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USI in the News

USI News Archives:

USI’s Personal Risk Experts Collaborate on New Byline Article for Trusts & Estates Journal

Article address the top five most common misconceptions associated with protecting valuable collections

USI’s personal risk experts recently collaborated on a new featured byline article for Trusts & Estates Journal titled “Busting the Myths.” In the article, the team focuses on debunking the five most common misconceptions associated with protecting valuable collections. The group also shares some insightful answers to questions relating to appraisals, the importance of taking an inventory of your collection, understanding if your homeowner’s policy will cover your collection, doubts about the cost being too high to insure your collection, and tax questions. Read the full article in the fall edition of Trusts & Estates Journal.

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Sixth Annual USI Gives Back Campaign Impacts Over 800,000 Lives Through More Than 24,000 Hours of Community Service in August

Annual Community Investment Campaign Underscores USI’s Commitment to Local Communities

USI Insurance Services (“USI”), a world leader in insurance brokerage and risk management, today announced the impact of its sixth annual USI Gives Back campaign, an award-winning social responsibility program. Throughout August, team members from more than 150 USI offices participated in over 325 local community service events across the U.S. and Europe. The cumulative impact of these events touched more than 800,000 lives, totaling over 24,000 hours of volunteerism.

"USI is privileged to have passionate and caring team members who work together to solve problems both in the marketplace and in our local communities," said Kim Van Orman, senior vice president and chief human resources officer for USI. "Our annual, month-long USI Gives Back campaign is our way of saying 'thank you' to the local communities that have been so instrumental to our success. Since the program's inception in August of 2014, more than 7,000 USI team members have come together as ONE to improve nearly two million lives. The impact of this program is truly inspiring."

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk, program and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects over 7,000 industry-leading professionals from approximately 200 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.

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John Costello Named Vice Chairman of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America

Association confirms national leadership team for 2019-2020

USI New England’s John Costello was recently named vice chairman of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big “I”) for 2019-2020. Founded in 1896, the Big “I” is the nation's oldest and largest national association of independent insurance agents and brokers, representing more than 25,000 agency locations across the country. Read the full press release.

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Jim Kane Discusses Insuring and Mitigating Airbnb Risks in New PropertyCasulty360 Interview

Article highlights how the insurance market is responding to the risks and challenges of the sharing economy.

USI’s National Personal Risk Practice Leader, Jim Kane, recently sat down with PC360 to discuss how the insurance market is responding to Airbnb risks and coverage. According to Kane, “Homeowners insurance rates do not reflect the exposure that goes with a total stranger living in your primary living space.” As the insurance industry works to keep pace with the growing sharing economy, many insurance carriers are responding with additional policy endorsements and coverage options for clients. “We’re seeing some of the standard carriers come through with endorsements because Airbnbs are becoming more common,” Kane shared. “Adding coverage is a smart thing to do because it’s an expansion of the original exposure for the coverage that’s already put together, and it’s confined to the risks that are created by having a total stranger coming to your home.” Read the full article.

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USI Receives Honorable Mention in Prestigious PR Daily Corporate Social Responsibility Awards for USI Green Program Launch

New Program Promotes Sustainability in the Workplace and in Local Communities

USI Insurance Services (“USI”) was recently announced as an honorable mention recipient of PR Daily’s Corporate Social Responsibility Awards in the Green and Environmental Stewardship category for its USI Green program launch campaign.

PR Daily’s Corporate Social Responsibility Awards celebrates teams, organizations and consultants who have redefined the field with their groundbreaking work. USI was chosen from a wide pool of entries to receive an honorable mention in the Green and Environmental Stewardship category for the impact of its USI Green program launch campaign.

USI Green was created as an employee engagement program to support an eco-friendly and sustainable environment through a series of corporate initiatives focused on recycling programs, beautification projects, and actions to lower the company’s carbon footprint. Additionally, the program encourages partnering with vendors who already have sustainability programs and go-green initiatives in place.

“USI set themselves apart from an outstanding field of applicants. Their work was exceptional and displayed their innovative strategies for achieving success. Congratulations, USI. We look forward to your continued success,” said Brendan Gannon, Marketing Manager for Awards Programs at Ragan Communications.

