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There have been many pivotal moments in Jenna Kirkpatrick Howard’s 23-year insurance career, which she largely attributes to the people who have helped guide her along the way.
“Watching other people’s fingerprints all over your career, all those points of advice from people that helped steer me in the moment or redirected me. I’m most proud of when I am hopefully doing that for someone else,” she said.
A “crazy person who actually studied mathematics and looked at a career as an actuary,” Ms. Kirkpatrick Howard majored in risk management and insurance at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte. From there she took an internship at Transamerica Re but quickly realized actuarial work wasn’t for her.
She then started working as a technical assistant in private equity for a North Carolina regional brokerage after cold calling a manager and asking for a job. Twelve years ago, she joined Lockton as a producer and has since worked in several operational functions and on a variety of complex risks, including government entities, construction, media, real estate and nonprofits.
She said she loves going into different organizations and learning about what makes them tick.
“You’re meeting people that want this business or organization to succeed, and you’re just making sure that they stay on that path and helping to fill those potential areas of concern,” she said. “That makes it really interesting every day.”
Ms. Kirkpatrick Howard said she also enjoys work that “reaches beyond her desk” including serving as an executive sponsor on several Lockton steering committees and on the executive committee for the Northeast Series of Lockton.
Karen Mercer, senior vice president and treasurer for AARP and a client of Ms. Kirkpatrick Howard, said she’s been invaluable in helping the organization overcome significant challenges, including a recent pricing issue on a cyber insurance renewal.
“She is just an outstanding leader in her firm and stands out as somebody who is really, really good at what she does,” Ms. Mercer said.