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2016 Women to Watch: Lori Goltermann

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Lori Goltermann
CEO for U.S. retail
Aon Risk Solutions
Chicago
Age: 50

As with many high-performing executives, hard work and collaboration have driven Lori Goltermann’s rise to the top ranks of her organization, but she’s also brought her own unique approach and experiences to fuel her success.

An ability to change lanes from medicine to business, from underwriting to broking, and from property/casualty to health care to property/casualty again has given her a breadth of knowledge and experience that benefits all the people she works with in her position as CEO for U.S. retail at Aon Risk Solutions.

A change of direction during her final year at Washington University in St. Louis, where she was planning to be a doctor, put her on a path toward business.

“I loved medicine. However, in my senior year I started taking business classes, and I took a dramatic turn,” Ms. Goltermann said. She looked first at pharmaceutical sales, but through a summer internship at Travelers Cos. Inc. she was exposed to commercial underwriting.

“I loved the combination of client interaction, helping build strategic solutions to complicated issues and the marketing side of the business. I never expected to love insurance as much as I have grown to, but it’s been a great fit,” Ms. Goltermann said.

After five years at Travelers, she joined Aon, where she spent 20 years working in property/casualty lines and then a couple of years running the health and benefits business within Aon’s retail operations.

Her experience in underwriting, along with her ability to work well with people and to see all sides of an issue, have helped her work successfully with both clients and insurers, said Michael J. O’Connor, CEO of Aon Risk Solutions. “Lori brings a very collaborative, thoughtful perspective on how to advocate for our clients, but she translates it in a constructive and thoughtful manner to our carriers,” he said.

In addition, “she’s a very collaborative, supportive colleague. If you look around the firm and the relationships and networks she has across Aon … she’s just very well-received,” Mr. O’Connor said.

Part of that work involves promoting diversity at the firm and mentoring — she likes to mentor at least two colleagues a year, she said. With female colleagues, that also involves mentoring them on work/life balance issues, Ms. Goltermann said.

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