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J. Spero Zacharias SVP, Chubb
ACORD Board Chair
J. Spero Zacharias, Senior Vice President of Chubb, is Manager of International Field Operations for its Accident and Health Division. Spero leads Agency distribution for Chubb’s Accident and Health businesses across 54 countries outside of the United States. Over his 27 years at Chubb, Spero has held leadership positions that include responsibilities for P&L management, Marketing, Information Technology and Operations management. His marketing experience includes distribution management in six Latin American countries and the United States. He served as Chairman of the board of ACORD Solutions Group (ASG) and Vice Chairman of the board of ACORD. Spero serves on the Executive Committee of Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business Advisory Board and previously served as Co-Chairman of the Board of Overseers at Fordham’s Graduate School of Business. He works closely with CEOs, CFOs and COOs across several industries. He holds a Masters of Business Administration from Gabelli with dual concentrations in Finance and Management and a B.A. in International Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Tony Mattioli CIO, AssuredPartners, Inc.
ACORD Board Vice-Chair
Bill Pieroni President & CEO, ACORD
John Artesani EVP & COO, Lexington Insurance Company
Steven Beard Chief Executive Officer, RTG & RFIB
Steven Beard was appointed as Risk Transfer Group CEO and RFIB CEO in May 2018. Steven joined the Group in December 2017 as its CFO and CEO of George Yard Services (a newly created central services company).
Prior to this, Beard most recently served as Group CEO of technology and professional services company, Agilisys, which under his management became one of the largest employee owned businesses within the UK.
Prior to Agilisys, Beard served in a number of senior positions in the UK and the US with global business process and technology company, Xchanging. When Xchanging listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2007 he was responsible for the largest and most profitable part of the group including the Insurance Sector. Beard has also served as CFO of Redwave plc, the UK based venture capital business. He began his career working for a series of Lloyd’s managing agents including Navigators, Brockbank and XL Capital.
Beard is a Fellow Chartered Certified Accountant.
Kirk Behrens Global Chief Operating Officer, Aon Health Solutions
Kirk Behrens is the Global Chief Operating Officer of Aon’s Health Solutions business. He is responsible for developing and executing the strategic direction for global technology and operations. Additionally, Mr. Behrens chairs Aon’s Global Operations & Technology Council. Prior to his current role, Mr. Behrens has held various senior leadership positions within Aon’s Commercial Risk Solutions business and its global technology organization during his more than 10 years with the firm. Prior to that, he held strategy, operations, and technology leadership positions at Marsh and was a management consultant at Accenture. Mr. Behrens is a graduate of the University of Iowa with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting. He lives in Park Ridge with his wife, Linda, and their two children.
Christoph Carus Head of Central Division, Munich Re
Mark Cook Global Chief Information Officer, Marsh
Helen Crooks Chief Data Officer, Lloyd's of London
Helen is the Chief Data Officer for Lloyd's of London and Champion for Data for the London Market within the Target Operating Model Programme.
She has 30 years experience setting data strategy and creating data insight solutions (data warehouses, CRM, customer loyalty systems) across a range of markets including FMCG / Retail, Telecoms, Publishing, Travel and Financial Services.
Helen was the Chief Architect and Technical Director for Dunnhumby, the loyalty service provider for Tesco clubcards, from start-up. Helen was responsible for delivering all of the data solutions for this Global loyalty company, and has subsequently enabled several major European organisations to effectively manage and utilise their customer data.
Helen started at Lloyd’s in August 2015 and is leading developments around Data Governance, AI and Cognitive Intelligence, new data technology and a data literacy programme designed to ensure Lloyd's has skills and expertise for the future.
Mark Esposito SVP & CIO, The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.
Sue Figueredo SVP, Business Insurance Operations, Travelers
Alessandro Iuppa Founder & Principal, Global Insurance Perspectives
Robert Kelly Managing Director & CEO, Steadfast Group Limited
Kevin Kennedy Chief Information Officer, Prudential Financial
Kevin Kennedy is Vice President and Chief Information Officer of various Corporate Centers; inclusive of Law, Compliance, Business Ethics & External Affairs, Global Marketing & Communications, Long-Term Care, Investor Relations, Operational Risk, Audit, and Electronic Records.
Kennedy has more than 25 years of experience leading technology in the Financial Services industry. Prior to joining Prudential, he served as Managing Director and Chief Technology Officer at Jefferies, where he was responsible for the technology supporting the Investment Banking Division’s OneJef platform - the Enterprise Global Desktop that includes the firm’s Customer Relationship Management, Revenue Engine, Compliance and Research.
