuredPartners Colorado


Julian Keogh

USI Insurance Services


Bryant Steele

Burns & Wilcox


EPIC Insurance Brokers & Consultants

39 Russ Stein

Risk Placement Services


Chris Sullivan

Powers Insurance & Risk Management


Laura Sutter

RLI Insurance Company


Loc Tang

Nationwide E&S/ Specialty


Raghav Tanna



Kelly Connelly

All Risks Ltd.


Kamran Khaliq

Patrick Costello

Evolve MGA


Marek Krowka

Arch Insurance Group


Jonathan Crisol



Amanda Lania

Beecher Carlson


Leo Daley

Allied World


Spike Lipkin

Newfront Insurance


Michael Davis

Brown & Riding


Brooke Lugonjic



Landyn Dooley

Risk Placement Services


Joel Dunham

Ovation Insurance


Krae Dutoit

Gary Thompson Agency


Miles Eibe

Crawford & Company


Zachary Elman

Hub International Northeast

Jack Falvey Samantha Fritch

Insurance Brokers Thompson Mackey EPIC & Consultants


James Martinez



Melissa Tomita



Sara Masaeli

Brown & Riding


Logan True

True & Associates


Kaitlin Maw

Aon Risk Solutions


Karin Venegas




Kevin McDowell

Arch Insurance Group


Eric Weiser



Falvey Insurance Group


Alex Mendelson

CNA Insurance


Berri Willis

Burns & Wilcox


Worldwide Facilities


Lindsay Moore

Worldwide Facilities


Kate Wright

Burns & Wilcox


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YOUNG GUNS 2019 LEO DALEY Assistant vice president, public D&O division ALLIED WORLD Age: 28

Leo Daley began his insurance career as an intern at Allied World. The Allied team was so impressed with Daley that, immediately after he graduated from Trinity College in 2014, he was hired to work in the company’s New York office as an underwriter within its US public D&O team. In 2015, Daley took over the underwriting and management of Allied World’s Canadian public company D&O book of business. Under his guidance, the book’s GWP saw a compound annual growth rate of 90%. Building upon his success in Canada, Daley relocated to Boston earlier this year to manage Allied World’s public company D&O book of business in New England. Outside of Allied World, Daley is a mentor with the nonprofit Streetwise Partners, which pairs business professionals with mentees who are unemployed or underemployed to provide them with the skills, resources and networks necessary to secure and maintain employment.


CAREN HUMINSKI Practice leader, international aid and development organizations AHT INSURANCE Age: 34


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As the leader of AHT’s international aid and development organizations [IADO] practice and a senior account executive for the company’s nonprofit practice division, Caren Huminski has made a significant impact during her five years at AHT. Overseeing a team of 10, Huminski has grown the IADO practice by 10% year over year since 2017. She is also active in strategic planning and design for US and international insurance programs, developing carrier and partner relationships, negotiating policy placements, reviewing and analyzing policy language, designing and implementing risk management initiatives, reviewing claims, and helping to shape loss-control services. Huminski also takes the time to mentor junior staff members, working with them to develop carrier relationships and drive their interest in the profession. A member of IBA’s Elite Women list in 2018, Huminski continues to provide strong, effective solutions that allow her clients to focus on what matters most.

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Since joining AssuredPartners earlier this year, Eric Weiser has led his team in identifying acquisition targets and building a stable of young producers. Weiser currently has one producer on his team who has generated more than $100,000 worth of revenue so far in 2019 and is mentoring two others. He has also been able to grow his personal book of business to more than $2.2 million, leading his region in new business sales for 2019. Weiser is constantly looking for ways to improve professionally and has worked diligently to revamp his team’s handling of the needs and expectations of middlemarket clients. Additionally, his recruitment of top talent has allowed his sales force to concentrate on growing the top line without disrupting current clients’ experiences. Selected as one of IBA’s Top Producers earlier this year, Weiser is a member of Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a global nonprofit whose mission is to “engage leading entrepreneurs to learn and grow.”

Like working with a Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association member to find a custom solution to a nonstandard risk. WSIA members will help you craft cost-effective, innovative solutions for your specialty and nonstandard risks. Combining the strength


of the former AAMGA

Senior vice president and Southeast property placement leader

and NAPSLO organiza-


tions, WSIA members

Age: 34

are your source for

In her role as senior vice president and the leader of Marsh’s Southeast property placement hub, Lindsay Grimes oversees a 13-person broking team responsible for more than 300 insurance placements worth over $750 million in premium. She specializes in developing, designing and implementing complex property catastrophe insurance programs for her clients, and her market knowledge and client service skills have made her a sought-after property resource in Marsh’s global property practice. In 2016, Grimes helped to establish and now leads the property team for Marsh’s restaurant center of excellence. She also personally oversees a $6 million-plus book of business composed of some of the best-known brands in the manufacturing, hospitality, retail, public entity and multifamily sectors.


expert solutions.

find WSIA members at find WSIA members at

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Part of the Arbor team since 2010, Justin Beidleman serves the insurance needs of clients in a variety of regional industries, including contractors and constructionrelated companies, commercial real estate and restaurants. Recognized as an IBA Top Producer in 2015 and named to IBA’s Hot 100 list in 2016, Beidleman consistently earns business from large accounts through his use of member-owned group captive alternatives. He wrote nearly $1.7 million in premiums and close to $200,000 in revenue in 2018. He also helped establish a team dedicated to reviewing Arbor’s marketing approach and helping it deliver on its mission to provide tailored solutions and cost-effective, competitively priced insurance products.



Financial business director

Vice president and account executive



Age: 35

Age: 31

Melissa Tomita has made significant contributions to Nationwide’s actuarial reserving team. She has been critical in the continued training of the reserving team, serving as the department project lead for the internal trend system and leading the compilation of statements of actuarial opinion. In addition to her day-to-day responsibilities, Tomita consistently provides senior leadership to help the team make informed decisions. She has led a cross-divisional team tasked with recommending an action plan to senior leaders to address adverse results from a program, which ultimately led management to cancel the program. She has also educated distribution partners on the company’s viewpoint around profitability to better align them with organizational goals and enhance the partnership. Earlier this year, Tomita was elected to the board of directors for the Casualty Actuarial Society.

Katlin Maw joined Aon in 2011 as an account specialist in Dallas, where she honed her risk and insurance acumen and built strong client stewardship skills. She relocated to San Francisco in 2015 and took the lead on risk advisory engagements for fast-growth digital firms in Northern California. Based on her ability to manage complex situations and achieve outstanding results for clients, Maw was promoted to assistant vice president and account executive in 2016; in 2018, she was named manager of a 16-person account specialist team. Thanks to her high performance outcomes and eagerness to lead new client advisory engagements, Maw was promoted to vice president earlier this year. Outside of the office, Maw works with the dog rescue organization Muttville, whose mission is to change the way the world thinks about and treats older dogs and to create better lives for them.

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KELLY CONNELLY Underwriter, national specialty programs ALL RISKS LTD. Age: 29

Since joining the All Risks team in 2013, Kelly Connelly has received multiple accolades for her dedication and commitment to becoming an expert in pest control. Her perseverance was especially evident in 2018 when, despite a challenging market, Connelly successfully grew All Risks’ pest control insurance program by 25%. Retail agents routinely seek her expertise, praising her understanding of the pest control industry and her ability to create comprehensive insurance policies that meet the needs of their policyholders.


Kevin McDowell came to Arch in 2012 as an executive underwriter and quickly worked his way up through the ranks. At age 30, he was appointed manager of the Philadelphia regional branch’s surety department, making him Arch’s youngest branch manager. Today, McDowell is a vice president and regional vice president of the mid-Atlantic region, charged with overseeing overall portfolio management, agency relations and new business generation. McDowell has been a key mentor to young underwriters at Arch and, in 2016, was selected to participate in the company’s leadership development program. He holds an Associate in Fidelity and Surety Bonding designation and is actively involved in various construction and surety associations, including the Surety Association of America, the Construction Financial Management Association and Associated Builders and Contractors.

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BRYANT STEELE Associate vice president and managing director BURNS & WILCOX Age: 35

MICHAEL DAVIS Vice president and broker BROWN & RIDING Age: 33


As an associate vice president and managing director, Bryant Steele oversees Burns & Wilcox’s Chicago, Milwaukee and Minneapolis locations and leads around 50 associates. Throughout his 13-plus years in the insurance industry, Steele has developed a sterling reputation in the commercial property field and is known for successfully developing and implementing product programs. His innovation and dedication to growth have led the Chicago office to almost 300% growth over the past five years, including a 50% year-over-year increase and a low loss ratio. With a firm belief that effective client service is rooted in trusted relationships, Steele approaches projects by ensuring all parties are on the same page in order to deliver effective results from start to finish. His leadership skills helped Steele secure a spot in the Kaufman Advanced Management Program and Kaufman International Leadership Training at Burns & Wilcox, both of which helped to put him on the path to his current position.

Rising from a temporary employee in Brown & Riding’s MGA department in 2008 to vice president by 2017, Michael Davis has proven himself a key player in B&R’s construction practice group. He has extensive experience in complex builder’s risk program design and placement, and specializes in contractor’s equipment, real estate, earthquake, flood and named windstorm. Since 2017, Davis has achieved impressive revenue growth; as of June 2019, he was the fifth highest-producing property broker at B&R and is among the top five new business producers at the company. In conjunction with his expertise in the construction space, Davis works predominantly with real estate developerowners to create and manage shared and layered property-driven programs. “Always keeping the interest of the insured at the forefront, followed by the markets and associated parties, is truly the recipe for developing a great program,” he says.