“USI is thrilled to be recognized by PR Daily for the recent launch of our USI Green program, and our ongoing commitment to supporting a culture of sustainability in the workplace and the local communities we serve,” stated Patti Vreeland, vice president of corporate real estate and procurement for USI. “One of the many applications of the USI Green program is reflected in our electronic document delivery platform where USI will be able to avoid the use of more than five million pieces of paper on an annual basis, resulting in the preservation of approximately 300 trees per year.”

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk, program and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects over 7,000 industry-leading professionals from approximately 200 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.

About Ragan Communications

Ragan Communications and PR Daily run 11 awards programs each year, including the PR Daily Awards, the Employee Communications Awards and the brand-new Top Women in Communications Awards. Judged by globally regarded experts and featuring multiple categories, these programs honor the top work in communications, PR, marketing and media.

Ragan Communications operates two of the top news and information sites for the PR and corporate communications industries: Ragan.com and PRDaily.com. Together, these daily news sites attract more than 700,000 global visitors monthly.

Ragan is the leading provider of conferences and online training for PR, media relations and corporate communications professionals.

The company also produces RaganTraining.com, the industry’s leading video and online education portal.

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USI Named a Top Insurance Workplace by Insurance Business America for Second Consecutive Year

Annual Workplace Recognition Program Ranks Leading Insurance Organizations Based on Anonymous Employee Satisfaction Survey Data

USI Insurance Services (“USI”), a leader in insurance brokerage and risk management, has been named a “Top Insurance Workplace” for the second consecutive year by Insurance Business America (IBA). IBA’s annual Top Insurance Workplaces program ranks leading U.S. insurance organizations based on a series of employee satisfaction metrics, including benefits, compensation, culture, employee development and diversity.

“We are honored to once again be recognized as one of Insurance Business America’s Top Insurance Workplaces,” said Michael J. Sicard, USI’s chairman and chief executive officer. “USI’s industry-leading tools and resources continue to attract and retain best-in-class talent from across the industry, and we’re always looking for new and innovative ways to support a workplace that is both personally and professionally rewarding. With more than 7,000 industry-leading professionals, connecting as ONE to deliver the USI ONE Advantage®, we are delivering on our vision to create a different and better experience for our clients, communities and team members.”

IBA’s Top Insurance Workplaces program has a two-phase qualification process, including an employer and an anonymous employee satisfaction survey. Company results are distributed across three separate categories based on employee size and overall employee satisfaction scores. USI was top ranked among the five organizations recognized in the large employer category (500+ employees) for 2019. To learn more, visit https://bit.ly/2Zgr30E.

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk, program and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects over 7,000 industry-leading professionals from approximately 200 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.

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John Meder Interviewed by Business Insurance on the Evolution of Active Assailant Policies

Unpredictable nature of active assailant events drive need for broader coverage and a proactive risk management approach

USI’s National Risk Advisory Practice Leader, John Meder, recently sat down with Business Insurance to discuss the ongoing evolution of active assailant policies amid continuing threats. In addition to highlighting the unpredictable nature of these events, the article explores how the insurance industry is responding through expanded coverage offerings and proactive risk management strategies to help organizations prepare and recover from a violent attack. In the article, Meder emphasizes that when these events occur, organizations run the risk of having gray areas in their standard insurance policies that may give rise to a claim being denied, which is why active shooter coverage is more appealing to certain industry groups, particularly those with substantial public exposures such as hospitality and education. Read the full article.

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Paul King Joins Expert Panel for Recent Insurance Nexus Cyber Insurance Webinar

Continued cyber product creation remains critical to the delivery of sustainable, customer-centric cyber insurance policies

USI’s National Technical Director of Executive and Professional Solutions, Paul King, presented alongside other industry experts on Tuesday, July 30, during an Insurance Nexus webinar, “Customer-First Cyber Insurance: Why Collaboration with Brokers & Clients is Key.” With cyber-attacks on the rise, increasing from 38-53% in the last 12 months, according to Hiscox Insurance, the webinar explored some of the latest cyber-related challenges facing the insurance industry. With customers looking to carriers to deliver products that protect them from growing cyber exposures, the big question remains; can carriers collaborate with brokers and clients to build solutions bespoke to the needs of individual customers? Listen to the webinar replay.

