7 People on the Move

Everest adds a cyber and a marketing executive; Willis Towers Watson announces three appointments in its West region; and other key announcements.
By: | March 7, 2019 • 5 min read

Winter Appointed to Interstate Restoration Management Role

Interstate Restoration announced the promotion of Yvette Winter to general manager of the company’s northwest region.

Yvette Winter, general manager, Northwest Region, Interstate Restoration

Interstate Restoration is a national, emergency-restoration general contractor based in Fort Worth, Texas that specializes in repairing commercial property.

Winter joined the Seattle office of Interstate Restoration in June 2017 as a national accounts manager and document restoration specialist, bringing with her knowledge and skills honed over more than two decades in the industry. As a general manager, she will oversee emergency response operations, sales and growth opportunities in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Montana; and she will be responsible for more than 200 projects and dozens of employees.

“Yvette prides herself on her people skills and strives to deliver business continuity for her clients,” said Stacy Mazur, CEO of Interstate Restoration. “Her technical expertise is second to none; she recently became a certified hazard identification and risk assessment building inspector.”

Winter is an active member of BOMA (Building Owners and Management Association), WAMOA (Washington Association of Maintenance and Operations Administration), ARMA International (formerly known as the Association of Record Managers) and PLRB (Property & Liability Resource Bureau).

Winter has been recognized for her community volunteer efforts and won a number of national and local marketing awards from the Society for Marketing Professionals. Perhaps most notably, she received the Seattle Mayor’s Award for Outstanding Achievement as a result of her work on behalf of the disabled community. She was also awarded the Seattle King County BOMA HERO Award for her volunteerism.

Nicholas Insua Returns to Anderson Kill

Nicholas M. Insua, a veteran litigator who focuses his practice on insurance recovery litigation and counseling, has rejoined Anderson Kill as a shareholder in the firm’s Newark, New Jersey office.


“We know Nick as a superb litigator, familiar with every nuance of insurance coverage law,” said Robert M. Horkovish, Anderson Kill’s managing shareholder. “We are delighted to welcome him back into the firm.”

Insua represents policyholder clients in catastrophic first-party property damage and business interruption claims, environmental and asbestos claims, and D&O and E&O claims. He has also represented numerous clients on insurance and commercial litigation matters in both state and federal appellate courts.

“With his deep experience in environmental, property damage and professional liability insurance coverage litigation, Nick is a great fit with our New Jersey practice,” added Steven J. Pudell, managing shareholder of Anderson Kill’s Newark office.

Kate Boland and Ayesha West Join Everest

Everest Insurance announced that Kathleen Boland joined their Marketing & Distribution team as Director, Marketing & Distribution, focusing on the Mid-Atlantic region. Boland will be based out of the Everest Insurance Philadelphia office and report to Matt Murray, East Region Leader, Marketing & Distribution.

Murray commented, “We are excited to have Kate join us to strengthen our broker and client relationships in the broader Philadelphia area and throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. We look forward to bringing the full depth and capabilities of Everest to this important geography, especially with our new Philadelphia office opening this year. Kate is a talented and experienced insurance professional who is a valuable addition to the Everest team.”

Boland has more than fifteen years’ industry experience and most recently held the role of Business Development Leader at Zurich North America. She previously held leadership positions at AIG and Chartis. Boland holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Marist College.

Ayesha West, vice president, cyber, Everest

Also adding her talents to the company is Ayesha West as a vice president in the company’s cyber insurance group. She will be responsible for managing the development of the national cyber insurance underwriting team, and will be based in New York reporting to Kevin Sherry, Head of Cyber.

Commenting on the addition, Sherry said, “We are pleased to have Ayesha join our team and excited to have her cultivate and continue to expand Everest’s footprint in this space. I’m confident that with her experience, industry knowledge, and proven leadership skills, she will be a valuable asset to our team, our clients, and our brokers.”

West most recently worked at The Navigators Group as AVP, U.S. Retail, Cyber and Technology lead. Prior to Navigators, she held positions in the cyber insurance field at both AXIS and Chubb. She holds a JD from the Fordham University School of Law and a B.B.A. from the American University in Dubai.

An active and engaged member of numerous professional associations, West serves on the Advisory Board of the John Street Insurance Association, and is a board member of the Eastern Chapter of PLUS in addition to the Women in Cyber Leadership organization. West is also a co-founder, and board member, of the Water Street Club – an insurance-focused diversity association based in New York City.

Willis Towers Watson Appoints Three New Executives

Willis Towers Watson announced three key appointments across its Corporate Risk and Broking segment for its West region in North America.


Linde Hotchkiss will lead regional large account strategy for the West where she will oversee its global client advocate community that drives excellence, consistency and collaboration between global clients throughout North America with a focus on delivering value. Hotchkiss is based in San Diego, CA.