Kennedy was also Chief Information Officer for the Prudential Bache group and spent many years in various leadership positions at Prudential Securities. In his CIO role, he oversaw the extraction of the commodities business from the Prudential Securities infrastructure following the merger of broker dealers with Wachovia, and the re-platforming of many of the systems allowing Bache to operate as a global business with straight through processing (STP) capabilities. He was also instrumental in developing the trade signal generating platform and databases required for the proper functioning of the Bache Commodities Index.
Kennedy has a B.S. in Computer Science from the City University of New York Brooklyn College.
Mark Knipfer COO, Zurich North America
Mark Knipfer is Chief Operations Officer for Zurich North America, a leading provider of insurance products and services, including workers’ compensation, liability, property, specialty and F&I (finance and insurance) for a number of major industries, such as Construction, Auto Dealers and Technology. It offers life insurance and disability coverage in the United States. Zurich employs approximately 9,000 people in North America. It’s a top-four commercial insurer in the U.S. and has been insuring U.S. businesses for more than 100 years.
In his role as Chief Operations Officer, Mr. Knipfer is responsible for operational functions including information technology, underwriting support, premium audit, lean management, real estate and sourcing. In previous roles, he led Zurich North America’s underwriting support and service team and served as head of strategy.
Before joining Zurich in 2007, Mr. Knipfer was an associate principal at McKinsey & Company in Chicago and an associate in the fixed income division of Salomon Brothers Inc. in New York.
He serves on the board of the Association for Cooperative Operations Research and Development (ACORD), a global, nonprofit organization serving the insurance and related industries.
Mr. Knipfer received a master’s degree in business administration from Stanford University and a bachelor’s degree in accountancy from the University of Illinois, where he graduated with University Honors. He has also received the Illinois CPA Society’s Bronze Medal Award for achievement on the CPA examination.
Dave Matcham CEO, International Underwriting Association of London
Dave Matcham is Chief Executive of the International Underwriting Association of London (IUA). IUA is the market association representing insurance and reinsurance companies writing international business in or through London, outside the Lloyd’s market. In 2014, IUA members wrote circa $30 billion gross premium. Previous to joining IUA at its formation on 31 December 1998, Dave worked for 18 years, many in a senior managerial position, for the Institute of London Underwriters – a long established trade association for marine and aviation insurers in London. ILU merged with LIRMA to form IUA as the sole representative voice for the London company market on 31 December 1998 with David being appointed Director of Operations. David was appointed Chief Executive on 17 March 2005 and joined the IUA Board at that time. David obtained his Associateship of the Chartered Insurance Institute in 1986 and his Fellowship (specialising in Aviation) in 1989. David serves on many market groups on behalf of the company market, notably the London Market Group and is a Director of Xchanging Ins-sure Services (now part of the CSC Group).
Patrick Molineux Managing Director, LIMOSS
Patrick Molineux is the Managing Director of LIMOSS, London Insurance Market Operations and Strategic Sourcing. LIMOSS was established by Lloyd’s of London, the International Underwriting Association (IUA) and Lloyd’s Market Association (LMA) to source and operate the Market Services used to support the London Insurance Market. Patrick previously worked at CSC Computer Sciences Corporation (prior to its merger to create DXC Technology) where he was most recently general manager responsible for CSC’s insurance business in the UK. Over his 20 years with CSC Patrick held roles including running CSC’s global insurance strategy, management consulting, sales and programme management. Prior to CSC, Patrick worked for 10 years in the insurance industry. Patrick is 51 years old, married and lives in Surrey, United Kingdom.
Gray Nester ADS Insurance Business Information Officer/SVP, BB&T
Gray Nester is Business Information Officer for BB&T Insurance Holdings. Since 2004 he has worked closely with the various insurance businesses at BB&T to assist the business in providing efficiency and solutions to managing the distribution of insurance across all channels. Gray’s career has been dedicated to improving the insurance business through technology including active involvement in ACT, AUGIE and NetVu which Gray served on Chairman of the Board. These roles have helped utilize technology for all Agents and improve the partnerships between the carriers and distribution channels.