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Marcia Linton Authors Byline Article for Insurance CIO Outlook Magazine

Article highlights the basics of insurance collateral and the potential long-term impacts for insurance buyers

In a recently-published byline article for Insurance CIO Outlook Magazine, “Understanding Insurance Collateral: Why it’s Required and How it is Calculated,” USI’s Marcia Linton, SVP, national analytics practice leader, discusses why it’s important for insurance buyers to maintain a thorough understanding of insurance collateral, and the long-term impact it can have on an insured’s ability to access capital and change insurance carriers. In the article, Linton shares: “…insurance buyers are choosing to finance their risk with high deductible, loss sensitive programs to reduce their overall insurance premium costs. While many will analyze the cost of expected losses and compare against the reduction in premiums, some might underestimate the long-term impact of collateral required by the insurance carrier.” Read the full article.

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Jim Kane Discusses Florida’s Rising Tide of Flood Exposures in New Byline Article for Insurance Journal

Despite a history of flood-related disasters, many Florida residents still lack proper flood insurance coverage

USI’s National Personal Risk Practice Leader, Jim Kane, recently authored an in-depth article for Insurance Journal Magazine, examining the growing challenges facing Florida residents due to increased flooding and lack of proper insurance coverage. In the article, “Addressing Florida’s Rising Tide of Flood Exposures,” Kane notes that according to data from States at Risk, “an estimated 3.5 million people in Florida are at risk for coastal flooding yet many homeowners do not purchase the insurance coverage because of a lack of education or relying on outdated mapping systems that provide a false sense of security.” Read the full article.

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USI Insurance Services Acquires JRG Advisors, LLC

JRG Advisors to Join Forces with Wholesale Employee Benefits General Agent, Emerson Reid

USI Insurance Services (“USI”) today announced the acquisition of Wexford, Pennsylvania-based employee benefits services firm, JRG Advisors, LLC (“JRG”). The company’s existing operations will be combined with Emerson Reid, USI's employee benefits wholesale brokerage division. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Commenting on the announcement, Richard F. Galardini, chief executive officer for JRG, shared: “We look forward to joining forces with Emerson Reid by combining our resources and expertise to best position our associations, broker partners and clients for success. For more than a decade, JRG has been focused on delivering innovative product and service solutions and cultivating strong, long-term client relationships. Our partners will now have access to Emerson Reid’s My Benefit Advisor platform, specialized departments, and in-depth healthcare reform and compliance resources."

Emerson Reid President, George A. Rosiak, added: "We are thrilled to welcome Rick and Jessica Galardini, and the talented professionals from JRG to the Emerson Reid team. This partnership further strengthens Emerson Reid’s footprint and expertise in western Pennsylvania and Ohio. Through the alignment of our core business strategies and the synergies between both companies, we will continue to deliver unparalleled service and support to our association and broker partners for years to come.”

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects together over 6,000 industry-leading professionals across more than 150 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit www.usi.com.

Emerson Reid, LLC

Founded in 1974, Emerson Reid is a true wholesale general agent that has grown to over 300 employees in 12 offices. The company manages over $3.8 billion in insured premiums and more than 475,000 medical lives on behalf of their broker-partners. Its strategy is to differentiate brokers from their competition through the introduction of new and innovative programs while providing the tools, knowledge, and support necessary to expand and protect their business. For more information, visit www.emersonreid.com.