Additionally, the company announced the appointment of Nicole Johnson as Corporate Risk and Broking leader for Phoenix, AZ. Johnson previously served as vice president at Lovitt and Touché where she was responsible for client development and growth strategy.

Nicole Johnson
Corporate Risk & Broking Leader, Phoenix
Willis Towers Watson

As part of its ongoing investment in technology initiatives, the company also announced the creation of a new Tech Center of Excellence for the West Region, which will be led by George Haitsch. As a global client advocate, Haitsch has been instrumental in building connections across the tech community.

“These appointments demonstrate the significant investment and growth we are making across the Western U.S.,” said Alex Littlejohn, Corporate Risk and Broking, U.S. West region lead. “Our innovation in technology, as well as our commitment to driving value and excellence for clients, is key to our success in this region. We are delighted to announce these appointments and look forward to investing further across the West region.”

The R&I Editorial Team can be reached at [email protected]

4 Companies That Rocked It by Treating Injured Workers as Equals; Not Adversaries

The 2018 Teddy Award winners built their programs around people, not claims, and offer proof that a worker-centric approach is a smarter way to operate.
By: | October 30, 2018 • 3 min read

Across the workers’ compensation industry, the concept of a worker advocacy model has been around for a while, but has only seen notable adoption in recent years.

Even among those not adopting a formal advocacy approach, mindsets are shifting. Formerly claims-centric programs are becoming worker-centric and it’s a win all around: better outcomes; greater productivity; safer, healthier employees and a stronger bottom line.


That’s what you’ll see in this month’s issue of Risk & Insurance® when you read the profiles of the four recipients of the 2018 Theodore Roosevelt Workers’ Compensation and Disability Management Award, sponsored by PMA Companies. These four programs put workers front and center in everything they do.

“We were focused on building up a program with an eye on our partner experience. Cost was at the bottom of the list. Doing a better job by our partners was at the top,” said Steve Legg, director of risk management for Starbucks.

Starbucks put claims reporting in the hands of its partners, an exemplary act of trust. The coffee company also put itself in workers’ shoes to identify and remove points of friction.

That led to a call center run by Starbucks’ TPA and a dedicated telephonic case management team so that partners can speak to a live person without the frustration of ‘phone tag’ and unanswered questions.

“We were focused on building up a program with an eye on our partner experience. Cost was at the bottom of the list. Doing a better job by our partners was at the top.” — Steve Legg, director of risk management, Starbucks

Starbucks also implemented direct deposit for lost-time pay, eliminating stressful wait times for injured partners, and allowing them to focus on healing.

For Starbucks, as for all of the 2018 Teddy Award winners, the approach is netting measurable results. With higher partner satisfaction, it has seen a 50 percent decrease in litigation.

Teddy winner Main Line Health (MLH) adopted worker advocacy in a way that goes far beyond claims.

Employees who identify and report safety hazards can take credit for their actions by sending out a formal “Employee Safety Message” to nearly 11,000 mailboxes across the organization.

“The recognition is pretty cool,” said Steve Besack, system director, claims management and workers’ compensation for the health system.

MLH also takes a non-adversarial approach to workers with repeat injuries, seeing them as a resource for identifying areas of improvement.

“When you look at ‘repeat offenders’ in an unconventional way, they’re a great asset to the program, not a liability,” said Mike Miller, manager, workers’ compensation and employee safety for MLH.

Teddy winner Monmouth County, N.J. utilizes high-tech motion capture technology to reduce the chance of placing new hires in jobs that are likely to hurt them.

Monmouth County also adopted numerous wellness initiatives that help workers manage their weight and improve their wellbeing overall.

“You should see the looks on their faces when their cholesterol is down, they’ve lost weight and their blood sugar is better. We’ve had people lose 30 and 40 pounds,” said William McGuane, the county’s manager of benefits and workers’ compensation.


Do these sound like minor program elements? The math says otherwise: Claims severity has plunged from $5.5 million in 2009 to $1.3 million in 2017.

At the University of Pennsylvania, putting workers first means getting out from behind the desk and finding out what each one of them is tasked with, day in, day out — and looking for ways to make each of those tasks safer.

Regular observations across the sprawling campus have resulted in a phenomenal number of process and equipment changes that seem simple on their own, but in combination have created a substantially safer, healthier campus and improved employee morale.

UPenn’s workers’ comp costs, in the seven-digit figures in 2009, have been virtually cut in half.

Risk & Insurance® is proud to honor the work of these four organizations. We hope their stories inspire other organizations to be true partners with the employees they depend on. &

Michelle Kerr is associate editor of Risk & Insurance. She can be reached at [email protected]