October 4, 2010

Salt Lake City-based The Buckner Co. named Mark A. Oligschlaeger executive vice president/chief operations officer. He joins the insurance firm after having spent the past 12 years working for Leucadia National Corp., where he most recently served as the vice president of Leucadia’s real estate development entity.

He is replacing former Chief Operations Officer James Jones, who recently retired from the insurance industry after more than 20 years.

Heffernan Insurance Brokers hired Jared Morrison as a commercial lines producer in its Portland, Ore., office. Morrison will expand the company’s large commercial hospitality and allied health client base in the Pacific Northwest.

Morrison is a resident of Vancouver, Wash., and will serve clients throughout the Pacific Northwest. Prior to joining Heffernan, he managed his own agency for Farmers Insurance and won two sales awards: the “Blue Vase” for life insurance and the “Toppers Club” for all lines of insurance. Earlier in his career, he sold personal insurance lines for Liberty Mutual and won the “Liberty Lamplighter” life insurance sales award. He also served his country for three and a half years in the Washington National Guard.

SCF Arizona promoted directors Ginny Arnett Caro to vice president of claims services, and Dan Hernandez to vice president of operations and small business services.

Arnett Caro oversees a division that brings together SCF’s claims adjusters with professionals performing medical review and provider inquiry services. She had 15 years of medical industry experience before joining SCF in 2000 to manage the Yuma, Ariz., office. She transferred to Phoenix in 2005 as director of account services, and was promoted in 2008 to director of claims management.

Hernandez most recently served as director of contact centers and customer services, overseeing claims and policy contact centers, the Small Business Center, Inside Sales, the Document Control Center and Project Solutions. He began his career with SCF Arizona as a premium auditor in 1995. Since then, he has worked as a claims adjuster, an auditor compliance reviewer, and as a team leader for an account services team.

Willis North America named Colleen McCarthy director of communications for Willis North America. McCarthy will be based in New York City.

In her new role, McCarthy will oversee internal, external and digital communications for the company’s North American unit. As part of Willis’ communications team, she will support Don Bailey, chairman and CEO of Willis North America, and his management team and the regions and practices of the unit.

Previously, McCarthy was an associate editor, television reporter and news anchor at various news outlets in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

Insurance broker Marsh appointed Sally Roberts director of U.S. Media Relations. Roberts has reported on risk management, employee benefits and alternative risk financing since 1992. Most recently, Roberts covered the brokerage sector, including retail, reinsurance and wholesale brokerage firms.

Navigators Management Co. Inc. expanded its professional liability division by hiring several industry experts in the architects and engineers professional liability arena. Bill Farran was hired to lead this new initiative.

Farran has 22 years experience working in the marketplace. Prior to Navigators, he worked at Travelers, where he held the position of practice leader for the Design Professionals and Real Estate Professionals divisions within Travelers Bonds and Financial Products.

Joining Farran are underwriting directors David Blue, previously of Victor O. Schinnerer Inc., and Allison Esrig, previously of Travelers. The company said that distribution will now be focused on direct relationships with appointed Architects & Engineers agents. New business submissions with effective dates on or after April 1, 2010, can be submitted directly to Navigators.

Kevin West was appointed director of business development for CNA. He will help shape and expand CNA’s market presence and sales culture from CNA’s Woodland Hills, Calif., branch, and will support CNA operations from Los Angeles to San Diego.

West joined CNA in 2003 and has served in several sales capacities in the business insurance segment, as well as field distribution management. Prior to joining CNA, West worked with two other national carriers and a Los Angeles wholesale brokerage firm.

Phoenix-based Mountain West Agency Services Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of SCF Premier Insurance Co., named Donald L. Kasper general manager and Jim McErlean marketing specialist.

Kasper has worked in the insurance industry since 1971, and has a proven record in startup, turnaround and business growth settings. He has served in nearly every capacity, from underwriter to vice president, in companies in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia. He is a licensed surplus lines broker in Arizona and a member of the Western States Surplus Lines Association and the Surplus Lines Association of Arizona.

McErlean has more than 20 years of experience, starting in the underwriting ranks. He has spent his career opening up branch and regional offices for workers’ compensation companies and programs. His experiences encompass the western United States and crosses over into general liability, excess/umbrella coverage and surplus lines.

Barney & Barney LLC, a San Diego-based insurance brokerage, added 13 sales associates throughout its three branches in San Diego, Orange County and the San Francisco Bay Area. The new hires, who are recent college graduates, include: Sarah Bedford, Robert Biestman, Sam Brasch, Rachel Clarkson, Sam De Sa, Tyler Dunigan, Michael Finnerty, Drew Glover, Cody Jones, Cale Quasha, Dustin Rich, Alexandra Smith and Mandy Stephens.

Loveland, Colo.-based Ewing-Leavitt Insurance Agency, a Leavitt Group affiliate, named Patrick Hagge vice president of risk management. Hagge will focus on providing safety and risk management support to clients. Hagge brings more than 23 years insurance experience to the agency in risk management. Previously, he worked for LBN Insurance as director of safety and loss control.

BuckleySandler LLP, a financial services law firm based in Washington, D.C., with offices in Los Angeles and New York, added Donna L. Wilson, a class action defense and insurance coverage litigator, as a partner in Los Angeles. She joins BuckleySandler LLP from Kelley Drye LLP, where she was a litigation partner and co-chair of that law firm’s Consumer Financial Services practice group.

The National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research appointed Rob Weidert regional relationship manager. Weidert is a licensed agent and broker in California and New York. He began his insurance career more than 12 years ago as a commercial producer in New York with Casswood Insurance Agency Ltd. He joined the faculty of The National Alliance for the Dynamics of Selling program. He served as a member of the California Young Brokers and Agents committee for Insurance Brokers and Agents of the West, where he received the Outstanding Communication Award for his efforts at the 2000 conference.

Barlocker Insurance Services of Carlsbad, Calif., added Michele Booth as an account executive. She brings with her 10 years of experience from Marsh Risk & Insurance in San Diego.

SullivanCurtisMonroe added Christa Yorke as an account executive in its Irvine, Calif., office. Yorke joins SCM from Federated Mutual Insurance in Orange County, Calif., where she was a senior marketing representative.

San Francisco-based Woodruff-Sawyer & Co. named Robert (Andy) Griffin vice president, employee benefits team leader in the Southern California office. Most recently, he was a practice leader in the Newport Beach, Calif., office of Mercer Health & Benefits.

Oakland, Calif.-based EQECAT Inc. named Marian Szefler senior vice president of software architecture. Prior to joining EQECAT, Szefler was senior vice president of software development for another catastrophe modeling firm.

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Insurance Journal West October 4, 2010
October 4, 2010
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