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Michelle Sullivan Recognized as One of Employee Benefit Adviser’s Top Women in Benefit Advising

Annual list highlights the benefit advising industry’s most influential women for 2019

USI Mid-South’s Michelle Sullivan was recently recognized as one of Employee Benefit Adviser’s (EBA) “Top 20 Women in Benefit Advising” for 2019. Chosen by EBA’s editors, this annual recognition program spotlights the industry’s most influential women based on their personal and professional achievements. In the feature, Michelle comments on her biggest challenge working as a woman in the benefit advising industry, “Early on, I was one of the only female benefit consultants in Atlanta, and it was difficult to be taken seriously. Once people understood I had a master’s degree in actuarial science and agreed to meet with me, their opinions changed. I believe being a female today is an advantage.” Read more.

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USI Green Program Receives Industry Recognition at 2019 IMCA Conference

New corporate sustainability program earns distinguished insurance industry recognition

USI recently took part in the 2019 Insurance Marketing & Communication Association’s (IMCA) National Conference and Showcase Awards in Minneapolis, June 23-25. USI was honored to receive an “Award of Excellence” at this year’s conference in recognition of the USI Green program launch campaign focused on supporting an environmentally conscious and sustainable culture at USI. Currently, in its 61st year, the IMCA Conference and Showcase Awards recognizes leading work in the insurance marketing and communications field, promoting a higher standard of excellence. Learn more about the USI Green program and the steps USI is taking to support a culture of sustainability in the workplace.

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Business Insurance Reports on USI’s Mid-Year Commercial P&C Market Outlook

Mid-year report forecasts continued rate increases for property and casualty insurance buyers through year-end 2019

Business Insurance recently profiled the key findings from USI’s 2019 Mid-Year Commercial P&C Market Outlook Report in a new article titled, "Property/Casualty Rate Increases Expected to Continue: USI". According to the report, the anticipated rate increases in the commercial property and casualty insurance market at year-end 2018 have gained momentum across certain lines of business during the first half of 2019. Additionally, the reduction of capacity being offered for selected lines of business has also been an increasing trend since the beginning of the year. USI anticipates these trends to continue through the end of 2019 – and perhaps beyond. Review Business Insurance’s full coverage of the report online.

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USI Insurance Services Acquires Employee Benefit Concepts, Inc.

New Partnership Expands USI’s Employee Benefits Presence in Western New York

USI Insurance Services (“USI”), a world leader in insurance brokerage, risk management and employee benefit consulting, today announced the acquisition of Buffalo, New York-based Employee Benefit Concepts, Inc. Founded in 2004, Employee Benefit Concepts is one of the largest employee benefit consulting and human capital management firms in western New York. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Commenting on the announcement, Christopher J. Fiorello, president, Employee Benefit Concepts, shared: “This partnership marks an exciting milestone for our firm. By joining forces with USI, our clients will continue to have the opportunity to work with the talented team of local experts that we have assembled, and have access to an expanded suite of industry-leading tools, solutions and expertise available through the USI ONE Advantage®, a unique platform that delivers innovative risk management and employee benefit solutions with bottom-line financial impact. We will continue to work closely with our previous payroll and HR services colleagues, who will maintain normal business operations under the existing EBC brand.”

Joseph J. Fico, USI New England regional CEO, added: “We are pleased to welcome Chris and the talented professionals from Employee Benefit Concepts to the USI family. By joining as ONE, we will continue to deliver a superior level of service and support to clients throughout western New York and beyond.”

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects together over 6,000 industry leading professionals across more than 150 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

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Christine Chipurnoi Named One of Insurance Business America’s Elite Women for 2019

Annual list recognizes 68 of the insurance industry’s foremost female leaders

USI Northeast’s Christine Chipurnoi was recently recognized as one of Insurance Business America’s Elite Women for 2019. The list, which includes 68 of the insurance industry’s top female leaders, highlights the significant contributions women are making that are transforming the industry. Christine, whose career spans more than 30 years, is a member of several industry associations, including CREW Network, one of the largest professional organizations for women in commercial real estate. She was also named the first female president of the Insurance Brokers Association of New York in more than 115 years. Read more in the June edition of Insurance Business America Magazine.

