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A.M. BEST'S MONTHLY INSURANCE MAGAZINE


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Executive Changes
Vantis Life CEO to Retire at Year End

Also: AIG names a new CEO for Lexington, FWD appoints a former AIG executive as managing director and Travelers appoints a successor to CFO Benet.
  • October 2018
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Peter Tedone

Peter Tedone

Ray Caucci

Ray Caucci

Peter Tedone will retire at the end of the year as chief executive officer of Vantis Life Insurance Co., where he has been president and chairman as well as CEO for the past 18 years.

He will be succeeded as chairman and CEO by Ray Caucci, who is currently senior vice president of product management, underwriting and advanced sales at Penn Mutual, a Pennsylvania-based life insurance company that is a separately operated subsidiary of Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co.

Concurrent with Caucci's appointment, Scott Smith, current executive vice president and chief operating officer of Vantis, will be promoted to president and COO.

According to Vantis Life, over his 31-year career at Vantis, Tedone “transformed the company into a leading provider of life insurance for midmarket and emerging affluent customers by marketing through banks and now direct-to-consumer.”

Caucci has more than 30 years of experience at Penn Mutual.

Smith joined Vantis 20 years ago and progressed through the leadership ranks and was named to his current role as COO in 2007. He was named executive vice president of Vantis in 2011 and director of the board at Vantis in 2017.

—David Pilla

AIG Names CEOs for Lexington, Europe

Thomas Lillelund

Thomas Lillelund

Emil Issavi

Emil Issavi

American International Group Inc. said David H. McElroy—former head of the Arch Capital Group Ltd. insurance group—will join AIG as chief executive officer of Lexington Insurance Co. He will serve as a member of the general insurance executive leadership team.

McElroy succeeds George Stratts, who was named CEO of Lexington in November. Stratts left AIG earlier this year.

Previous to his tenure at Arch, McElroy worked at Hartford Financial Services Corp., Reliance National and Chubb.

Also, AIG named Thomas Lillelund chief executive officer of its new European company as Bermuda-based Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd. named his replacement as head of its reinsurance unit.

Lillelund will be CEO of AIG Europe SA, headquartered in Luxembourg.

Emil Issavi, president and chief underwriting officer of Aspen Re, has been appointed to lead the reinsurance business. Issavi will retain his current titles as president and CUO of reinsurance. Issavi has been CUO of Aspen Re, Aspen's reinsurance business since August 2012 and president of Aspen Re since September 2014.

At AIG, Lillelund will be responsible for Continental Europe and Ireland. Anthony Baldwin, currently CEO of AIG Europe Ltd., will become CEO of AIG's new U.K. entity, American International Group UK Ltd.

Previously, Lillelund was regional managing director of the Asia-Pacific region for Aspen Re.

FWD Appoints Managing Director, Group COO

Robert Schimek

Robert Schimek

FWD Group has appointed Robert Schimek as managing director and group chief operating officer for the insurer's expansion and future growth, according to the Hong Kong-based insurer.

Schimek was most recently president and chief executive officer of American International Group Inc.'s global commercial insurance business. Prior to that, Schimek was CEO of the Americas at AIG, responsible for its operations in the United States, Canada and Latin America. He also held positions as president and CEO of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, as well as chief financial officer of AIG's global property/casualty business. He was a partner at Deloitte &Touche before joining AIG.

FWD is the insurance unit of Hong Kong investment company Pacific Century Group.

Hong Kong's Regulator Appoints New CEO

Clement Cheung

Clement Cheung

The Insurance Authority of Hong Kong has appointed Clement Cheung as chief executive officer for a term of two years.

Cheung was the insurance commissioner from 2006 to 2009 and joined the government's administrative service in 1983 serving in various bureaus and departments in Hong Kong. Cheung succeeds John Leung. The IA started operations in June 2017, replacing the Office of the Insurance Commissioner as prudential regulator and facilitator of the Hong Kong insurance market.

Zurich Names Canada CEO; Other Appointments

Saad Mered

Saad Mered

Eric Cittadino

Eric Cittadino

Zurich Insurance Co. has appointed Saad Mered as chief executive officer and chief agent of Zurich Canada.