LAEL CHAPPELL Broker engagement lead ATTUNE Age: 35

Lael Chappell joined Attune in January 2019 with more than a decade of broker and carrier experience. Responsible for identifying partnership opportunities and coordinating distribution with large retail and wholesale brokers nationwide, Chappell is also currently leading strategy development and execution for an upcoming product launch. Previously, as an underwriter at Zurich, Chappell was the youngest person to ever receive a KAMP Award, which is given to team members who demonstrate the leadership qualities, spirit and dedication of the Zurich North America colleagues who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. Chappell has been active in diversity and inclusion initiatives throughout his career, including serving as the president of the National African American Insurance Association’s New York Tri-State chapter, leading the development of Willis Towers Watson’s Minority Professionals Directory, serving as chairman emeritus of the Wall Street Alphas Charitable Foundation and establishing the New York chapter of the Emerging 100 for One Hundred Black Men of New York.

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27/09/2019 4:56:46 AM

KRAE DUTOIT President and shareholder GARY THOMPSON AGENCY Age: 35

In his 12 years with Gary Thompson Agency, particularly his two years as president, Krae Dutoit has helped lead annual revenue growth of nearly 75%. Under Dutoit’s leadership, the agency has added six new locations, more than 30 new employees and five new carriers. It has also experienced a 100% increase with its largest carrier, restructured its management group to allow for long-term perpetuation and increased shareholder returns by nearly 30% over the past two years. In 2015, Dutoit led the opening of the agency’s employee benefits division, which, to date, has averaged growth of more than 25% every year and is the agency’s fastest-growing division. Dutoit won the agency’s New Sales Leader Award every year from 2011 to 2017. In 2016-17, he served as president of the Independent Insurance Agents of Nebraska, the youngest in its history.

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27/09/2019 4:56:51 AM



JONATHAN CRISOL Vice president and head of operations and business planning, international personal lines CHUBB Age: 33

Before transitioning into his current role earlier this year, Jonathan Crisol managed Chubb’s agency distribution

NICOLA GOLDER Binding authority property practice leader AMWINS ACCESS Age: 34


channel across countries in Latin America, Asia and Europe. Using tactics such as incentive campaigns, value-added services and key metric management tracking, Crisol was successful in making it one of the fastest-growing segments within Chubb’s overseas general international division over the last five years. Today, as head of operations and business planning for international personal lines, Crisol focuses on developing and executing strategies to manage Chubb’s entire international personal lines portfolio, which spans 54 countries. Crisol knew he wanted to be in the insurance business from a young age, having grown up in the Philippines, where both of his parents worked as corporate executives. He attended the School of Risk Management, Insurance and Actuarial Science at St. John’s University in Minnesota and remains a staunch ambassador of the industry, sharing his experience with everyone he meets, including the people he leads on tours of the Freedom Trail in Boston.

Trained at Lloyd’s, Nicola Golder was named Young Broker of the Year in London in 2012, an honor given to individuals who make a significant contribution to the industry at a young age. After serving as a delegated authority broker for AmWINS’ London broker, THB International, Golder moved to the US in early 2019. She is now based at AmWINS’ headquarters in Charlotte, where she serves as binding authority property practice leader for AmWINS Access, a national MGA writing more than $1 billion in annual premiums. As property practice leader, Golder draws on her expertise in property reinsurance, policy forms, rating and modeling as she works with capital providers to build property capacity for AmWINS Access binding authorities. Not only does she play an instrumental role in the development of the business, but she’s also a key contributor to the company’s diversity and inclusion efforts.

BERRI WILLIS Managing director BURNS & WILCOX Age: 35

Leveraging more than a decade of industry experience, Berri Willis oversees the Burns & Wilcox offices in Morehead City and Wilmington, North Carolina, and co-manages the Charlotte office. She currently oversees five product divisions, manages business plans, and negotiates exposures and contracts alongside brokers in London. She has created a cohesive work environment by recruiting and retaining talent and developing successful products, and has built a strong clientele over the years. Willis played an integral role in the recent restructuring of the North Carolina offices, leading the team to a nearly 30% increase in professional liability business. Under her leadership, all three North Carolina offices produced $67 million in premium in 2018, despite major business interruptions following Hurricane Florence. Willis’ other notable accomplishments include becoming a Lloyd’s coverholder, creating a training program for new Burns & Wilcox hires and playing an integral role in the development of the company’s national flood center of excellence.

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27/09/2019 4:56:57 AM

THANK YOU TO THOSE WHO LEAD THE WAY RLI proudly congratulates the IBA Young Guns 2019, including our own Trent Colan and Laura Sutter.

RLI is a specialty insurer ser ving niche property, casualty and surety markets.

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27/09/2019 4:56:58 AM



ALEX MENDELSON Assistant vice president, financial institutions CNA INSURANCE Age: 32

As assistant vice president of financial institutions for CNA’s Eastern territory, Alex Mendelson is responsible for the portfolio growth and profitability of the New York City branch. He manages and develops a team of underwriters focused on all specialty lines of business for depository institutions and insurance companies. Mendelson and his team regularly meet with risk managers and C-suite executives from some of the largest financial institutions in the world. Prior to joining CNA in 2014, Mendelson worked in the financial institutions division at Zurich, underwriting a wide range of specialty business. He began his career at AIG, where, after completing two summer internship programs, he joined the professional lines underwriting team. Mendelson was recognized as an Emerging Leader in 2018 by the Insurance Brokerage Association of New York and has participated in leadership forums with CNA colleagues from around the globe.




Managing director

Vice president



Age: 32

Age: 27

Soon after joining Higginbotham as a customer service representative in the employee benefits department, TJ Hutchings set a goal to become a managing director within five years, which he accomplished by the end of 2018. Hutchings has maintained a 95%-plus customer retention rate by tirelessly searching for savings solutions for his clients and fostering community relationships to bring them closer to resources that can improve their situation. Outside of Higginbotham, Hutchings sits on the boards of Gill Children’s Services, Habitat for Humanity of Tarrant County and The Parenting Center.

Leading the construction insurance team at AssuredPartners Colorado, Chapin Speidel has been responsible for bringing on 15 new construction companies since July 2018 for a total of close to $75,000 in new business revenue. Speidel advises CEOs, CFOs and HR professionals on uncovering cost savings, navigating the complex world of commercial insurance, and identifying and creating specific insurance solutions that are unique to each business. He is on the Future Leaders Forum for the Associated General Contractors of Colorado and is a member of the Rocky Mountain Surety Association and CoreNet Global’s Denver chapter.

DANIEL SOUZA Assistant vice president BEACH & ASSOCIATES Age: 26

Promoted to assistant vice president at age 26, Daniel Souza is the youngest AVP in the history of Beach & Associates. He works directly with senior vice presidents in the New York office to help maintain the company’s high-level clients and has made several presentations regarding the acquisition of new clients. Souza also assists in producing presentations, submissions, and documentation; interpreting analytical results to evaluate and compare different reinsurance prices and strategies; and developing a detailed understanding of clients’ businesses. He is a member of the US Reinsurance Under 40s Group, a nonprofit organization that provides educational, networking and charitable opportunities for members of the reinsurance industry within the US.

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27/09/2019 4:57:04 AM

JACK FALVEY Vice president, group operations FALVEY INSURANCE GROUP Age: 28

As the vice president of group operations at Falvey Insurance Group [FIG], Jack Falvey promotes change and innovation while structuring risk vehicles in new ways. As the leader of FIG’s software development team, he steers the division to push out industry-leading technology and platforms. Falvey and his team ensure that all functions are working properly so that the company’s approximately $80 million in GWP can be properly underwritten with claims paid. Additionally, Falvey liaises with the 18 syndicates FIG works with at Lloyd’s, overseeing report generation and presentations to provide an in-depth view of how FIG and the markets in which it operates are faring. One of Falvey’s most significant accomplishments has been the creation of a $175 million primary vessel pollution facility for the MGA Safe Harbor Pollution Insurance – the largest pollution facility in US history. Falvey led the negotiations, structuring, contract reviews and final sign-offs for the deal, which was a game-changing event for a market that had been dominated by one company for more than 40 years.

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27/09/2019 4:57:13 AM



AMANDA LANIA Assistant vice president, global energy practice BEECHER CARLSON Age: 31

An accomplished member of Beecher Carlson’s global energy practice, Amanda Lania is responsible for placing property & casualty insurance for construction and operational energy projects, as well as marketing and servicing the company’s national environmental portfolio. Lania consistently demonstrates her vast industry knowledge and expertise by structuring and implementing various insurance programs and is consistently recognized for her ability to help clients navigate challenging situations to achieve the best results. Recently, Lania worked with a new waste-to-energy client to restructure their placement in order to achieve rate savings of 40%. Continually exceeding expectations, Lania was promoted from an assistant account manager to account manager in 2015 and then to assistant vice president earlier this year.

LINDSAY MOORE Assistant vice president WORLDWIDE FACILITIES Age: 27

Lindsay Moore has been with Worldwide Facilities since 2014 and has become an expert in placing product recall, environmental and constructionrelated risks. An enthusiastic supporter of the risk management and insurance industry, Moore is a member of the Los Angeles chapter of Women of Wholesale and a member of the Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association’s legislative committee. She also serves on the advisory board for the University of Southern California’s Risk Management Program, participating in on-campus recruiting events and assisting in mentorship and internship programs to promote careers and opportunities in the risk management and insurance industry.