Robert Rusbuldt President & CEO, IIABA
Robert A. Rusbuldt is President & Chief Executive Officer of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, Inc. (IIABA). He joined the association in May 1986 and was named CEO in April 2001. During his time at IIABA, Rusbuldt earned recognition as one of the leading lobbyists on tax, banking, insurance and financial services issues in Washington, D.C. The Washington Post, The Hill and Roll Call all have named Rusbuldt as one of the “hot,” top lobbyists in Washington. In July 1998, Rusbuldt was named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of IIABA, with management responsibility for the Association’s day-to-day activities on a range of important fronts. His oversight duties ranged from the Association’s government affairs operation, to its for-profit subsidiaries and strategic investments, to IIABA’s technology advances and more. Rusbuldt is a regular guest on Washington’s News Channel 8, an ABC-TV news affiliate, providing political commentary and campaign and election analysis, and he appears regularly on CNN, CNBC, FOX, Bloomberg and other networks and shows to offer expert comment on political, legislative, policy and business issues. Rusbuldt graduated Summa Cum Laude from King’s College in Briarcliff Manor, N.Y. with a degree in History/Political Science. In 1981, Rusbuldt received his Master of Arts in Political Science from American University in Washington, D.C. He was chosen to participate in the Symposium on the Presidency in 1978 and the American Studies Program. Rusbuldt’s tenure in Washington includes five years as Legislative Director for Rep. Carroll Campbell (R-S.C.), where he was responsible for House Ways and Means Committee work. He also was the Legislative Director for the American Insurance Association, representing some of the largest property-casualty insurance companies in the country.
Markus Schmid Head Group Information Technology Board Member, Swiss Re
In his role as Group Information Officer, Markus Schmid runs a transformation program with the goal of globalizing Swiss Re’s IT organization and increasing its productivity. In 2012, he aligned the IT organization with the new Group operating model by creating dedicated IT Units, and introduced a service-based cost management framework for the entire Swiss Re group. From 2005-2007 he was responsible for IT support of Swiss Re’s entire Re/Insurance operations as well as Commercial Insurance. Markus played a crucial role in integrating the former GE Insurance Solutions business into Swiss Re. Markus joined Swiss Re as CIO and Executive Team Member of the Property & Casualty Business Group in 2001. From 1996 to 2000, he worked for Boston Consulting Group, where he ran business models and functional projects in the financial services sector as well as IT value management. He started his career at Accenture. Markus holds a master’s degree in economics and computer science from the University of Zurich.
Dr. Ralf Schneider EVP & Head of Global Operations, Allianz
Dr. Ralf Schneider has been the Group CIO of Allianz since October 2010. Prior to this position he performed the role of a Board Member for IT of Allianz Technology SE (2010 - 2016) and acted as the CIO of Allianz Deutschland AG (2006-2010).
Dr. Schneider has worked in several IT executive positions at Allianz, such as department Head of “Allianz Sales Information Systems” or the division Head of “E-business and Project Controlling Germany” for more than 20 years, always been appointed as the youngest among his peers.
Additionally, Dr. Schneider holds various mandates in different Cyber Security related organizations such as the Cyber Security Sharing & Analytics e.V. (CSSA), the Deutsche Cyber Sicherheitsorganisation (DCSO) and the Digital Society Institute (DSI) of the ESMT in Berlin. Furthermore, he is the vice chairman of the Federal Association of IT users (VOICE - Bundesverband der ITAnwender e.V.), a curator at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT), a senator of the National Academy of Science and Engineering (Acatech), a founding member of the Industrial Data Space e.V., a member of the working group “Shared Services” within the Schmalenbach Society for the Advancement of Research in Business Economics and Business Practice as well as a member of the control circuit of the Security Network Munich (Sicherheitsnetzwerk München).
As a graduate mathematician with a doctorate in computer science, he joined Allianz in 1995.
Christopher Smith EVP & Head of Global Operations, MetLife
Christopher B. Smith is Executive Vice President and Head of Global Operations at MetLife. Smith has more than 25 years of industry expertise, and currently oversees MetLife's core insurance operations, including underwriting, policy administration and claims. Before being selected to lead the Global Operations group, he served as chief of staff to Steven A. Kandarian (Chairman, President, and CEO of MetLife). Smith has also served as Chairman of the Board of the MetLife Foundation. He began his career at MetLife in 1992, has held various senior roles in Group Insurance and Investments, and served as chief enterprise strategy officer.
