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Women to Watch: Karen M. Clark


Karen M. Clark

Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer

AIR Worldwide Corp.


Age: 49

Karen M. Clark had been an insurance company research associate for one year in 1983 when she began developing a simulation model to estimate property losses from hurricanes. Her original model, unveiled in 1986, became the basis for the AIR hurricane model. The following year, Ms. Clark formed AIR to extend the new technology to estimating losses caused by various natural catastrophes. Today, AIR not only offers models that estimate losses from all major natural catastrophes, it also has developed a terrorism model. In 2001, Ms. Clark was named Woman of the Year by the Assn. of Professional Insurance Women.

Advice to young women: "Most importantly, pick a career that they're passionate about and that they truly enjoy doing. Then know your real strengths and how you can best leverage them. Work hard, do your best and never give up. Women have to juggle a lot of different things, so it also helps to maintain a positive can-do attitude," which is necessary in any industry a woman enters.