After five years in the investment consulting industry, Thompson Mackey moved to Atlanta to work as a risk management consultant for EPIC, applying portfolio construction theory and practice to insurance program design for corporate clients. Since joining EPIC, Mackey has assisted in the research, design, negotiation and implementation of commercial insurance programs for a top-three global private equity firm, a Fortune 500 manufacturing firm and hundreds of private companies. Mackey serves as a cyber resource for EPIC’s Atlanta office, assisting the production team with the negotiation and placement of cyber insurance for clients around the country. He is also highly active in the national insurance community. He is the founder of Young Risk Professionals of Georgia, a nonprofit that works to develop young professionals in the insurance industry. Mackey has also been invited to the elite Andrew Beazley Broker Academy at Lloyd’s of London and was selected for the 2019 class of Carnegie Mellon’s Chubb Cyber COPE Insurance Certification program.

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27/09/2019 4:57:15 AM

PATRICK RICHMOND Senior vice president RT SPECIALTY Age: 32

As a senior vice president for RT Specialty, Patrick Richmond is responsible for co-leading and driving production for a Chicagobased professional and executive liability team that includes 24 brokers and $250 million worth of written premium. The team specializes in commercial management liability; technology E&O; media liability; cyber liability; lawyers’, medical, and architects & engineers’ professional liability; and professional and management liability for financial institutions. Since its formation in 2013, Richmond’s team has generated explosive growth every year and is currently up over 50% for 2019. A true client advocate, Richmond provides value for his retail clients through his product knowledge and market relationships. During his tenure at RT Specialty, he has been recognized as Professional Liability Broker of the Year two separate times, as well as a Broker of the Year, and has also received a President’s Award.

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27/09/2019 4:57:20 AM




DOMINIC GIANCOLA Agency executive

Regional practice group leader, personal insurance



Age: 28

Age: 32

After starting her career in healthcare finance, Kate Wright was introduced to insurance while earning a life and health license to help clients find the right health insurance. Within a year, she had joined the Burns & Wilcox team, where she shifted her concentration to property & casualty insurance and underwriting high-risk personal insurance. She developed a knack for finding solutions for risks that other carriers are unable to offer, which led to her promotion to regional practice group leader last year. In this role, Wright is responsible for developing underwriters at Burns & Wilcox’s Indianapolis office, managing personal insurance product offerings for seven Midwest locations, building and maintaining retail broker and agent relationships, and assisting with marketing and sales strategies. Wright’s results-oriented mindset has led to significant growth in the Indianapolis office’s personal insurance capabilities, as well as positive year-over-year growth in both retention and new business.


Dominic Giancola joined Custom Insurance Agency in 2009 straight after graduating from high school. After handling personal and business customers as a licensed producer for three years, he was promoted to sales

manager and eventually to partner in 2014. Giancola has helped expand the firm at a 20% consecutive growth rate over the past five years by developing strategic partnerships with supporting industries, developing producers, acquiring smaller competitor firms and implementing technology to streamline processes throughout the company. Recently, Giancola and his team launched a benefits insurance division and are actively looking to expand into other states.

MILES EIBE Business operations and analytics manager CRAWFORD & COMPANY Age: 28

In less than five years with Crawford & Company, Miles Eibe has made a name for himself among clients and the company’s executive leadership. He developed an algorithmbased keystone report that assists management and administrators in assigning claims to adjusters and created an interactive dashboard that gives upper management a direct view into their claim inventories, staffing and key performance indicators – a tool that has become the standard for performance management. He also set up Crawford’s robotic process automation team and assembled its current data and analytics team to provide consistent, productive and agile responses to both internal and external clients. Earlier this year, Eibe was nominated to Crawford’s Emerging Leaders program, an honor reserved for 20 global leaders who have shown great potential through their work contributions, skills and leadership abilities.

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As a VP at EPIC, Kamran Khaliq leads the charge in developing and executing innovative risk management solutions for corporations across a wide variety of industries. Khaliq was the youngest producer at Integro Insurance Brokers prior to its acquisition by EPIC. There, as a member of the company’s private equity and M&A practice, he was tasked with liaising with a team of transactional and industry specialists to guide clients through various deal landscapes. Passionate about using commercial insurance to help his clients exceed their business goals, Khaliq’s areas of focus include insurance due diligence, transactional risk product placement, portfolio insurance program optimization and fund management. He also serves as an insurance advisor to tech startups. Khaliq was named an Emerging Leader of the Year by the Insurance Brokers Association of New York in 2017 and was a featured speaker on insurance innovation at Rutgers University in 2018 and 2019.



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27/09/2019 4:57:36 AM



MATTHEW BAGLEY Assistant vice president CRUM & FORSTER Age: 33



Area vice president



Age: 30

Age: 32

As an area vice president for Gallagher, James Martinez works with clients ranging from chemical and real estate firms to healthcare and nonprofit organizations, helping them control their insurance costs and protect their assets. Martinez works with organizations to accomplish these goals by using Gallagher’s CORE360 approach, which considers all cost drivers of a risk management program. By helping clients fully understand their actual and potential costs, Martinez provides them with actionable advice and supports them in minimizing their total cost of risk. His successes include working with a self-insured employer to cut its workers’ compensation costs by more than $6 million.


Patrick Costello has cultivated Evolve MGA from the ground up. Founded in 2015 by Costello and his brother, Michael, Evolve specializes in cyber insurance and has grown to around 30 employees and 10 offices around the US. Prior to founding Evolve, Costello interned at Lloyd’s of London, trained with ACE Group, obtained his CPCU designation and spent multiple years underwriting professional liability risks. His interests shifted toward the rapidly expanding cyber insurance market; at Evolve, he works with thousands of agencies and steers his team to lead the industry when it comes to cyber coverage, efficiency, simplified marketing and education. In 2019, Evolve was named Cyber Newcomer of the Year by Advisen.

A relative newcomer to the insurance industry, Matthew Bagley has quickly established himself as a key player at Crum & Forster. Bagley came to the company from a job in geothermal engineering and, in less than five years, has progressed from an occupational accident underwriter to assistant vice president of the occupational accident division. He runs a team that consists of underwriting, accounting and operations branches and has helped to grow a profitable book of business and expand the company’s appetite into new segments of business, including the gig economy. Recently, Bagley helped develop Crum & Forster’s new company slogan, which will be used for the next five years and is centered around the “greatness of togetherness” – a reflection of Bagley’s dedication to creating a team-friendly environment where “everyone helps everyone so each person can develop into the best version of themselves.”

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27/09/2019 4:57:28 AM

CRYSTAL CATHCART Product specialist, ISO MarketStance solutions VERISK Age: 35

As a product specialist for ISO MarketStance, Crystal Cathcart works closely with marketing, underwriting, product and strategy executives at commercial lines property & casualty carriers across the country. Cathcart assists clients with meeting company goals for strategically targeted growth in key markets, identifying under-penetrated markets, expanding into new classes and geographies, distribution management, and agency partner growth. She has a deep understanding of the diverse needs of different size carriers, which she uses to empower her customers to succeed in a constantly evolving commercial market. Cathcart was recognized by the Professional Insurance Agents of Connecticut as Community Service Person of the Year in 2018, National Young Insurance Professional of the Year in 2017 and Connecticut Young Insurance Professional of the Year in 2016. She is on the board of directors for the Connecticut Young Insurance Professionals and previously served as the chair of the Young Professionals of Eastern Connecticut.

BLAKE PARRISH Senior vice president MARSH Age: 33

Identified as a top talent while taking part in Marsh’s risk analyst graduate training program, Blake Parrish was quickly promoted to assistant vice president in 2011, vice president in 2013 and senior vice president in 2017. Throughout this time, Parrish helped grow the Los Angeles environmental practice into one of Marsh’s largest specialty units on the West Coast. He then transitioned to the insurer’s global casualty team, where he worked on complex casualty accounts in the Los Angeles area and negotiated and brokered several sizable construction projects for large contractors, architects and engineering firms. In 2012, Parrish became a full-time producer; by 2017, he had landed among Marsh’s top 100 producers. In 2018, Parrish continued to expand his leadership at Marsh by helping to establish the company’s Los Angeles construction center of excellence.

TRENT COLAN Director of underwriting, surety RLI INSURANCE COMPANY Age: 33

Since joining RLI as an intern in 2011, Trent Colan has quickly assumed roles of increasing responsibility. He initiated and led the expansion of RLI’s Northeast US presence for an existing surety bond product, and his ability to consistently build strong relationships and create win-win partnerships with colleagues, business partners and customers led to his rise to director of underwriting in RLI’s surety product group. Colan partners closely with RLI’s brokers and insureds, helping them navigate decision-making in the face of a rapidly changing industry, and he has established trust-based partnerships with regulatory committees in Texas and Pennsylvania to advocate for responsible and safe regulations and help brokers and insureds make smart decisions for their businesses.

