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2017 Women to Watch: Heather Batchelor

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Heather Batchelor
Chief underwriting officer, business insurance (Europe)
Travelers Cos. Inc.
London

Whether it’s in her professional or personal life, Heather Batchelor relies on collaboration to get the best results.

With nearly 30 years in the insurance industry, Ms. Batchelor, chief underwriting officer of business insurance (Europe) for Travelers Co. Inc., is one of the founding members of the insurer’s European Women’s Diversity Network and a member of its leadership committee. The network, established in 2014, is responsible for promoting and supporting women at Travelers.

“I’ve definitely taken a lot from working with others in our network,” she said. “It’s an opportunity to share experiences and explore ways you can work through challenging times in your life.” 

Ms. Batchelor understands challenges and is able to work with people to achieve the best outcome. Early in her career, she said, Martin Hudson, the general manger of St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Co., which would later merge with Travelers, was a great inspiration to her.

“He was somebody who really changed how I thought about challenges and problems, and to think about different ways to approach them,” she said. “By working with others, you can tackle almost any problem that’s thrown at you.” 

This talent came in handy when her daughter’s school was going to be closed while she was in her final year. “I had an opportunity to work with the parent group to rescue the school and get it back on its feet,” she said. “It was a great example of people from all different walks of life coming together and doing what we felt was the right thing ... for our children.” 

Michael Lawton, vice president of business insurance for Travelers Europe, said Ms. Batchelor “is an incredibly talented individual and a great asset to our company.”

“She has extensive industry experience, excellent technical knowledge, and her passion for helping others and doing the right thing are second to none,” Mr. Lawton said in an email.

Ms. Batchelor and her husband are recent “empty nesters,” and she is looking forward to traveling and playing cello more regularly. “I enjoy music. I was a cellist,” she said.

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