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USI Insurance Services Acquires Chernoff Diamond & Co., LLC

USI Expands Retirement Planning, Employee Benefit, Commercial and Personal Risk Expertise

USI Insurance Services (“USI”), a world leader in risk management, employee benefit and retirement consulting, today announced the acquisition of New York-based retirement, benefits and risk management advisory firm, Chernoff Diamond & Co., LLC. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Commenting on the announcement, Michael J. Sicard, USI’s chairman and chief executive officer, stated: “We are thrilled to welcome the clients and experienced professionals from Chernoff Diamond to the USI family. For nearly 45 years, Chernoff Diamond has been serving the needs of businesses and individuals across the country. We look forward to building on their innovation and expertise and continue to focus on long-term client relationships through the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive knowledge platform that integrates proprietary analytics, networked resources and enterprise planning to deliver truly customized solutions with material financial impact to clients.”

Alex Chernoff, president, Chernoff Diamond, added: “Our goal was to partner with a proven organization that will make us better. We are excited to be joining forces with USI, an established leader in employee benefits and retirement plan consulting, risk management, insurance brokerage and private client insurance services. By becoming one, by combining our experience, expertise and client focus with the dimension and industry leading capabilities of USI, we are positioned to continue delivering sound advice and comprehensive services to clients throughout the country.”

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects together over 6,000 industry leading professionals across more than 150 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

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John Meder Quoted in Business Insurance Article Highlighting the Impact Insurtech is Having on the Claims Process

Article examines the impact insurtech is having on the claims process

USI’s National Risk Advisory Practice Leader, John Meder, was recently quoted in the May Issue of Business Insurance Magazine, where he discusses the impact insurtech is having on the insurance claims process. In the article, “Insurtech Speeds Claims Process, But Security Questions Persist,” Meder shares: “Insurers can use satellite imagery of a property loss to gather data such as measurements to estimate materials needs and costs, which can be bought automatically. You typically have feet on the ground, but it’s getting to the point where you can do a lot more from behind a desk without having to go out.” Read the full article.

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Forbes Names USI One of America’s Best Large Employers for Second Consecutive Year

Survey Ranks USI Among America’s Leading Employers Again for 2019

USI Insurance Services (“USI”) has been named by Forbes as one of America’s Best Large Employers for 2019, ranking as the only insurance brokerage and consulting firm on this year’s list.

“We are excited to see the extraordinary work of our associates reflected in USI’s culture and resulting recognition as a leading employer of choice for the second consecutive year,” said Michael J. Sicard, USI’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Through our more than 6,000 industry-leading professionals, connecting as ONE to deliver the USI ONE Advantage®, we are delivering on our vision to create a different and better experience for our clients, communities and team members.”

Kim Van Orman, senior vice president and chief human resources officer for USI, added: “Our back-to-back recognition by Forbes as one of America’s Best Large Employers is a strong testament to the rewarding employee culture and work environment we are building. We invest heavily in developing our associates through our USI ONE® platform, and by offering one-of-a-kind employee reward and recognition programs that truly distinguish USI as a leading employer within the risk management and consulting industry and beyond.”

The 2019 Forbes list of America’s Best Employers is developed in partnership with market research firm Statista. America’s Best Employers are chosen based on an independent survey of more than 30,000 Americans working for businesses with at least 1,000 employees. Survey participants were asked to anonymously rate their employers on work-related topics such as working conditions, salary, potential for development, company image and willingness to recommend their employers to friends and family. The full report is available on Forbes.com at: https://www.forbes.com/best-large-employers/#6a8737eafb3e

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects together over 6,000 industry leading professionals across more than 150 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

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Rob Tockarshewsky Authors Byline for Security Sales & Integration Magazine on Cyber Breaches

Article explores the realities of cyberattacks and the steps organizations can take to mitigate the risk

USI Northeast’s Rob Tockarshewsky recently authored a byline article for Security Sales & Integration Magazine entitled, “When a Data Breach Occurs Will You Be Prepared?” In the article, Tockarshewsky explores the realities of cyber breaches and the key steps companies can take to shore up their defenses against a potenital attack. “Typically, cyber incidents at large companies make the headlines, but those events are a small percentage of all successful cyberattacks. More often, the victims are small-to-medium sized businesses that do not have appropriate resources to fully protect employees, customers and the company from a cyberattack,” stated Tockarshewsky. Read the full article.