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27/09/2019 4:57:33 AM


YOUNG GUNS 2019 SYDNEY K. HEDBERG Associate director, MMC Advantage MARSH & MCLENNAN COMPANIES Age: 26

KARIN VENEGAS Executive vice president HIGGINBOTHAM Age: 32

Karin Venegas is one of the youngest executive vice presidents at Higginbotham and continues to rapidly grow the company’s property & casualty book. Venegas began her insurance career in 2013 when she joined Higginbotham’s production team as an associate. After just one year of production, she was named Top Producer for Revenue Growth – Percentage out of approximately 200 producers. In 2018, she was promoted to executive vice president and earned a spot on IBA’s Hot 100 list, a feat she repeated in 2019. Venegas far exceeds her growth goals every year, and 2019 is no different – by the end of the second quarter, she had already met 100% of her revenue goal. She diligently educates her clients on ways to manage their risk and build an insurance program that complements their risk threshold, an approach that requires her to stay constantly up-to-date on industry changes and new products. Venegas is also part of Higginbotham’s recruitment team and participates in the Higg U training program, mentoring new producers as they begin their careers.


Sydney Hedberg has no shortage of titles. In addition to being the associate director of the MMC Advantage team and enabling growth across Marsh & McLennan Companies’ four operating units – Marsh, Mercer, Guy Carpenter and Oliver Wyman – Hedberg is also team lead of the energy initiative for the US, geography lead for the South Central partnership, and author of Barneys, Bergdorfs & Bill$: A Girlfriends’ Guide to Finance. Internally, Hedberg works to connect colleagues across the firm, seeking to leverage opportunities for cross-operating company services and products for her clients. For her work with large catastrophic issues, Hedberg uses OpCo expertise and seeks out strategic partnerships with clients to craft solutions, while simultaneously monitoring governmental efforts to monetize and solve for these risks. Outside of MMC, Hedberg is an active member of the Ole Miss Alumni Association and volunteers as an advisor for the collegiate society of Women in Business, where she has spoken about her book and the importance of financial literacy for female and young professionals.


Since joining Hub’s Northeast region just over a year ago, Caroline (Callie) Calder has generated more than $775,000 in personal lines premium. Calder specializes in arranging comprehensive insurance and risk management programs for high-net-worth clients and works closely with Hub’s senior management and dedicated family office practice. Although still new to the insurance industry, Calder has become a valuable member of Hub’s team of private client advisors, managing a book of business consisting of approximately 900 accounts, generating a consistent influx of new business and demonstrating her dedication to professional growth by participating in numerous education opportunities. “Within the short period of time that Callie has been with our region, she has impressed us with her creativity, tenacity and positive attitude, all of which are required to succeed in this market,” says Brad Taylor, president of personal insurance at Hub International Northeast. “Although new to the high-net-worth insurance sector, Callie’s industry knowledge has grown exponentially, which speaks volumes of her future potential.”

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Specializing in risk management for the real estate and hospitality industries and condominium and homeowners associations, Bo Shaw consistently meets Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac requirements by staying within investors’ insurance budgets, providing detailed knowledge to clients and growing real estate firms’ insurance policies with competitive rates. Shaw joined Insurance Office of America [IOA] in 2016 and, within the last three years, has helped the company acquire nearly 50 separate multifamily apartment locations across the US. Between January 2018 and July 2019, Shaw placed roughly $400 million in new business total insurable values for property valuations. He also assisted a general contractor in collecting $1 million in outstanding accounts receivable and placed coverage for multiple condominium associations with building values in excess of $75 million. Shaw has received IOA’s Georgia Region Rising Star Award and has been recognized as Mentee of the Year. He also recently achieved the Professional Workers’ Compensation Advisor designation.

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KYLEE HAWLEY Vice president and US leader, pursuit and creative AON Age: 35

Kylee Hawley began her career focused on the benefits side of insurance and has since gained an in-depth understanding of the entire Aon organization, including commercial risk. She currently leads the US pursuit and creative team, guiding project managers, writers and designers to partner with account teams and producers to win new business and retain clients. Over the past six years, Hawley’s team has redefined the pursuit process by aligning regional resources and proposing best practices that have been implemented globally. That has resulted in capacity increases of 10% year over year, along with improved win rates and annual revenue growth of at least $10 million over the prior year. Outside of Aon, Hawley serves on several nonprofit boards and volunteers with organizations such as Boys & Girls Aid, for which she recently organized a drive to collect backpacks for children in foster care.

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MEGAN BENNETT Vice president, middle-market commercial P&C ICAT Age: 31

Megan Bennett joined ICAT at the beginning of 2018 as a product manager for the middle-market business unit [MMBU]. From day one, she provided guidance, education and quick turnarounds, all of which helped the underwriters excel. Within 11 months, Bennett was promoted to director of the MMBU and was recently promoted to vice president, charged with leading the MMBU on product, pricing and market conditions to support production. She is also responsible for the unit’s overall underwriting results. One of the many reasons for Bennett’s promotion was her decision to fully integrate herself into the MMBU during a first-quarter shortfall to support a production turnaround. As a result, the unit’s numbers exceeded a mid-year reforecast and landed within 5% of the original budget. Bennett’s expertise in all areas of product management has allowed her to excel in her role. She recently received the CEO Award, which recognizes individuals at ICAT who have improved the business financially or operationally and delivered outstanding results.




Senior vice president of healthcare professional liability

Assistant vice president and senior business systems analyst



Age: 33

Age: 34

In Marek Krowka’s decade at Arch Insurance Group, his career has spanned multiple disciplines, including D&O for private equity and asset managers, running Arch’s D&O and transactional risk products internationally, and, most recently, leading the US healthcare professional liability practice. Krowka also founded Arch’s international M&A/transactional risk practice, building profitable businesses, launching new initiatives and leading teams of underwriters. As senior vice president and business unit head for healthcare professional liability, he is implementing operational improvements, streamlining processes, refining underwriting appetite and setting strategy for future growth and profitability.

When Sara Masaeli joined Brown & Riding in 2014 as a practice group coordinator, she had no insurance background. She quickly became well versed in the industry and helped lead B&R through an agency management transition by overseeing data migration and working with the Indiabased vendor to make sure necessary changes and bug fixes were implemented. The skills she displayed led to her being promoted to business systems analyst, then senior business systems analyst in 2018 and, shortly thereafter, to assistant vice president. An extremely hard worker who looks to identify needs and opportunities to implement technology solutions throughout the company, Masaeli continuously proposes ideas that help create heightened efficiency for B&R.


After graduating from Villanova University in 2013, Logan True landed a full-time marketing position with a construction firm, but he soon realized his passion lay in insurance. He approached his uncle, True & Associates CEO Thomas True, about a full-time job and is now a producer at the agency. During his time there, True has streamlined sales processes and workflows, built a book of business worth $4 million in premium and earned his Construction Risk Insurance Specialist designation. Outside of the office, he serves as president of the New Jersey Young Insurance Professionals, a board member of the New Jersey Subcontractors Association and a mentor with the Young Entrepreneurs Academy.

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JESSICA BOSWELL Vice president and account executive MARSH Age: 32

Jessica Boswell has worked in insurance and risk management since she was 18. She joined Marsh as an associate account executive in 2015 and was quickly promoted to account executive, then to account representative team lead. Soon after, based on her ability to manage her accounts while providing support and direction to team members to increase their progress and profitability, Boswell was promoted to manage that team. For the past year, in addition to running her $1.5 million book of business, Boswell has taken on managing the six account representatives in the Los Angeles corporate segment department and consistently works to strengthen communication and analytical skills and deepen relationships within the group. “She is passionate about motivating her team, has an incredibly positive attitude and employs every learned habit or piece of advice to fulfill her role as a leader,” says Danielle Marinello, Boswell’s direct supervisor.


LANDYN DOOLEY Underwriter/broker

Spike Lipkin built Newfront Insurance with a mission of setting a new standard for the retail insurance industry. Using advanced technology and expert service, Newfront aims to offer a fundamentally different experience for its commercial and private clients, as well as a new level of control for producers. Lipkin oversees Newfront’s more than 150 employees and 60 producers and works with them to continue transforming the industry. Prior to Newfront, Lipkin was an early employee at Opendoor. com, which he helped grow into a business currently valued at over $3 billion. Before that, he was an investor at Blackstone and part of the startup team that built Invitation Homes into the largest owner of single-family real estate in the US. At both companies, Lipkin experienced firsthand the challenges in the insurance-buying process, inspiring him to build a modern insurance brokerage designed to improve the client experience.


After graduating from the University of Georgia in 2016, Landyn Dooley joined Risk Placement Services as an underwriting assistant. She quickly learned the business and was promoted to underwriter/broker in 2017. In just three years, Dooley has become the number-one producer for her office in Roswell, Georgia. Her client-focused work ethic has enabled her to build a book that consists of business from more than 250 agencies. Her accomplishments have earned her several accolades from RPS, including the Rookie of the Year, Roswell Branch MVP and Top Growth awards. Dooley is equally active outside of the office, dedicating her time to the Parkinson’s and Cystic Fibrosis foundations. In 2018, she was able to raise more than $6,000 for the Parkinson’s Foundation, and in 2019, she rallied her friends and colleagues at RPS to raise another $5,000 for the Insure the Cure walk for cystic fibrosis.

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YOUNG GUNS 2019 WILLIAM CEA Assistant vice president and broker BROWN & RIDING Age: 27

William Cea started his insurance career as a production assistant at Brown & Riding in 2013 and has since worked his way up to broker. In 2017, Cea joined B&R’s Rainmaker Group, an internal mentorship program that recognizes and supports up-and-coming brokers. The following year, he was ranked number one in his Rainmaker production category based on overall revenue, new business revenue and client feedback. Cea has developed a niche as a transportation specialist, serving as the property lead for B&R’s transportation specialty practice area. He is also the company’s primary expert for inland marine coverages. Cea has achieved noteworthy revenue growth over the last couple of years – his year-end revenue for 2018 was more than double the previous year, and he has nearly doubled it again thus far in 2019.





