Introducing the 2023 Risk All Stars

The 2023 Risk All Stars demonstrate that human beings gifted with broad enough shoulders can make all the difference in a risk management program.
By: | July 14, 2023

Insurance professionals are familiar with the word “capacity.”

In its most common usage within the industry, it refers to the extent to which an underwriting firm is willing or able to use its capital to assume risk from a second party — for a price.

As we honor our 2023 Risk All Stars, let’s meditate on another use for the word. In this case, it describes the amount of emotional, mental and psychic resources risk management professionals are able to employ in building, maintaining and protecting risk management programs that benefit their organizations.

It can’t be easy to be the person — sometimes an army of one — who sits at a table or on a teleconference call and tells their colleagues, in effect, “The way you/we have been going about things isn’t working. We need to make some big changes, and it’s going to involve all of us doing a lot more work.”

Who among us would look forward to delivering that message? Who among us has the capacity to not only deliver that message but also follow through on it, setting up protocols and processes, fighting to get the resources for them and staying in the saddle long enough to see those changes implemented?

Here’s what nominator Kristy Sands of Gallagher Bassett wrote about Sodexo’s Megan Angus, describing her work in managing California cumulative trauma claims: “She needed to create a strategy that was structured, regulated and provided stability for both her team’s management and the injured workers, but she also needed to prioritize flexibility.

“Each claim would have its unique factors, including the worker’s career and injury history, their current work status and more,” Sands continued.

Here’s what nominator Mike James, director of cybersecurity and resilience for Colorado-based Ent Credit Union, had to say about Jason Piet, that company’s vice president of risk management: “Jason’s biggest contribution was the founding of a governance, risk and compliance enterprise program. As part of that solution, Jason brought in a suite of software (Integrated GRC) as a single source-of-truth repository. This huge undertaking has absolutely changed the way our institution identifies, manages and mitigates risk.”

James credited Piet with creating a program (and hiring the staff to run it) that has made all the difference.

Angus, Piet and every other member of this 2023 class of Risk All Stars displays capacity — and loads of it. They take on the big challenges, sometimes standing alone against multitudes. To conjoin two insurance phrases: They are examples of irreplaceable capacity. &

The 2023 Risk All Stars

Shirley Forer, VP, Construction Risk Management, The Related Companies

Mehb Khoja, Chief Actuary, BCS Financial

Megan Angus, Western Senior Claims Manager, Sodexo

Kara Sepulveda, Senior Corporate Risk Manager, Lithia

Clayton Matthews, Claims Director, Oakbridge Insurance

Justin Kollinger, Senior Risk Management Consultant, United Educators

Sally Kucharczyck, Leave Manager, Occupational Medical Initiatives, PepsiCo

Scott Ritto, VP, Risk Management, Kilroy Realty

JoAnn Pickel, Director of Operations, Pacesetter Claims Service

Olga Collins, CEO, Worldwide Broker Network

Ashley Arvin, Safety Specialist, WC Administrator, Carhartt

Randy Jouben, Risk Manager, Fairfax County, Va.

Jason Piet, Vice President, Risk Management, Ent Credit Union

Christy Kaufman, Vice President, Risk Management and Insurance, Zillow

Steven Stoeger-Moore, President, Districts Mutual Ins. And Risk Management Services

Dan Reynolds is editor-in-chief of Risk & Insurance. He can be reached at [email protected].

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