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2020 Break Out Awards

It’s unclear in what shape the insurance and risk management sector will emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, but there’s little doubt it is going through change. Even before the coronavirus struck earlier this year, insurance prices were rising, technology was transforming business processes and new risks continued to emerge.

With the onset of the pandemic, huge social and economic changes have been imposed on everyone in the space of weeks, some of which will be transitory, but some will have lasting effects. As we work through the upheaval, business smarts and adaptability will be an even more valuable commodity. Fortunately, many organizations in the sector have those skills in hand.

The 40 honorees selected for the 2020 Business Insurance Break Out Awards represent some of the most talented leaders developing in the industry. 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 types 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 BI editors. After selecting finalists, we contacted references to learn more details about the nominees’ achievements.

In the following pages, you can read edited excerpts of interviews with all the winners and learn how they found their way into the industry, what they find most challenging about working during a pandemic, things they wish they’d known when they were 18 and their top choices for movies and meals — pizza remains a perennial favorite.

Gavin Souter, Editor

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2020 Break Out Award Winners

NORTHEAST SOUTH MIDWEST WEST