Vice president, product recall

Specialist, business consulting



Age: 29

Age: 32

Robert Balogh has established himself as a go-to resource in the product recall space, going above and beyond to make sure his retail agents are fully educated on coverage. He has extensive knowledge of product recall and contamination policy forms and uses new approaches and solutions to construct deals that competitors can’t. Fully committed to this industry segment, Balogh is a founding member of the North American Crisis Management Summit advisory committee, which hosts annual product recall roundtable discussions around the US.

With an eye for all things digital, Loc Tang has been transforming Nationwide E&S/ Specialty by leveraging data and macros. In 2018, Tang developed an innovative macro solution to update a threedecade-old business process and achieve lower average handle time, 30% increased productivity and 10% higher quality. Constantly on the lookout for ways to create efficiency, Tang’s efforts have been recognized by Mark Berven, Nationwide’s president and COO of P&C. His entrepreneurial spirit and ability to put ideas into practice have saved the company hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Zachary Elman joined Hub International Northeast in 2015 as a trainee in the organization’s account executive training program. His final presentation in the program focused on possible threats from innovative new insurance companies trying to disrupt the field, and it made such an impression on senior management that Hub Northeast’s president and CEO personally requested that Elman hold an internal educational session on the topic. Since transitioning into his current role in 2017, Elman has placed more than $10 million in new business premium. Recently, he saved one of the largest janitorial and cleaning companies in New York more than $50,000 on their insurance premiums, effectively securing the account for Hub. He is currently in the process of creating a new insurance program for a $1.2 billion carve-out for a major industrial distribution company and is responsible for managing various aspects of Hub’s commercial lines opportunities, including acquiring quotes, binding coverage and servicing accounts.

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YANG SONG Operations consultant RESOURCE PRO Age: 30

Born in China, Yang Song started her insurance career working at a service center in Qingdao for ReSource Pro, a global solutions provider serving US insurance organizations. Song stood out as a high performer and, at age 25, became the youngest team leader in her department. After six years at the Qingdao service center, Song sought a US-based role within the company and joined ReSource Pro’s team of operations consultants. She collaborates directly with clients to optimize their operations; to date, she has helped more than 60 insurance organizations develop and advance their business processes, and she now leads onboarding of new clients as well. Still in her first decade in the industry, Song continues to find new ways to hone her expertise, including participating in professional development training at the Harvard Extension School.

THOMAS J. CAMPISI Senior vice president and property placement specialist MARSH Age: 35

Known throughout Marsh as a dependable colleague with a strong work ethic, Thomas J. (TJ) Campisi has been with Marsh for more than 13 years and has rapidly progressed through the ranks of its property practice. As a property broker, Campisi is dedicated to setting strategies for his clients that align expectations with achievable results. He coordinates the design, marketing and implementation of complex property programs in Marsh’s central zone, which represents more than $6 million worth of income, $100 million in premiums and $300 billion in total insurable value. Additionally, Campisi places property coverage for more than 100 US higher education institutions, representing approximately $125 billion TIV. Campisi’s expertise in this area is regularly sought by Marsh’s global network of property brokers, as well as current and prospective clients. His efforts have resulted in a high level of client retention; he also received the 2017 Marsh CEO Award, which recognizes the company’s top influencers and innovative thought leaders.


Serving in a leadership capacity since she joined RLI in 2012, Laura Sutter has continually expanded her influence, especially within RLI’s initiative to expand its robotic process automation and analytics capabilities. Promoted from actuarial analyst to actuarial director in 2014, Sutter leads the actuarial operations for E&S product lines, partnering closely with RLI underwriters to solve problems and provide advice on non-standard or complex risks. Her dedication in this area has led to the increased productivity and effectiveness of RLI’s underwriting team. In addition to her day-to-day duties, Sutter exhibits a passion for helping the industry’s emerging talent and next-generation leaders; she is actively involved in RLI’s recruiting efforts and has assumed responsibility for providing mentoring, onboarding support, training and placement to new hires. Sutter was also selected to represent RLI at the 2018 Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation Women in Insurance Conference.

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Liam Hutelmyer has been at AmWINS Transportation Underwriters for over 11 years, progressing from underwriter to VP of underwriting and operations to his current role as chief operating officer. Named AmWINS Group MVP in 2013 for his design of a transportation comparative rater, Hutelmyer has

ANGEL FUENTES Senior analyst, process management NATIONWIDE Age: 24

Angel Fuentes started his career in the Nationwide cafeteria. A natural at forging relationships and committed to his goal of becoming an insurance professional, he sought out connections that helped him progress to his current role as an analyst in accounts payable and receivable. Fuentes has been a leading player in transitioning existing training materials to a digitized interactive training environment, resulting in a 25% reduction in the time it takes to train a new associate. He has also been actively involved in other processes designed to streamline business, including developing reports for analyzing data that ensure compliance procedures are aligned with best practices. Fuentes is a graduate of an internal development program that helps future associates prepare for leadership roles and is also the co-lead of a Nationwide group called Young Professional, whose aim is to help its members – as well as anyone of any age in the workforce – relate to one another better, open avenues to share different thinking styles and provide diversity education.



continued to leverage his experience to benefit AmWINS Transportation Underwriters’ customers in the trucking and transportation industry. Hutelmyer takes his passion for underwriting far beyond his daily responsibilities, currently serving as president of the Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association’s U40 group, chair of the education committee of the MCIEF curriculum committee and a mentor to risk management students at the Brantley Risk & Insurance Center at Appalachian State University.

After getting his start in the industry in 2015 as a commercial insurance producer and underwriter, Raghav Tanna founded insurtech startup Tarmika, a commercial lines comparative rater geared toward independent insurance agents, with a mission of delivering value to the market while pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with technology. A state-of-the-art, AI-based platform, Tarmika uses API and RPA technology to allow independent agents to quote multiple carriers in a fraction of the time it typically takes. Currently, the Tarmika Bridge offers workers’ compensation and BOP rates. Tanna has spoken at several industry events, discussing innovation within the insurance industry.


Shortly after graduating from Ohio State, Joel Dunham joined Stoller Insurance Agency as a producer focused on personal lines, hospitality, and churches and ministries. Seven years later, Dunham purchased the agency, changed its name to Ovation Insurance, and immediately began adding to its brand and structure, making significant upgrades to automation, technology and agency processes.  Dunham was named Young Insurance Professional of the Year by the Professional Insurance Agents [PIA] of Indiana in 2018, and Ovation was named a 2019 Best Practices Agency by Reagan Consulting. In addition to his duties as president and owner of Ovation, Dunham serves on the boards of directors for PIA of Indiana and Young PIA of Indiana.

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27/09/2019 4:58:08 AM

RUSS STEIN Area assistant vice president RISK PLACEMENT SERVICES Age: 30

In the four years that Russ Stein has been with Risk Placement Services, he has already had a significant impact on production in the Southern California office. Two years ago, Stein took it upon himself to develop a book of business in oil & gas, learning the technical aspects of the industry, building relationships with retail agencies and identifying the leading carriers in the business. In less than two years, he has gone from zero premium written to more than $10 million. In addition to his oil & gas focus, Stein works on a complex casualty team that, under his leadership, has grown at an average of 12% year over year for the past four years. Outside of his production responsibilities, Stein is actively involved with early talent development and is currently training two individuals.


As an inside sales executive at Travelers, Rebecca Chambers exemplifies professionalism and has built a strong track record of success in internal sales and marketing. With deep knowledge of agency fundamentals and sales and marketing processes, Chambers has a history of increasing customer and agent satisfaction. She is a hands-on, motivational leader who goes out of her way to cultivate a team-oriented environment and develop staff in a way that improves morale. Chambers is known for streamlining workflow and implementing new processes and has developed a reputation for being someone who is constantly looking to tackle new challenges, build her skill set and develop a resourceful network.


Eric Richter began his insurance career in 2009 at Western Pacific Insurance, an MGA specializing in the construction and real estate industries. There, Richter successfully started and managed the marketing department while simultaneously honing his expertise in construction underwriting. In 2012, Western Pacific created Virtus Underwriting Group as a subsidiary MGA, and Richter was brought on as vice president. Under his direction, the marketing team expanded the agency’s footprint into multiple states, implemented aggressive e-marketing campaigns and created new product opportunities for both brands. Richter was named president of Virtus in 2018 and has since successfully increased the premium writings of non-contracting accounts. He has received several industry accolades throughout his career, including being named Colorado Big I Company Marketing Person of the Year in 2013 and Colorado Big I Young Insurance Professional of the Year in 2014.

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Commercial risk advisor

Director, organic growth consulting

Age: 32



Guided by agency president JD Powers as his mentor, Chris Sullivan swiftly established his areas of practice upon joining Powers Insurance & Risk Management in 2014, including food and beverage hospitality, professional and management liability, property & casualty insurance, and, most recently, the cannabis industry. Sullivan has doubled his book of business every year since his hire and was the top new business producer in the agency in 2018. This year, he helped spearhead the launch of Powers’ emerging risks division, focused on insurance risk strategies aligned with the core emerging markets of cannabis, cyber, private client, renewable energy and technology. As the agency’s leader in the cannabis division, Sullivan has established himself as a central figure in this emerging industry.

