8 People on the Move

Willis Re announces a new Health Practice leader and IOA grows it's Western region presence; all of this and more in this edition of People on the Move. 
By: | April 1, 2020

Willis Re Announces a New Health Practice Leader

Willis Re, the reinsurance business of Willis Towers Watson, announced the appointment of Dan Melanson to senior vice president and Health Practice leader.

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Melanson will serve on the Life, Accident and Health (LAH) senior management team and be responsible for creating and executing strategies to grow the Willis Re LAH business. 

The appointment is effective immediately. He will report to Rob Fast, executive vice president and LAH segment leader.

Melanson has nearly 30 years of health care industry experience. Most recently, he served as managing director in the Health Care practice at Guy Carpenter. He also previously held a number of senior roles, including leadership positions with One Beacon and RBS/HM Insurance. 

“Willis Re continues to grow its talent base and expertise by strategically adding key leaders throughout the organization. Dan brings great talent and has the values and team-based approach that are great complements to Willis Re’s growing team of experienced leaders,” Fast said.  

Commenting on the appointment, Jim Bradshaw, chief executive officer of Willis Re North America, said, “We are delighted to welcome Dan to the team.

“With his extensive experience, expertise and leadership skills, he will be an invaluable asset as we realize our growth ambitions and continue to bolster our footprint and client offering.”

Insurance Office of America Grows Its Western Presence

Paul Carroll, employee benefits services division, Insurance Office of America

Insurance Office of America is growing its presence in the Las Vegas marketplace by adding insurance industry veterans Paul Carroll and Jeri Ballew to its employee benefits services division.

Carroll founded The Westek Group, which specializes in the design, implementation, and administration of employee benefit plans, where he served as president alongside Ballew, who served as vice president. Both bring over 20 years of employee benefits experience to IOA.

“We are fortunate to have Paul and Jeri join our expert advisors on the employee benefits team as they continue to provide the best service possible to our customers and partners,” commented Chris Labrecque, president of IOA’s employee benefits services division.

“Because IOA is the largest independent agency in Nevada, Jeri and I now have the ability to provide new resources and unmatched services to our clients,” said Carroll. “We’re honored to have the opportunity to join an organization that believes in social responsibility and corporate philanthropy.”

“We are extremely pleased to have both Paul and Jeri join our Las Vegas office. They bring the knowledge, enthusiasm, and expert care that our clients seek,” said IOA Western Region President John Tenuto.

In addition to Carroll and Ballew, insurance industry veteran Steve Miller has been appointed to lead the mobility and innovation group. He will be based in Pleasanton, California.

“We are excited to have a professional of Steve’s caliber join the IOA family,” said Tenuto. “His deep commitment to his clients and community soundly align with our mission and vision.”

Before joining IOA, Miller served as vice president at McGriff Insurance Services. He has 15 years of industry experience. 

A pioneer in the autonomous vehicle arena, Steve’s expertise covers the gamut from delivery robots to semi trucks. 

“Steve brings a deep level of experience to our western region team. He’s an industry veteran with the knowledge needed to help our clients strengthen their insurance programs in meaningful and impactful ways,” said IOA chairman and chief executive officer Heath Ritenour.

Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty Announces Three Appointments 

Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty has announced Ali Shahkarami as its first chief data officer. In this newly created position, Shahkarami will be responsible for the development and the delivery of AGCS data strategy and will report directly to chief operating officer Bettina Dietsche.

Shahkarami will focus on aligning various data initiatives, tools and investments with AGCS’s business and data strategy as well as Allianz Group’s data strategy. The AGCS Data Solutions & Architecture team will report to him. 

Shahkarami joined AGCS in 2012 as head of Catastrophe Risk Research where he was responsible for research and development activities to capture risks of man-made and natural catastrophes. 

Shahkarami has held various positions as risk modeler and obtained a PhD in Structural Engineering from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.

Alessandro Carriglio, strategy officer, Underwriting Portfolio Management of the Americas, Financial Lines North America, AGCS

Peter Kiernan, head of North American Reinsurance, ART division, AGCS

This month, the insurance carrier has also announced the appointment of Alessandro Carriglio to strategy officer of Underwriting Portfolio Management of the Americas, Financial Lines North America.

Carriglio will be based in New York City and report to Paul Schiavone, Regional Head of Financial Lines North America and Regional Head of Corporate Long Tail Lines and Allianz Risk Transfer (ART).

Carriglio most recently held the position of Deputy Regional Head of MLC Financial Lines, North America & Regional Head of Financial Lines, South America.

“Alessandro is an integral part of the Financial Lines team. This well-deserved promotion is testament to his dedication and expertise helping AGCS clients across the globe meet their risk management needs,” said Schiavone.

In addition, Peter Kiernan has also joined AGCS as head of North American Reinsurance in its Allianz Risk Transfer (ART) division.

Kiernan will be based in Bermuda. He most recently held the position of chief underwriting officer and president of Axis Re Bermuda.

“We are delighted to welcome Pete to the team. He brings a wealth of portfolio management, underwriting and relationship management experience, which will be instrumental to supporting our North American ART clients and expanding our business in the region,” said ART chief underwriting officer Richard Boyd.

Hi Marley Welcomes Dan Keenan as Head of Growth

Hi Marley, software provider offering the first AI-enabled conversation platform made specifically for the insurance industry, announced industry veteran Dan Keenan has joined the company as its new head of growth. 

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Keenan has decades of experience leading insurance industry sales. 

“I’m thrilled to be in the insurance space, supporting so many clients and friends with whom I’ve worked closely over many years,” commented Keenan. “We’re on a mission to find ways to make our customers successful. This is the best part of the job.”

Most recently, he served as chief revenue officer for Sphera. Prior to that, he spent many years at CCC Information Services, a leading provider of data, analytics, and software for the auto insurance, financial services and automotive industries. 

“Dan’s intimate knowledge of the insurance industry, and his posture of wanting to come alongside and help — that’s an incredible combination,” said Mike Greene, chief executive officer, Hi Marley.

“It’s no surprise he’s built long-standing relationships of deep trust.”

Jessica Niehaus Joins Assurance Agency

Jessica Niehaus, vice president, real estate practice, Assurance Agency

National insurance brokerage Assurance announced that Jessica Niehaus joined the agency as vice president in its real estate practice.

Niehaus will bring an extensive legal and real estate insurance background, primarily focusing efforts on providing in-depth coverage analysis, identification and management of risk exposures, and building tailor-made programs to meet client goals and objectives.

“Jessica’s combined legal background and real estate expertise brings a new element of specialized service to the real estate practice at Assurance,” said Michael Alberico, senior vice president, construction and real estate practice leader at Assurance.

“Not only is Jessica analytical, but she’s creative and we’re looking forward to witnessing her in action,” said Alberico.

Niehaus practiced law in Chicago prior to joining Assurance. She holds a Juris Doctor from DePaul University – College of Law as well as a CLCS designation. &

Emily Spennato is a staff writer with Risk & Insurance. She can be reached at [email protected]

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