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Director of Stamping Office
Surplus Lines Assn. of California
Just before joining the Stamping Office in July 2003, Joy Erven Laughery worked for ACE Westchester Specialty Group as an underwriting and marketing supervisor. She got her start in the industry as an assistant broker at Commodore Insurance Services and at Swett & Crawford Group between 1992 and 1996. She then went to Colemont Insurance Group Inc. as an associate broker and in 1999, she became an assistant vp at Integrated Risk Solutions Inc. before joining ACE in 2001. In addition to her current position, she also serves as the Surplus Lines Assn. of California’s chief financial officer and chief operating officer.
Q: If you had the ability to change one thing about the industry what would it be?
A: "I would like to see more educational seminars on ethics and public relations. Many aspects of the insurance industry are insular, and not known to anyone outside of a small circle. Through education, the industry can improve professional conduct and shed light on insurance for consumers and business alike."
Q: What advice would you give young women entering the industry today?
A: "Women entering insurance need a strong work ethic and professional attitude because they are entering an established industry providing tremendous opportunities. My personal philosophy is to live in the now, excel at the job at hand, gain as much experience as possible, and enjoy the challenges as they come…because they will."
Q: Who has had the greatest influence on your career and why?
A: "I had many people I admired and respected throughout my career. The person who stands out most is Nanci Rakestraw, an assistant vice president for ACE USA. She was a great influence and helped me recognize the traits I would need to rise in the ranks as she had done. Some of her strongest traits are her work ethic, job knowledge, positive attitude and approachability. Most importantly she taught me to respect others regardless of title."
Business Insurance's report on "Women to Watch" is our attempt to identify some of the women who are leading change in commercial insurance, risk management, employee benefits and related fields.