Age: 30

Within a few months of being hired as a team lead for MarshBerry’s talent acquisition services in 2016, Brooke Lugonjic was promoted to manager of that division. She oversaw a team of recruiting professionals, consulted with clients on organic growth, originated business and drove significant organizational change, updating and reshaping processes and workflow and creating standard operating procedures for the unit from scratch. At the same time, Lugonjic formalized the internship program for her team, which has led to a pipeline of qualified young professionals joining MarshBerry and gaining exposure to the insurance industry. Since joining MarshBerry, Lugonjic has seen year-over-year growth in new business revenue, was recognized as the MarshBerry Sales Rookie of the Year in 2018 and, in 2019, is on pace for a 50% increase in new business compared to her 2018 results. Her efforts have resulted in better-qualified candidates and clients, a more effective team and the placement of more than 500 insurance industry professionals for clients.


JULIAN KEOGH Senior vice president and managing consultant USI INSURANCE SERVICES Age: 34

Less than a year after joining USI Insurance Services as a senior consultant, Julian Keogh stepped into the role of team leader and has been an active regional leader for USI ever since. Keogh engages USI’s many new hires by regularly coordinating networking events with carrier partners and serving as a mentor, all of which has led to greater staff retention and recruitment. While not technically a salesperson, Keogh has brought in a significant amount of new business thanks to his ability to compellingly articulate the company’s value proposition. He is one of a two-person team heading up USI’s regional EB Innovation Lab. Two years ago, he developed and led a team to create a new process to proactively manage client renewals, leading to improved efficiency metrics and greater client satisfaction. Keogh has been recognized multiple times within USI’s Regional EB Stars Program and received the 2013 New York Cares Leadership Award.

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As an assistant vice president at Worldwide Facilities, Samantha Fritch specializes in environmental and energy risks, serves on the product development committee to come up with new programs and products, is considered a rising star on the professional development team, and works with Alaska Native Corporation businesses to place primary and excess towers. Fritch’s involvement in risk management goes far beyond her work at Worldwide Facilities. She is an active member of the Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association’s career development committee, a member of the International Institute of Business Analysis and is currently working toward her CPCU. She is also actively involved in promoting careers in risk management to college students, speaking at numerous colleges on the topic.



A marine broker in Marsh Wortham’s Houston office, Randall Holloman places hull/P&I, marine liability, cargo and inland marine coverage and has built up an impressive list of accomplishments throughout his career. He designed a project cargo and marine liability/port ops program for an oil & gas client who was building a large liquefied natural gas plant in Africa, helped a large vessel operator extend their casualty tower from a $700 million limit to $1 billion by scouring the global marine liability market to find every bit of available capacity, and managed to secure a 10% rate reduction on the hull and machinery placement for a large client with a loss ratio of more than 70%. Holloman also serves as Marsh Wortham’s marine line placing broker for large risk-managed Fortune 500 accounts. Extremely connected in the marine insurance industry, Hollomon is a soughtafter mentor in the sector.

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YOUNG GUNS 2019 JONATHAN CHARAK Vice president and emerging solutions director ZURICH NORTH AMERICA Age: 35

Jonathan Charak has worn many hats during his 14 years with Zurich, from investigating and providing recommendations on how to improve the US crop business, to leading the finance actuary function in Zurich’s Australia office. In 2018, Charak was asked to establish the Zurich North America autonomous vehicle working group and continues to lead this cross-functional group with the ultimate goal of taking a proposition to the market. Earlier this year, he was named a Zurich North America Innovation Champion, one of six representatives charged with participating in exploratory and innovative projects. Also this year, Charak was appointed vice president and emerging solutions director, a role in which he works closely with Zurich’s line of business heads, business leaders and product developers. Charak is known for thoroughly exploring emerging risks and potential new propositions, providing recommendations to senior leadership and deftly leading working groups to bring products to fruition.

JIM HIGGINS Senior broker



Associate director

Age: 33


A West Point graduate and Army infantry officer for seven years, Jim Higgins began his career in insurance four years ago at All Risks’ Denver office, where he became instrumental in the growth and expansion of an office that now has more than 30 staff members. Along with his team, Higgins primarily focuses on residential and commercial OCIP/CCIP and project-specific construction risks, as well as annual practice policies and all other construction-related general liability risks. In his four years with All Risks, Higgins has earned business from agents throughout the country, including the fast-growing Pacific Northwest region. He received All Risks’ New Broker of the Year Award in 2018.


When he was just 18, Luke Hall joined THB Group as a technician. He eventually progressed to broker and then producer before being appointed associate director in 2017. Earlier this year, he became the youngest partner in the company. While retaining the best of traditional practices, Hall has embraced and promoted new technology and systems to enhance client and market experience, earning him praise from underwriters. “Luke is honest and trustworthy and has a very strong work ethic, a good sense of humor and a quick mind, which have served him well,” says Lisa Tressider, an underwriter at Brit Global Specialty. “I have no doubt that Luke will have a very long and successful career in the Lloyd’s market and will rise to a very senior level, and deservedly so. He is without doubt the best up-and-coming broker I have ever had the pleasure to work with.”

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27/09/2019 4:58:27 AM

CLAIRE MUSELMAN Director of workers’ compensation CONTINENTAL WESTERN GROUP Age: 34

With a motto of “making good things happen for injured workers,” Claire Muselman transformed the workers’ compensation claims department at Continental Western Insurance Companies into the Workers Recovery Unit, putting the focus on the injured worker as a person who wants to be productive again. The program is a direct result of Muselman’s 15-plus years of direct claims experience and her passion for providing a better customer experience. Muselman and her team focus on communication and understanding the psychosocial elements that might not be communicated to workers at the beginning of the claims process. On top of her daily responsibilities, Muselman also speaks nationally on the topic of humanity in claims.

RANDY MYERS Divisional assistant vice president, New York construction GREAT AMERICAN INSURANCE GROUP Age: 32

LAUREN PRATSCHER Senior vice president MARSH Age: 34

Lauren Pratscher joined Marsh as an advisory representative in 2011 and quickly set herself apart by championing the company’s analytical platform as a tool for innovative program design and strategic decision-making. Promoted to vice president a few years later, Pratscher became the North Central Partnership growth leader, working with client executives and producers to further Marsh’s casualty value proposition and expand the company’s casualty reach. Today, as a senior vice president, Pratscher manages a team of 10 that places coverage for more than 200 accounts in 13 cities. Pratscher and her team are responsible for strengthening market relationships with key trading partners, strategic program development and design, loss forecasting, and collateral modeling. Pratscher also manages a $3 million book of accounts in the Fortune 500 space, serves as a liaison for new business opportunities across the central zone and mentors up-andcoming female colleagues.

Working his way up from underwriter trainee in 2012 to divisional assistant vice president today, Randy Myers has been involved in every level of Great American Insurance Group’s underwriting division, including risk selection, rejection, pricing, retention, growth and profitability. He also assesses risk quality and compliance and reviews contract and policy language to identify potential ambiguities, errors and omissions. Currently, Myers is responsible for managing virtually all aspects of Great American Insurance Group’s New York construction underwriting unit, which involves setting and executing the company’s overall underwriting strategy in this notoriously difficult segment. Myers is well known and respected within the broker community as an expert in this class and is highly involved in the New York construction industry outside of the office.

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27/09/2019 4:58:34 AM



Get with the program IBA takes a closer look at how brokers can capitalize on one of the fastest-growing segments of the insurance industry

FINDING A NICHE – a space where you have a level of expert knowledge not held by many others – is one of the most effective ways to stand out in a crowded insurance landscape. While ‘differentiation’ is a term that gets thrown around a lot, truly being different requires finding an area of special-

ally representing a book of similar risks placed with one carrier, program business includes product marketing, underwriting selection, binding, and issuing, and may also include billing, premium collections, data gathering, claims management and loss control, and risk sharing. These programs are then distributed

“Data has always been king in terms of trying to put a program together because a program defies the underwriting rules that carriers come up with on their own” Scott H. Smith, RT Specialty ization and then figuring out how to capitalize on it. Program business is a space that’s all about those areas of specialization that often get overlooked. Defined by the Target Markets Program Administrators Association [TMPAA] as insurance products targeted to a particular niche market or class and gener-


through retail, wholesale or direct channels. The rate of growth in the program industry is easily outpacing the wider commercial lines market: According to the TMPAA, US program business now generates premium revenue in excess of $36.1 billion. The TMPAA’s most recent State of Program Business Study in 2017 showed

just how rapidly the market is expanding and highlighted how important specialization is becoming in insurance. The study found that program business premium revenue increased by 11.7% between 2014 and 2016. Since the TMPAA’s initial study in 2011, program business revenue has more than doubled, from $17.5 billion in 2010 to $36.1 billion in 2016. And while the wider commercial insurance industry posted a 1.3% growth rate between 2015 and 2016, the program industry grew by more than 5.3% over the same period. “There has never been a more interesting time to be in the insurance business,” says Tony Campisi, president and CEO of Glatfelter Insurance Group and former president of the TMPAA advisory board. “This is a dynamic and challenging time.

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Market forces of consolidation, competition, capital and technology are driving an increasing pace of change in our business, which continues to create opportunities to find new and better ways to connect with our customers and help them manage risk. What better way to meet those needs than being in the program business?”