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Paul King Discusses How Blockchain is Challenging Insurance in New Insurance Business America Interview

New technologies shift conversation around cyber liability and privacy

USI’s National Technical Director of Executive and Professional Solutions, Paul King, recently sat down with Insurance Business America (IBA) to discuss how new technologies, such as blockchain and the internet of things, are impacting understandings of data ownership and shifting the conversation around cyber liability and privacy. In the article, “How the Risk in Blockchain is Challenging Insurance,” King explains: “Insurance traditionally has been a lagging take-up indicator of technological change. Most of the risk surveys you look at will tell you that blockchain distributed ledger technology is most certainly on the minds of boards and leaders, as it should be.” Read the full article. King will continue the discussion at this year’s IBA Emerging Risks & Innovation Summit on May 14 in New York City where he will join a panel of industry experts to discuss, “Data, Privacy and New Demands on Cyber Underwriting.” Learn more.

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Christine Chipurnoi Interviewed for IBA Magazine’s March Brokerage Insight Feature

Interview spotlights key trends in the construction and real estate insurance markets

USI Northeast’s Christine Chipurnoi recently sat down with Insurance Business America (IBA) Magazine to discuss the key trends driving the construction and real estate insurance markets for the publication’s March “Brokerage Insight” feature. In the article, “The Building Blocks of Success,” Chipurnoi explains: “Builders are using drones, laser-guided equipment, robotics and wearable technologies that all have an impact on safety, so we have to make sure our policies are crafted to take all of that into consideration.” Read the full article.

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Mary Jo Jacobs to Speak at 15th Annual Diversity & Leadership Conference, April 8-12

Annual conference to highlight key D&I topics and tools to help build a diverse workforce

USI SVP, Mary Jo Jacobs, health and welfare benefits advisor, will speak at the National Diversity Council’s 15th Annual Conference and Exposition, as part of two dynamic panel discussions entitled, “How to Become a Better Leader” and “Leaning in Without Tipping Over: Achieving Work-Life Balance.” The annual Diversity & Leadership Conference features internationally-renowned speakers who share their unique experiences integrating key diversity and inclusion initiatives in both their workplaces and communities. The 2019 conference will take place in Dallas, Texas, April 8-12. Learn more.

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Miles Afsharnik to Speak at 5th Annual Employment Practices Liability Insurance ExecuSummit, April 2-3

Annual conference to cover the latest trends in EPLI underwriting and claims intelligence

Miles Afsharnik, Esq., national claims leader for USI’s Executive and Professional Risk Solutions practice group, will speak at the 2019 EPLI ExecuSummit on April 3 as part of a panel entitled, “Keeping Damages Down,” a presentation and discussion on limiting damages in employment litigation. The annual EPLI ExecuSummit is an educational conference designed for EPL professionals to hear directly from industry experts on the latest trends in underwriting and claims intelligence. The 2019 conference will be held at the Sandpearl Resort in Clearwater Beach, Florida, April 2-3. Learn more.

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Linnae Latessa Interviewed for Journal of Accountancy Feature Article on Mergers and Acquisitions

Finance professionals adopt a proactive approach to M&A transaction involvement

USI’s Linnae Latessa, CPA, corporate controller and chief accounting officer, was recently interviewed by the Journal of Accountancy, a publication of the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, for their for a newly-published feature article entitled, “Mastering Accounting for Business Combinations.” The article highlights the many ways mergers and acquisitions can present challenges for finance professionals, in addition to recommending ways finance organizations can overcome them by staying involved with the deal and preparing in advance of the closing. "Being part of due diligence can help finance understand the business being acquired and uncover areas where things can go wrong. Otherwise, you may not know what you don't know," stated Latessa. Read the full article.