Mered will assume the chief agent role from David Levinson, who will work with him during the transition. Levinson will return to the United States “to explore other opportunities at Zurich,” the company said. Mered is currently chief claims officer for Zurich Insurance Group.

Ian Thompson, currently head of claims for Europe, Middle East and Africa, will become group chief claims officer. Both appointments are effective on Oct. 1.

Mered joined Zurich in 2008 as CEO for Zurich Middle East. In 2010, he was appointed CEO of general insurance for the Middle East and Africa. In 2014 he became chief claims officer for the Zurich group. Mered began his career in 1994 at American International Group, where he held various positions.

Also, Zurich North America has named Eric Cittadino as strategic business unit leader for diversified programs, specialty automobile and aftermarket within the programs unit of alternative markets. Cittadino, most recently chief of staff for alternative markets, succeeds David Banks, who plans to retire at the end of the year.

Cittadino has more than 20 years of underwriting experience. Since joining Zurich in 2000, he held several roles, including regional vice president in construction for commercial markets.

AmWINS Names a President; Leaders

Robert Petrilli

Robert Petrilli

Insurance specialty broker AmWINS Group Inc. named Robert Petrilli president of the firm's underwriting division.

Petrilli will oversee 11 operating companies that offer more than 60 in-house programs, representing more than $1.7 billion in underwritten premium. The position is a new one for AmWINS.

Previously, Petrilli served as chief executive officer, North America, for Swiss Re Corporate Solutions and group managing director for Swiss Re Group from 2006 to 2017.

Also, AmWINS Group has appointed leaders for two new specialty managing general agencies focused on the marine industry.

Executive Vice President Alex Rosas will lead AmWINS Specialty Logistics Underwriters from Sunrise, Florida. Sentinel Marine Underwriters has co-leaders—EVP Mark Bernas in Houston and EVP Keith Blair in New York.

Bernas and Blair were previously assistant vice presidents at CNA, where Bernas was national cargo practice leader and Blair was in ocean and inland marine. Rosas earlier was an ocean marine underwriting specialist at Sompo International.

Travelers Appoints Successor to CFO Benet

Daniel Frey

Daniel Frey

Jay Benet

Jay Benet

Travelers Cos. Inc. has appointed Daniel Frey as chief financial officer. He succeeds Jay Benet, who remains vice chairman.

Frey joined the company 15 years ago and prior to this appointment served as personal insurance chief financial officer. Previously he was claim and field management CFO. Earlier he was CFO at Spalding Sports Worldwide.

Benet had served as CFO since 2002.

He will support the transition to Frey as company CFO then take on a variety of responsibilities including serving as a strategic adviser.

EPIC Names Principal in New York

EPIC Insurance Brokers &Consultants said Lou D'Agostino, a risk management and insurance brokerage veteran, along with his team, Iron Cove Partners, has joined the company.

D'Agostino has more than 17 years of experience in the insurance brokerage field and served in the financial services industry. He, along with his team, will be based in EPIC's New York City midtown office. They will report to EPIC's Northeast region president, Thomas O'Neil, and operate as Iron Cove—a division of EPIC.

Before forming Iron Cove, D'Agostino spent a decade with broker Frank Crystal &Co. in New York, where he was a director in the financial services practice. Prior to entering the insurance and risk management industry, D'Agostino played running back and special teams with the New York Jets in 1996.

IAT Insurance Group Appoints SVP

Donna McDermott

Donna McDermott

IAT Insurance Group has appointed Donna McDermott as senior vice president, assumed reinsurance. She succeeds Senior Vice President Jim Miller, who leads IAT Reinsurance. Miller plans to retire in March 2019.

McDermott joins IAT Re from Aspen Re America, where she was a senior vice president and head of national accounts treaty North America and earlier led specialty casualty. Prior to joining Aspen Re, she was an executive at XL Reinsurance America.

Legacy Insurer Darag Appoints CEO and CFO

Tom Booth

Tom Booth

Malta-based legacy acquirer Darag has made Tom Booth its group chief executive officer and has named James Halley as group chief financial officer.

