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2018 Women to Watch

Posted On: Dec. 3, 2018 12:00 AM CST

2018 Business Insurance Women to Watch

The Business Insurance Women to Watch Award program is evolving as we continue to celebrate the achievements of outstanding female executives in the insurance and risk management sector.

This year, we have added the Women to Watch Inspiration Award to recognize the work of an individual whose accomplishments establish her as a role model for younger women in the industry.

While insurance has been male-dominated for years, change is gradually coming as more women take senior positions at their firms. It is the female pioneers in the sector who inspire the future women leaders of the industry.

The first Women to Watch Inspiration Award is presented to Pamela Newman, chairman of the Newman Team at Aon, and a strategic adviser to Aon PLC, in recognition of her extraordinary achievements in the brokerage world (see related story).

In addition, while the Women to Watch Awards are in their 13th year, 2018 also marks the second year of the Women to Watch EMEA awards.

Since the program’s inception, we have had many nominations and honorees from Europe, the Middle East and Africa, so last year we established a separate awards program and recognition event to honor winners in the region. Profiles of our EMEA honorees begin here.

All of the 2018 Women to Watch were selected through a rigorous nomination process. We began accepting nominations earlier this year — where we sought extensive information on nominees’ expertise, leadership qualities and achievements — and the hundreds of nominations were reviewed by a panel of senior Business Insurance staff. After selecting finalists, we reviewed and spoke with references before naming the 15 winners from EMEA and 30 winners from North America and the rest of the world.

We hope you enjoy reading their stories.

Gavin Souter, editor


Mahshameen Ahmad
Crum & Forster Holdings Corp.

Meg Allwein
Assurex Global Corp.

Allison Barrett
Willis Towers Watson PLC

Kelley Bernal

Nancy Bewlay
Axa XL

Sandra Bigglestone
Vermont Department of Financial Regulation

Nina Boone

Crystal Brown
The Doctor’s Co.

Andrea Buhl
Sedgwick Claims Management Services Inc.

Rebecca Cady
Children’s National Medical Center

Ellen Charnley
Marsh Captive Solutions

Laura F. Coppola
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty

Nora Deveau
Arch Insurance Group Inc.

Lainie Dorneker
Ironshore Inc.

Jessica Getman
Brown & Brown Northwest Insurance

Susan Gildea
Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Co.

Mona Hanna
Michelman & Robinson LLP

Kathy Kranz
Pinnacol Assurance

Aquanda Lewis
One Call Care Management

Deirdre Martin
American International Group Inc.

Carolyn Polikoff
Woodruff Sawyer

Risa Ryan
Munich Reinsurance America Inc.

Rekha Schipper
Tangram Insurance Services

Sarah Sherman
JLT Specialty USA

Mary Beth Smykowski
Masco Corp.

Sonja Teague

Liz Walker
Groupon Inc.

Jeanette Ward
Texas Mutual Insurance Co.

Cate Whiddon

Karen Williams
Krauter & Co.


Olivia Cooper
Willis Towers Watson PLC

Sarah De Rocco
Marsh SpA

Kirsten Early
Broadspire UK

Catherine French
Marsh Ltd.

Debbie Hobbs
EmergIn Risk

Gladys Karuri
Britam Holdings Ltd.

Jane Kielty

Jacqueline Legrand

Ewa Machlarz
Travelers Insurance Co. Ltd.

Delphine Traoré Maïdou
Allianz Africa

Jennifer Martin
Pen Underwriting Ltd.

Sima Ruparelia
AIG Europe Ltd.

Leonora Siccardi
Aon Reinsurance Solutions

Kadidja Sinz
Liberty Specialty Markets

Hélène Stanway
Axa XL