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Kara Altenbaumer-Price Pens Byline Article for Best’s Review

Recent court rulings expected to impact the D&O insurance market in 2019

In a recently-published article entitled, “Buckle Up: Directors and Officers Insurance Rates for Public Companies Likely to Harden in 2019,” USI’s Kara Altenbaumer-Price, SVP, corporate risk and governance, explores the latest trends and recent court rulings impacting the directors and officers insurance market and implications for public companies in 2019. “The U.S. Supreme Court's March 2018 decision in Cyan v. Beaver County Employees Retirement Fund ushered in a hard D&O insurance market for new initial public offerings,” stated Altenbaumer-Price. “Within weeks, premiums and retention levels rose dramatically for companies seeking to purchase their first public D&O insurance program.” Read the full article.

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USI Insurance Services Acquires GFI Insurance Brokerage

USI Strengthens Commercial, Employee Benefit and Personal Risk Presence in Northeast Region

USI Insurance Services (USI), a world leader in insurance brokerage and risk management, today announced the acquisition of New York-based GFI Insurance Brokerage, Inc. Founded in 2003, the insurance brokerage provides commercial property and casualty, employee benefit and personal risk solutions to clients in the Northeast region. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Commenting on the announcement, James M. Butler, USI Northeast regional CEO, stated: “We are excited to welcome the clients and experienced professionals from GFI Insurance to the USI family. By joining together as one, we look forward to advancing GFI’s innovative culture and focus on long-term client relationships through the USI ONE Advantage®, a unique platform that delivers innovative risk management and employee benefit solutions with bottom line financial impact.”

Brian Gross, president, GFI Insurance Brokerage, added: “We are thrilled to be partnering with an established industry leader known for their innovative risk management, insurance brokerage and consulting expertise. USI’s solutions are best-in-class, and we look forward to delivering an unparalleled client service offering for businesses and individuals throughout the Northeast region.”

About USI

USI is one of the largest insurance brokerage and consulting firms in the world, delivering property and casualty, employee benefits, personal risk and retirement solutions to large risk management clients, middle market companies, smaller firms and individuals. Headquartered in Valhalla, New York, USI connects together over 6,000 industry leading professionals across more than 150 offices to serve clients’ local, national and international needs. USI has become a premier insurance brokerage and consulting firm by leveraging the USI ONE Advantage®, an interactive platform that integrates proprietary and innovative client solutions, networked local resources and enterprise-wide collaboration to deliver customized results with positive, bottom line impact. USI attracts best-in-class industry talent with a long history of deep and continuing investment in our local communities. For more information, visit usi.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

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Sharon Ruth Co-Authors Article in the Delaware Medical Journal

Article highlights the importance of mitigating medical waste handling liabilities in healthcare organizations

USI’s Sharon Ruth, client advocate, based in Wilmington, DE, recently co-authored an article for the Delaware Medical Journal examining the steps medical professionals can to take to protect their practices from medical waste handling liabilities. In the article, Ruth and co-author, Matt Georgov, Owner and Founder of Choice MedWaste, outline the five key issues that can create significant liability exposures for individual healthcare practices and how to avoid them. Read the full article.

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Gregg Roberts and Brian Dove Co-Author Article for National Real Estate Investor

Article examines how commercial real estate companies can effectively manage environmental risks

USI’s Gregg Roberts, national environmental risk mitigation practice leader, and Brian Dove, national real estate practice leader, recently co-authored a byline article for National Real Estate Investor entitled, “How to Manage Environmental Risks at Commercial Real Estate Companies.” The article examines some of the most common environmental risk issues faced by commercial real estate owners today, including legionella, mold and vapor intrusion exposures, along with the importance of having a comprehensive environmental risk management plan in place to address potential liabilities and claim drivers. Read the full article.

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Paul King Cited in Business Insurance Article on New GDPR Regulations

Data protection policies under close review as new regulations take effect.

European Union Regulators recently sent a clear signal about how strictly they will enforce the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) with a $57 million dollar fine against Google. The fine was aimed at violations of the GDPR focusing on transparency of information provided by Google and their ads personalization process. Paul King, USI national technology solutions practice leader, based in Dallas, commented: “In the grand scheme of things, $57 million is a big number. For Google or Alphabet overall, it’s not really that big of a number, but it represents something as far as a fine goes that is a watershed moment.” Read the full article.

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