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2019 Women to Watch: Jennifer Torneden

Posted On: Dec. 2, 2019 12:00 AM CST

Jennifer Torneden

Jennifer Torneden
Senior vice president, head of distribution and broker partnerships
New York
Age: 46

Jennifer Torneden, senior vice president and head of distribution and broker partnerships at Aon PLC, grew up in a family that was “very much about building strong women,” and she has devoted considerable energy to mentoring and sponsoring others.

During the more than 16 years she spent at units of Zurich Insurance Group Ltd., where she rose to the position of senior vice president and regional sales director, Ms. Torneden co-founded and sponsored three employee resource groups, which she said are “now pretty common” but were not at the time: the Emerging LeaderZ, African Ancestry Alliance and PrideZ groups.

She also serves on Aon’s diversity and inclusion board.

Ms. Torneden does not restrict her efforts to adults. She is a Girl Scout leader at the United Nations International School in New York, where her 12-year-old daughter Isabella is a student, and has worked with the group on issues including body image.

Ms. Torneden co-parents Isabella with her ex-husband, who lives just 10 blocks away.

Ms. Torneden describes herself as “definitely energetic, positive and someone who loves developing people. It’s a great joy for me when I see somebody able to develop themselves,” she said.

“I have a very global background,” said Ms. Torneden. Her father worked for a global retailer, and she was born in Brussels and spent time in Japan before moving to the United States as a child.

After graduating from George Mason University with a Bachelor of Science degree in finance, she worked at Aon and Arthur Andersen Business Consulting before moving to Zurich Insurance, where her tenure included a six-year period in Zurich, before returning to Aon.

Kip Kelley, Chicago-based CEO of Aon Affinity, who has known Ms. Torneden for more than 25 years, said Aon brought her back to the company three years ago to help organize its independent agent and brokers’ distribution network.

“She’s done a fantastic job, and our network of agents and brokers has grown dramatically,” Mr. Kelley said.

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