Linda S. Downs, a Brown & Brown regional executive vice president, has been promoted to the newly formed position of executive vice president for leadership development. She will be responsible for Brown & Brown’s Benefits and Compensation Department, Quality Control Division and Security Committee, as well as the new Leadership Recruitment, Recognition and Development team, responsible for the acculturation and evaluation of current and future leaders. Downs will continue to be responsible for the Program Business Units in Tampa, Fla. and St. Louis.
Downs joined Brown & Brown in 1980, when she established and built from scratch an Orlando, Fla., retail insurance operation, which subsequently became an $11 million profit center. She has been the leader responsible for the development of that office, and has led other company operations to be highly efficient and profitable.
As regional executive vice president, Downs was responsible for retail operations in Georgia, Missouri, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia, and program business units in Tampa and St. Louis.
Before joining Brown & Brown, Downs was with Travelers Insurance Co. as a commercial lines underwriter and senior account analyst.
Linda J. Aguilar, Frederick E. Ferguson, John M. Jacobs, Timothy A. Maddox and C. David Thomas have been elected to the First Surety Corp. Board of Directors. Jacobs Financial Group Inc. of Charleston, W.Va. recently completed corporate filings to change the name of West Virginia Fire & Casualty Co., its recently acquired insurance subsidiary, to First Surety Corp.
Aguilar is a retired bank executive and a resident of Ansted, W.Va. Ferguson is a retired coal executive and a resident of Oak Hill, W.Va. Jacobs, of Charleston, is a SEC registered Investment Advisor, and is also chairman and president of Jacobs Financial Group. Maddox is president of Silverstein & Maddox Inc., a Charleston insurance agency and resides in Charleston. Thomas, also a Charleston resident, is vice president of the George H. Friedlander Co. in Charleston.
Adam S. Barker has been named senior consultant and practice leader in Charlotte, N.C., for Findley Davies of Toledo, Ohio, responsible for health and group benefits in North Carolina and South Carolina.
Barker was formerly president and founder of Ascendant Healthcare Management LLC, where for nearly five years he consulted to a portfolio of Fortune 500 clients. He represented financial services, aerospace and wholesale distribution industries.
For six years, Barker was with FleetBoston Financial and Cookson America, both in Providence, R.I., in various employee benefit management roles.
Reed Mattingly has been named chief operating officer and executive vice president of the Florida-based eAutoclaims Inc., a provider of managed collision repair services and insurance claims processing technology
Mattingly was formerly executive vice president of sales and marketing, responsible for negotiating many of the company’s largest contracts. He played a significant roll in the relationship EACC has with ADP.
Mattingly has been with eAutoclaims since February 1998, and was with the predecessor company, Premier Express Claims, for two years.
Eric Schake joined Willis Group Holdings Ltd. as executive vice president, real estate practice. He will lead client development efforts for Willis’ Real Estate and Hospitality Practice. He is based in Dallas, with offices there and in Nashville, Tenn. Schake specializes in risk financing and transfer programs for large domestic and multinational clients.
Formerly at Marsh, Schake joins Willis with more than 17 years of industry experience. At Marsh, he was a managing director and head of U.S. industry practices, as well as leader of the North American real estate practice.
Thomas Zacharopoulos has joined Integro’s newly established Atlanta office as managing principal. He will lead the management the risk practice for Integro’s Southeast operations and Integro’s national Management Risk Practice.
Zacharopoulos has more than 18 years financial, professional and merger-related insurance experience. He most recently served as vice chairman and national client development leader for Marsh’s FINPRO Practice and was responsible for its operations in the southeast. Prior to joining Marsh in 1994, Zacharopoulos held senior positions within National Union Fire Insurance Co., a subsidiary of AIG.
David E. Haden and Paul Prunty have been appointed to the AccessWV Board of Directors. The announcement was made by West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III.
Haden began an insurance career in 1972. He sells life and health insurance under the name iSource LLC and is based in Charleston. Haden succeeds Jim Roberts who resigned in 2005.
Prunty resides in Fairmont in Marion County. He succeeds Gail Foley, who resigned in 2005. Prunty is retired and previously served 11 terms in the West Virginia House of Delegates.
The board oversees access to health insurance to medically eligible West Virginians unable to obtain coverage in the regular health insurance market.
Scott Whipp joined Guy Carpenter & Co.’s professional liability specialty practice as a managing director to lead its medical malpractice group. In addition, Michael Bleisnick joined the firm’s retrocessional specialty practice as a managing director. Whipp will be based in San Francisco, Bleisnick in New York.
Whipp was the Facultative Healthcare practice leader and vice president of the casualty facultative department at General Reinsurance.
Prior to joining Guy Carpenter, Bleisnick was executive vice president of the global specialty department of PXRE Reinsurance Co. before joining Guy Carpenter.