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2019 Break Out Awards

Business Insurance 2019 Break Out Awards

In the insurance industry’s battle for talent, there are plenty of incumbents to fight over.

Companies from across the sector are benefiting from the innovation and hard work of numerous young managers and executives who are making their mark in established and newer organizations and disciplines.

The 40 honorees selected for the 2019 Business Insurance Break Out Awards represent some of the most promising individuals working in insurance and risk management and are set to take on key leadership positions in the industry.

Established in 2017 to succeed our 40 Under 40 program, the Break Out Awards highlight the achievements of up-and-coming professionals in an industry facing significant demographic challenges.

To be eligible for the award, nominees must work in commercial insurance or related sectors and cannot have worked in the field for more than 15 years.

To maintain diversity in geography and type of organization, the honorees are grouped in four regions of the United States: Northeast, South, Midwest and West.

All the nominations — which highlighted the nominees’ client-service skills, expertise and leadership qualities — were reviewed by Business Insurance editors. After selecting finalists, we contacted references to learn more details about the nominees’ achievements.

The honorees come from a diverse set of backgrounds with some knowing they wanted to pursue a career in insurance at college and others coming to the sector after beginning careers in other fields. All have interesting stories to tell about their careers so far and where they think the industry is headed.

In the following pages, you can read edited excerpts of interviews with all the winners.

The awards will be presented at regional events this month in New York, Chicago and San Francisco.



Bryan Berkman
Marsh LLC

Patrick Bousfield
Capsicum Reinsurance Brokers LLP

Adam Budesheim
McCarter & English LLP

Lael Chappell
Attune Insurance Services LLC

Michelle Chia
Zurich North America

Peter Johnson
Spring Consulting Group LLC, a unit of Alera Group

Eliza Lopez
FM Global

Matthew Roy
Everest Insurance, a unit of Everest Re Group Ltd.

Zachary Vollmer
Victor O. Schinnerer & Co. Inc., a unit of Victor Insurance Holdings

Haytham Zohny
Travelers Cos. Inc.


Lacy Benson
Marsh LLC

Miles Eibe
Crawford & Co.

Megan Fletcher
Axa XL, a unit of Axa SA

Leland Jones IV
Wiley Rein LLP

Teah Lupton
CNA Financial Corp.

Matt Meyer
Risk Placement Services Inc., a unit of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

Justin M. Reese IV
Hub International Ltd.

Kyle Schielack
Higginbotham Insurance Group Inc.

Starr Taybron
IAT Insurance Group Inc.

Berri Willis
Burns & Wilcox Ltd., a unit of H.W. Kaufman Financial Group Inc.


Kaileigh Bowe
Highland Insurance Solutions LLC, a unit of WNC Insurance Services Inc.

Jonathan Charak
Zurich North America

Lisa Hamer
Marsh LLC

Nicole Jolley
Church Mutual Insurance Co.

Christina Koppang
Travelers Cos. Inc.

Kimberly Lacker
CNA Financial Corp.

Christopher Mowery
Alliant Insurance Services Inc.

Minda Rossman
Origami Risk LLC

Sydney Sandock
Lockton Cos. LLC

Bryant Steele
Burns & Wilcox Ltd., a unit of H.W. Kaufman Financial Group Inc.


Tara Acton
CenturyLink Inc.

Brian Davidian
R-T Specialty LLC, a unit of Ryan Specialty Group LLC

Stephanie Dunstan
Arch Insurance Group Inc.

Michael Furlong
Indio Technologies Inc.

Robby Horner
International Catastrophe Insurance Managers LLC, a unit of Victor
Insurance Holdings

Nick Kuchulis
Brown & Riding Insurance Services Inc.

Justin M. Lehtonen
Worldwide Facilities LLC

James Martinez
Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

Jennifer Polignoni
Alliant Insurance Services Inc.

Sarah Wander
Everest Insurance, a unit of Everest Re Group Ltd.