Darag's current group CEO, Stuart Davies, will continue as executive chairman through the transition. He will then become nonexecutive chairman.

Booth joins Darag from Randall &Quilter Investment Holdings in Bermuda, where he was chief financial officer and sourced and executed North American-based legacy transactions.

He also has experience in the United Kingdom and Europe. Before Randall &Quilter, Booth was corporate finance director for Numis Securities and headed the corporate finance team for the nonlife insurance sector.

Halley succeeds Mike Trotman and will be based in London.

Halley has 30 years of experience in finance and accountancy, and most recently was finance director of Aegis London. He has held finance roles across a range of sectors. He was group finance director for Axa Ireland between 1998 and 2000 and was an insurance and finance services partner at Arthur Andersen between 1988 and 1998.

Assurant Appoints Chief Compliance Officer

Assurant Inc. has named John Pawloski senior vice president, chief compliance officer. He is based in the firm's Atlanta office.

He succeeds Doris Vigo, who will retire at the end of 2019 and remain with the company until then.

Preceding his appointment, Pawloski was chief compliance officer for USAA's Enterprise Staff Agencies group. Before joining USAA, Pawloski served as general counsel at Southwest Business Corp.

Axis Capital Appoints Executives

Marcus Pollak

Marcus Pollak

Marcus Pollak was appointed to the newly created role of head of product center for the reinsurance arm of Axis Capital Holdings Ltd.

Based in Zurich, Pollak will lead underwriting process and portfolio management activities for Axis Re.

Pollak joins Axis Re from Partner Re, where he spent 17 years and was most recently head of analysis and reporting. He was also on Partner Re's senior management team and before that was chief operating officer for specialty lines and head of credit and surety.

Earlier, Axis Capital named Anne Kelly global head of ceded reinsurance. She will be responsible for leading the company's ceded reinsurance function across all of its insurance product lines and will be based in New York.

Kelly has 30 years of insurance and reinsurance industry experience. She was previously second vice president at Travelers and also held underwriting roles at Shelby Insurance and Chubb.

Cincinnati Financial to Appoint CIO Successor

Cincinnati Financial Corp. will appoint Stephen Spray as chief insurance officer at the start of the new year. He will succeed J.F. Scherer, who plans to retire in August 2019.

Scherer started his career at his father's independent insurance agency in 1974. He joined Cincinnati Financial 10 years later.

Spray, who will also assume executive oversight of property/casualty operations, has been senior vice president of commercial insurance operations at Cincinnati Financial since the beginning of 2016. He has 30 years of experience including work as an agent, underwriter and field marketing representative.

Sales and marketing Senior Vice President Sean Givler will succeed Spray as the head of commercial lines. He has been with the company more than 20 years.

Sales field Assistant Secretary Angela Delaney will take leadership of property/casualty insurance sales and marketing operations. She has spent 20 of her 30 years in the industry at Cincinnati Financial.

Tokio Marine HCC Names Rivera as CEO

Susan Rivera

Susan Rivera

Tokio Marine HCC has appointed Susan Rivera chief executive officer. She succeeds current CEO Christopher J.B. Williams, who is taking another position with the company.

Rivera has served as Tokio Marine HCC's executive vice president and chief operating officer since April 1 and from 2014 to 2015 she served as an independent director on the company's board of directors and served on various committees. From 2009 until earlier this year, Rivera served as president and CEO of V3 Insurance Partners LLC—Newtown, Pennsylvania-based specialty program administrator.

Williams will take up the position of managing executive officer and co-head of international business for Tokio Marine Holdings Inc.

Philippines' National Re Names CEO

The National Reinsurance Corporation of the Philippines appointed Allan Rossi Santos as its new president and chief executive officer. He succeeds Augusto Hidalgo, who is pursuing other opportunities.

Prior to this appointment, Santos was Nat Re's executive vice president and chief operating officer. He has more than 25 years of experience in local and international insurance/reinsurance markets in the United States, Asia and Europe.

Hidalgo served as president and CEO for four years.


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