Simon Squires Senior Operations Lead, XL Catlin, AXA XL
Simon Squires of AXA XL succeeds Regis Delayat of SCOR as Ruschlikon Chairman. Simon has a lot of experience to bring to the role as AXA XL was an early adopter and pioneer of e-Accounting and was the first Insurance Company to go live with Willis in Insurance segment in 2011. Since then Simon has been a passionate public advocate of ACORD messaging and has presented and promoted at numerous events and forums, not only in London but across the Global market. Through his drive for industry and process improvements, he has worked with the Ruschlikon Community to tackle administration problem areas such as the issue of multiple tax schedules and Coinsurance. Those of you who know him will have heard him say ‘it’s not about who has the best spreadsheet ‘. Simon has also been Chairman of Ruschlikon UK for the past seven years, helping to facilitate implementations of ACORD standard messaging across a wide community of brokers, insurers, and reinsurers. On taking the role of chairman Simon said ‘My vision for Ruschlikon is based on four key pillars; Community, Continuous Improvement, Combined Ratio Efficiency, & Collaboration. For the future let’s be curious, let’s be creative, let’s strive to change minds, and continue what we do best; transforming ideas into implementation of processes that enhance client service and reduce operational costs”
Simon originally trained with PWC as a Chartered Accountant and has worked in commercial insurance operations for the last twenty years, 15 of which have been with AXA XL. Simon is currently the UK/ROI Senior Operations Lead for Premium Collections and International. Simon has previously held roles at IBM HUON, implementing insurance systems, RSA, in operations and finance, and PWC, working in London and internationally for insurance and financial services clients. Simon is married to Nancy and they have three children.
James (Jim) Tyo Chief Data Officer, Nationwide
Jim is the enterprise Chief Data Officer for Nationwide. He is responsible for overall strategic vision, planning, execution and management of all activities related to operation of the Enterprise Data Office (EDO) for Nationwide. With the overarching goal of providing trusted data services for business optimization, they own and deliver on the data and analytics strategy by enabling alignment of needs, skills and governance across the lifecycle of solutions through improved data accessibility and analytic capabilities. They are the champions of data as a strategic asset to challenge and improve current products, services and processes. Jim formerly worked at BB&T; one of the largest financial services holding companies in the U.S., where he was their first enterprise CDO, and USAA; a member owned association dedicated to providing financial services to the military community and their families, where he began their first Chief Data Office. Prior to USAA, Jim held senior positions within GE Capital and Key Bank.
Conor Whelan Chief Information Officer, JLT Group
Conor Whelan recently joined global insurance broker JLT as Group CIO. Conor’s objective is to transform the IT function whilst also leading the digital revolution within JLT. Prior to this, Conor has spent the last 5 years transforming the IT capability within TNT Express, a global express parcel distribution company employing 70,000 people across more than 100 countries. Having inherited a highly federated IT function, he worked across the globe to introduce a standard operating model and sourcing model, significantly improving bottom line margins as well as quicker speed to market, improved service maturity and employee engagement. Before joining TNT, Conor spent 5 years as the Group CIO for Wincanton, a pan European logistics company. Conor has also worked for two other global logistics companies in CIO roles in the UK with Tibbett & Britten, following the acquisition by Exel Logistics which allowed him to move into run the EMEA region. Both companies are now owned by DHL. His early career started in a UK based software company where he led both the commercial and sales functions before moving on to become a buyer of these services in management roles within Exel and Wincanton.
Carol Zacharias SVP, Underwriting Counsel, QBE
Carol Zacharias is underwriting counsel to QBE North America, a multinational insurer providing property, casualty and specialty insurance including directors' and officers', employment, professional liability, and errors and omissions insurance. Prior to joining QBE, Carol was Deputy General Counsel to Ace North America, now part of the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies. Ms. Zacharias attended New York University School of Law, where she received a master's degree in corporate law. She has served as Chairman of the American Bar Association Business Law Section's Business Insurance Committee and Vice Chairman of the Professional, Officers' and Directors' Liability Law Committee of the Tort and Insurance Practice Section. She also served as co-chair of the insurance subcommittee of the American Bar Association Litigation Section's Committee on Corporate Counsel. She is a member of the United States Supreme Court bar, the Federal and New Jersey bars, the American Bar Association, and the American Corporate Counsel Association. Ms. Zacharias has been published in a securities law textbook and a variety of periodicals including the Journal of Commerce, National Underwriter, Global Reinsurance, Bank Director, Professional Agent, Journal of Accountancy, John Liner Review, Professional Agent, Insights, BNA's Tax Management & Compensation Planning Journal and Liability Corporate Analyst. She is quoted in various publications, such as Business Insurance and the Wall Street Journal. She is a frequent speaker and taught professional liability at New York's College of Insurance, now part of St. John's University.