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The rising industry stars that we honor with the 2021 Business Insurance Break Out Awards not only adapted to a new way of working during the coronavirus pandemic but found ways to excel amid the challenging conditions.
Making use of technology to stay in touch with colleagues and provide clients with enhanced services will likely outlast lockdown restrictions, and the future leaders of the industry will no doubt find many other ways to make use of innovations that were brought into their own by the circumstances of the past year.
The 40 honorees selected for the awards program represent some of the most talented leaders emerging 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 interviews with all of this year’s winners and learn their top tips for working remotely, advice on navigating the hard market and ideas on attracting more young people into the industry, among other things. On the lighter side, you can also learn about their new hobbies, favorite meals and all-time top movies — “The Shawshank Redemption” and various “Star Wars” episodes appear to have been lockdown hits.
Gavin Souter, Editor