Driven by data According to Scott H. Smith, president of RT Specialty’s Hartford office, data has been the driving force behind the strong growth in program business in recent years. “Data has always been king in terms of trying to put a program together because a program defies the underwriting rules that carriers come up with on their own,” he says. “They have their own data from which they ...

identify what risks they will transfer to themselves and under what terms and conditions.” According to Smith, the brokerage side of the industry is trying to “out-data” carriers

with its own data. As he explains, approaching a carrier and demanding they alter their underwriting guidelines and change both terms of coverage and price requires the

PROGRAM BUSINESS IN FOCUS There are roughly 1,000 organizations in the US that meet the TMPAA’s definition of program administrator Forty-five percent of program administrators surveyed by TMPAA said they’re looking to acquire other firms in the next five years Larger administrators were more likely to express interest in acquiring other program administrators Twenty-one percent of carriers said they plan to grow their program business by acquiring program administrators Source: State of Program Business Study 2017, Target Markets Program Administrators Association

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27/09/2019 4:21:33 AM




29% $75 million $20 to $75 million Up to $20 million



Source: State of Program Business Study 2017, Target Markets Program Administrators Association

brokerage to have a strong case that defies the carrier’s previous experience. “That’s what we’ve been able to do better, not just at RT, but the whole wholesale distribution network,” he says. “The network is mature enough and has invested in technology enough that we can gather data and make a good argument for why we should get our own preferential terms and conditions rather than the underwriting guidelines the carriers are comfortable with.” Programs generally come into existence because of a gap in the appetite of the marketplace. A program administrator might find a

“Developing unique skills in a niche and marketing yourself as a true expert is creating lots of opportunities for people in the program space” Tom Gillingham, EverGuard Insurance Services unicorn company in a struggling insurance segment that deserves preferential pricing and approach the carrier with a proposition. Smith highlights commercial auto as an area where a struggling class of business could present an opportunity for program business. “I think as this market evolves and underwriting becomes tighter and pricing becomes higher, there are going to be more discussions about programs,” he says. “So we find a niche within a class that’s underserved and convince a carrier that we’ve found the right way to underwrite it. The receptivity of an underwriter to that discussion becomes rarer unless, again, we’ve been able to find a unicorn where we can identify the cause of loss that is underwriteable.”

Natural evolution Tom Gillingham, CEO and co-owner of EverGuard Insurance Services and a TMPAA


advisory board member, agrees that the insurance industry’s move to embrace technology has been a key driver in the growth of program business. Not long ago, he says, certain carriers has some misgivings about “giving up the pen to program administrators and engineers,” but as the industry has increased its use of real-time systems and data analytics, carriers can better understand what their partners are doing and can accurately monitor the results. This new level of detail has driven out some of the “bad actors” in the marketplace, Gillingham says, and has created a rela-

tionship of transparency between capital providers and program administrators. “I also think there’s been just a general move to specialization, whether that’s in the retail space or the underwriting or program administration space,” Gillingham says. “People are seeing real value in specializing, as opposed to being a generalist. Developing unique skills in a niche and marketing yourself as a true expert is creating lots of opportunities for people in the program space. “And lastly, in particular, the margins are very attractive,” he adds. “It’s a business where, if you do specialize and you use the technological resources and data available, it drives a very nice margin. So it’s an attractive space for capital to go into and for entrepreneurs and businesspeople to pursue because it tends to generate a better margin than the traditional sort of mainstream generalist retail business.”

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27/09/2019 4:36:31 AM


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27/09/2019 13/07/2018 4:21:46 1:55:41 AM AM



Building a strong sales culture Mike Heffernan, president and CEO of Heffernan Insurance Brokers, outlines how he created a leading brokerage by setting up salespeople to succeed

IBA: Heffernan Insurance Brokers traces its roots back to a small insurance agency in Walnut Creek, California. What made you decide to purchase that agency? Mike Heffernan: After gaining experience with both independent and public brokers, I decided I wanted to run my own independent brokerage. I knew I needed a base so that I had some insurance carrier relationships, and I wanted to have majority ownership. I found a small agency in Walnut Creek that was in a bit of a tricky financial situation. I was able to negotiate a majority ownership on day one, which meant I could direct the firm’s transformation.

IBA: What immediate changes did you make to turn the agency around? MH: To start off, I renegotiated everything from the computer system contract to the lease agreement for the office building to every kind of vendor contract we were involved in. I established a strong sales culture from day one. I made every salesperson more accountable for their actions in order to turn the firm into a sales organization – and it worked. A couple of employees really engaged with the culture and became more successful than


they had ever been in the past. For example, I promoted an account manager, Melani Conti, who I thought could be a top salesperson. Melani is still with Heffernan Insurance Brokers today, and she is one of our more successful salespeople.

stability is key to our success. It also comes down to our strong sales culture. Our job is to sell insurance and do a good job for our clients. Everybody in our organization knows that, believes in that and helps us to succeed.

IBA: Fast-forward to 2019, and Heffernan Insurance Brokers is one of the largest independent insurance brokerages in the US. What’s the secret to your success? MH: It’s all to do with our people and our

IBA: Are there any challenges to remaining independent? MH: No, not at all. We have strong compet-

culture. Many of the key employees in our organization have been with us for over 20 years. That has allowed us to keep moving forward and never look back. I think that

itors who are public, who are private-equityowned and who are independent. I think we compete well against all of them. We believe we’re a strong independent brokerage, and we want to stay that way. As long as we’re comfortable with our strategy going forward, and our balance sheet is strong

ABOUT MIKE HEFFERNAN Mike Heffernan started working in insurance at age 22 as an intern for Lloyd’s and then as an underwriter for Aetna Casualty & Surety. After several years, he became a producer with a national insurance brokerage, consistently ranking in the top 10 for sales. At the age of 29, Heffernan purchased a small insurance brokerage in Walnut Creek, California, which had 19 employees and was struggling financially. That company, now Heffernan Insurance Brokers, has since grown to become one of the largest independent brokerages in the US, with more than 420 employees and 10 branches spread across California, Oregon, Missouri and Arizona.

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23% 3%

Business insurance Personal insurance Employee benefits


Year founded: 1988 Number of employees: 420 Number of offices: 10 Headquarters: Walnut Creek, California Leadership: Mike Heffernan, president and CEO

“I made every salesperson more accountable for their actions in order to turn the firm into a sales organization – and it worked” enough to take care of shareholders moving down the road, we should be fine.

IBA: Heffernan Insurance Brokers donates more than 10% of its profits to charity each year. How did that come about? MH: We believe that giving back to the

community is an essential part of running a business. Over the years, we’ve donated over $11 million. It really is part of our DNA. It’s something that has allowed us to celebrate the communities we operate in by helping others who are less fortunate than us achieve what they want to achieve. In 2006, we created the Heffernan Foun-

dation to further support our dedication and commitment to social responsibility. A lot of our emphasis is on education, but it’s also on direct assistance, making sure people in our communities are fed and housed. The one thing that’s interesting to me is that in 30 years of giving back, not one of our shareholders – and we have over 130 – has ever asked: “Why don’t I get a dividend when we’re giving money back?” That’s a testament to the kind of people we have working here, and it shows it’s important to them that we give back to the community. That’s probably the thing I’m most proud of.

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27/09/2019 4:22:33 AM



Stop that 80-hour hustle Starting your own business isn’t easy – but it also doesn’t have to involve endless hours of work. Aytekin Tank explains how and why to cut back

“ENTREPRENEURS ARE willing to work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week.” Maybe you’ve already seen this quote from serial entrepreneur and Shark Tank star Lori Greiner. If not, I bet you’ve heard a version of it. Entrepreneurs are infamous for busybragging. Sometimes it even feels like a competition: Who can work the longest? Who can sacrifice the most? Who will sleep at the office and go a full week without natural light? Yes, starting a business is hard work, and Greiner’s dedication has clearly paid off (she’s created over 700 products and holds 120 patents). But the willingness she describes is really about freedom. Whether they’re chasing a big idea or solving a real problem, most founders also want to call the shots, to make their own money, set their own hours and create something they care about. So why are we all trying to outwork each other? I don’t believe in the 24/7 hustle and grind. It’s not productive. And it’s starting to kill us. I also know firsthand that starting a business is not easy. I’ve been on a 12-year entrepreneurial journey, slowly building JotForm


into a global company with four million users and 110 employees. So where is the balance? How can you fulfill your vision without sacrificing yourself? Instead of logging more hours, the answer is to make the most of the hours you work.

management. Controlling your work is a matter of focus, not creating a crazy-strict schedule. When you focus your attention, you maximize your time, which increases your motivation. It’s a productive cycle that feels really, really good.

Instead of logging more hours, the answer is to make the most of the hours you work. If you’re smart about time management, you might be amazed by how much you can achieve in a sane, focused week If you’re smart about time management, you might be amazed by how much you can achieve in a sane, focused week. Here are five strategies that help me to avoid overworking – even when there’s always more to do.

