8 People on the Move

Newfront Insurance adds a head of agribusiness, Distinguished Programs hires two executives; all of this and more in this edition of People on the Move. 
By: | February 21, 2020

Carlton Fields Hires Huhnsik Chung, Shareholder

Huhnsik Chung, shareholder, Carlton Fields

Carlton Fields announced the hire of Huhnsik Chung as shareholder in the firm’s New York office.

Chung will serve as co-chair of Carlton Fields’ Fintech and Property and Casualty Insurance Regulatory and Transactional Practice Group.

Chung was previously a partner at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, and previously chaired the North America Insurance practice at Baker McKenzie.

Chung’s appointment is in an effort to further its strategic expansion of its insurance practice. The Fintech and Property and Casualty Insurance Regulatory and Transactional Practice offers legal, regulatory, compliance, fintech and blockchain platform development services.

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“I am indeed excited to join one of the profession’s great insurance practices,” said Chung. “Carlton Fields is a firm that truly walks the walk, with one of the largest insurance-dedicated groups in the country. I look forward to serving a broad range of clients on a variety of evolving matters.”

Chung has over 30 years of experience, including that in blockchain and digital asset development and deployment in his representation of accelerators, exchanges, sponsors, investors, developers, and banks with a focus in Asia and Bermuda.

Everest Insurance Adds Four to E&S Casualty Excess Group

Everest Insurance added four new underwriters within the E&S Casualty Excess group. The new hires include: Kelly Doyle, Christopher Marino, Mark Thompson and Sean McPhillips.

• Christopher Marino joins Everest as a senior underwriter in New York and New Jersey. Marino served most recently as an excess casualty underwriter at Crum & Forster. Prior to that, he spent ten years at AIG. He holds a CRIS designation.

• Kelly Doyle joins Everest as a senior underwriter in the company’s Chicago office. Most recently, Doyle worked at Allianz Global and Corporate Specialty as a corporate accounts liability underwriting specialist. Prior to that, she served as a senior underwriter at StarStone/Enstar Group.

• Mark Thompson joins Everest as an underwriter based in the company’s Los Angeles office. Most recently, he worked as an account executive at CoverX Specialty, underwriting excess and specialty insurance accounts. He holds a CPCU and ARe designation.

• Sean McPhillips joins Everest as an associate underwriter, based in New York City. He most recently worked at RT Specialty as a broker assistant. McPhillips holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from SUNY Geneseo.

“The E&S Casualty Excess team at Everest Insurance® continues to add leading underwriting talent to support our growing portfolio and to ensure we are properly resourced to meet the demand from our trading partners. We are committed to providing our clients and brokers with superior service and insurance solutions,” said Donna Pruett, vice president and national leader, E&S Casualty Excess.

“Kelly, Christopher, Mark and Sean, with their knowledge and experience in E&S Casualty underwriting, will be instrumental to our ongoing growth and success. We are excited to have them join the team.”

“Our National E&S Excess team continues to attract top talent.” commented Eric Koppang, head of E&S Casualty.

“We are thrilled to have them continue to enhance a solution-based culture in this dynamic marketplace with the addition of this leading talent.”

Distinguished Programs Promotes Brandon Mercier and Hires Erick Schmitt

Brandon Mercier, regional sales executive, southeastern U.S., Distinguished Programs

Erick Schmitt, sales executive, Texas and Omaha, Distinguished Programs

Distinguished Programs, a national insurance program manager, promoted Brandon Mercier to regional sales executive for the southeastern U.S. Mercier most recently served as a sales executive for Distinguished Programs Specialty division.

“Brandon’s strong attention to detail and understanding of the insurance market has made him a successful contributor to Distinguished Programs’ growth, and we believe he’ll continue to impress in this new role,” noted Kurt Meister, senior vice president of business development at Distinguished Programs.

In this role, Mercier will lead sales for all of Distinguished Programs’ insurance products across the Southeast.

“Brandon is a valuable member of our team and a pleasure to work with, and his track record in successful sales demonstrates the agents and brokers he works with feel the same.

Mercier joined Distinguished Programs in 2016. Prior to that, he worked for Philadelphia Insurance Companies, where he began as an underwriter in 2009 and later served as a senior marketing representative. He holds a Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) designation.

Erick Schmitt has also been hired as a sales executive for Texas and Oklahoma. Schmitt has nearly 16 years of industry experience to his new executive role at Distinguished Programs.

“Adding an experienced insurance pro with such a strong track record and a history of positive results is sure to bolster the Distinguished executive sales staff,” said Meister.

“Erick’s wealth of knowledge and managerial experience will add to the strength of our sales team as we continue to expand access to our insurance products and services across the U.S.”

Schmitt will be responsible for sales of the full range of products and services available at Distinguished Programs.

Prior to joining Distinguished Programs, Schmitt spent time at Markel Specialty, AIG and Nationwide.

Newfront Insurance Adds a Principal and Head of Agribusiness

Newfront Insurance appointed Seth Word as principal and head of agribusiness.

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Prior to Newfront, Word was a pioneer in California’s cannabis insurance industry. He founded Cultivate Insurance Services, which focuses on cannabis and agribusiness risk management. He will lead all aspects of cannabis, agriculture and horticulture coverage at Newfront.

“I love working with farmers and cannabis cultivators because I’m drawn to hardworking dreamers who appreciate a hands-on approach,” says Word. “Businesses of all sizes require more personalized service from their brokers now than ever before, and Newfront is set up to equip brokers to spend more time with their clients and less time doing administrative work.”

Anna Beach, chief insurance officer commented on the appointment: “Seth offers a demonstrated record of helping cannabis and agriculture clients obtain smart insurance coverage and minimize risk in a new and uncertain industry…We believe his experience and expertise will be of immense value to the clients we serve.” &

Emily Spennato is a former staff writer with Risk & Insurance.

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