1. Minimize your active projects Time management is attention

At any given time, I have no more than three core goals or active projects. That’s it. I say no to everything else. I delegate or save any outside tasks for later. You can also try a more sophisticated approach. In a Fast Company article, Google for Work director Thomas Davies described the problem with most time management strategies: “Managing time starts from the

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2. Mono-task, don’t multi-task Establishing core priorities will narrow your focus. You also need to perform just one task at a time. That’s because, as Phyllis Korkki wrote in The New York Times, multi-tasking is a biological impossibility: “Your brain may delude itself into thinking that it has more capacity than it really does, but it’s really working extra hard to handle multiple thoughts at once when you are switching back and forth between tasks. Your ability to get things done depends on how well you can focus on one task at a time, whether it’s for five minutes or an hour.” To create a mono-tasking environment, Korkki suggests that you remove all temptations – even if that means installing anti-distraction programs like Freedom or FocusMe. Also, use just one screen. Work in set chunks of time, and if you lose focus, get up and walk around. You can also try the popular Pomodoro technique, which breaks the day into highly focused 25-minute intervals, followed by a five-minute break. After four intervals, you take a 15-minute break – ideally away from all screens and mobile devices. premise that your workload is going to be what it’s going to be, and the best you can do is keep it ‘manageable.’ But what if you could design your workday instead?” Davies decided to create a new strategy. He divided his work responsibilities into four quadrants: people development, business operations, transactional tasks and representative tasks. Then he slotted every task into one of the four quadrants.

Once he had a high-level view of what actually occupied his time, he could decide what mattered most – and what made him feel most energized. Now he tries to maximize his work in those high-value quadrants. If this method speaks to you, give it a try. As Davies explains, you’ll soon realize that not all tasks are created equal. Armed with that knowledge, you can be mindful of where to dedicate your attention.

3. Cut back on meetings Meetings have become a contentious topic in entrepreneurial circles. Tesla founder Elon Musk told his staff to “walk out of a meeting or drop off a call as soon as it’s obvious you aren’t adding value.” And Basecamp’s Jason Fried says “it’s hard to come up with a bigger waste of money, time or attention than status meetings.” Some meetings are critical, but many are

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not. Unless the meeting can remove a roadblock or it’s essential for team cohesion, find another way. Send an email and follow up later. Say no and protect your time. You’ll be helping colleagues and co-workers to regain their focus, too. I’m honored to receive a lot of requests for coffee and casual get-to-know-you meetings. I mentor some young entrepreneurs, but I politely decline everything from speaking invitations to networking events. I wish I had time to accommodate everyone, but I just don’t. I have to draw a firm boundary – and you should as well.

will rebel, too. You’ll be less analytical, way less creative, and your emotions will eventually overrule all logical thoughts. I spent a summer in Izmir, Turkey, where JotForm has a small office. It’s a beautiful city by the sparkling Aegean Sea. So I worked

took three months off to travel across Europe. It’s a matter of planning and sticking to your priorities. For example, if you’re working in your business, it doesn’t function without you. When you work on your business, you can

Imagine your brain is a whiteboard. Every time you make a decision, you’re wiping off more scribbles. Soon, it’s clear and ready for creative thought

4. Make quick decisions Hoarding decisions creates stress. When your mind is buzzing with many different choices – from what to eat for lunch to which job candidate to hire – it’s almost impossible to have a productive workday. Now imagine your brain is a whiteboard. Every time you make a decision, you’re wiping off more scribbles. Soon, it’s clear and ready for creative thought. When it comes to decision-making, speed is the goal here. There are very few decisions that can’t be made quickly. I know that goes against conventional wisdom, but give it a try. If you’ve already gathered enough information, combine that data with your personal instincts and make a choice – now. Don’t have enough data? Then forget the decision and gather what you need. Once you have the right information, make your choice and move on. Repeat as needed.

5. Make the most of your work time – then step away Vacations and downtime are essential for success. There’s just no way around it. You can hustle with the best of them, but at some point, your body is going to say no. The mind


four-day weeks and explored the nearby beach towns with my family. I realize this is a great privilege – and I know you might have a few more questions. Don’t you feel pressure to show your face in the office? Do you worry that your team will lose morale and slack off if you’re not there? Honestly, I’m just not concerned about it. I guess some employees might slip into ‘relaxation’ mode if I’m not in the office, but I also know that our teams love their work. They’re knee-deep in meaningful projects, and I have great respect for what they contribute to JotForm. I encourage our employees to take time off, too. If you don’t take vacations, you’ll burn out and eventually produce less. As CEO, my job is to ensure our teams are motivated and they don’t hit roadblocks. Our employees won’t function well if they don’t take care of themselves. How on earth can I ease up when I’m just launching or growing my business? I promise it’s not impossible. Even during the early days of my company, my wife and I

develop systems and processes that let you step away. You build a company that doesn’t break if you’re not answering every email or performing every single task. Even as a solopreneur, you can plan to hit pause – if it matters to you. I know the details can be tricky, and this is a far easier proposition with an online business. But ultimately, life isn’t all about work. I don’t know about you, but I don’t to want to work, work, work and then retire for a couple years before I die. I want to enjoy my life and my freedom. Be strategic. Ask for help. Develop systems and safety nets that allow you to step away, even for a short time. You and your business will be so much better for it. Soon, you won’t even dream about using the word ‘hustle.’ Aytekin Tank is the founder and CEO of JotForm, an online form creation software with four million users worldwide and more than 100 employees. A developer by trade but writer by heart, Tank shares stories about how he exponentially grew his company without any outside funding. For more information, visit

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Michael Costello has never squandered an opportunity to capitalize on the next big thing Costello’s entrepreneurial streak first emerged at the age of 11, when he convinced his parents to purchase 200 bottles of water, which he then sold for $1 each at the local Independence Day parade. “I sold all the water within two hours, then jumped on a parade float and rode it four miles away from my very worried parents! When I got my driver’s license, I got business cards and started sober driving my parents’ friends.”



2009 INTERNS AT LLOYD’S When Costello was 18, he and his 19-year-old brother spent a summer interning in London for Lloyd’s at a wholesale brokerage and MGA. “We had never been away from home, much less in a foreign country – we had the time of our lives. We were sponges, soaking it all up. It shaped where I wanted to go with this.”

2011 HARNESSES SOCIAL MEDIA Still in college, Costello got his property & casualty license at a time when LinkedIn had just become a major business tool. “I found that I could cherry-pick new business by finding out when my dad’s former CFO clients moved to new businesses. Dad had built his network for 20 years; I had a list of a couple hundred names and could track them when they moved.”

2015 FOUNDS EVOLVE Together with his brother, Patrick, Costello launched Evolve MGA within the cyber specialist market, mindful of the fact that cyber coverage applies across the board.

“Since EPL, I haven’t seen a new field that applies to everything; we thought there was a limited window of time on this emerging product. It took my dad 30 years to get to a certain value; I think we can get there in 10”


SEES A MILLION-DOLLAR CHECK While working at his father’s retail insurance agency, sorting mail and answering phones, Costello happened to see a check for $1 million from one of his dad’s major clients, which led him to an important decision. “At that moment, I realized I wanted to commit to a career in the insurance industry. I’ve always been really independent and know there’s a price tag associated with that.”

2010 GETS A TASTE OF THE CARRIER SIDE After his first year of college, Costello secured an internship working under the CEO of Fireman’s Fund, which strengthened his commitment to the industry. “It was an unbelievable internship; I met with every single department head at Fireman’s Fund. The highlight of the summer was learning about underwriting exposure behind the scenes of movies at Universal Studios.”

2013 DECIDES TO SPECIALIZE IN CYBER Within a week of graduating from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, Costello moved back to London to work as a wholesale broker, specializing in cyber and technology errors & omissions. He made sure to take his mentor out for a meal once a month for the next three years. “At one of those 7 a.m. coffee meetings under Lloyd’s of London, I decided I wanted to start an MGA specializing in the emerging industry of cyber insurance.”

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Stuardi has ru n four of the six marathons necessary to complete the Abbott World Marathon Majors (Chicago, New Y ork, Tokyo a nd London) a nd has his sights on the other two. He’s training for Berlin now a nd pla ns to ru n Boston next year


Stuardi’s finish time for his first marathon in Chicago; his most recent time is 4:23


Weeks between Stuardi’s first marathon and his second (which he says he “was talked into”)


Amount Stuardi raised for Project Purple by running the New York Marathon

RUNNING FOR HIS LIFE Insurance exec Rob Stuardi had never run more than 10k when he started training for his first marathon after cancer surgery. Now he runs the world WHEN ROB STUARDI, heavily sedated from a life-saving surgery after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, told his wife he was going to run a marathon, they both laughed. But less than 18 months later, Stuardi, the managing director of American Equity Underwriters, started planning to achieve that goal, despite the fact that he hadn’t run in 20 years.


“Registration was over [for the Chicago marathon],” Stuardi recalls. “I realized I could run for a charity, found [pancreatic cancer charity] Project Purple, emailed them saying I was a pancreatic cancer survivor, and they registered me. “In 20 weeks, I went from not being able to run to finishing the marathon. I had to train to even start training; I was

in such bad shape.” Stuardi went on to raise more than $14,000 for Project Purple – and discovered a new purpose. “Running a marathon was on my bucket list; my mentality and drive had changed after surviving cancer,” he says. “Now I want to run two a year – one American and one international.”

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IT Executive at Great American. Volunteer leader in Cincinnati. Meet Jane Bracken, whose servant leadership with Big Brothers Big Sisters started in college and has grown to local board positions. We’re proud of employees like Jane, who share your passion to do great things together.

for all the


you do


Work with a company that shares your priorities and believes that promises should be kept. Š 2019 Great American Insurance Company, 301 E. Fourth St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. All rights reserved.

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Expect big things in workers’ compensation. Most classes approved, nationwide. It pays to get a quote from Applied.® For information call (877) 234-4450 or visit Follow us at

©2019 Applied Underwriters, Inc. Rated A (Excellent) by AM Best. Insurance plans protected U.S. Patent No. 7,908,157.

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