July 10, 2017

Alan Jay Kaufman, chairman, president and CEO of Detroit/Farmington Hills, Michigan-based H.W. Kaufman Financial Group, has joined the School of Risk Management, Insurance and Actuarial Science board of overseers at the St. John’s University Peter J. Tobin College of Business in New York.

Kaufman has been an active and outspoken advocate for educating and attracting talent, and has initiated programs inside his own company and in academia. Under his leadership, vision and innovative programs, Kaufman Financial Group has reduced the average age of its more than 1,700-person employee base to 40.3 years — compared to the industry average of 54 years.

Mark Bates has been elected vice chairman of the Indiana Farmers Mutual Insurance Co., board of directors. Bates will continue his role as chairman for the company’s governance committee.

Bates, a 28-year insurance veteran, is the president of Pinnacle Insurance Group of Indiana in Crown Point, Ind. He holds the CIC, CSRM and AAI professional insurance designations.

Iowa-based insurance services firm, TrueNorth, added Lane Danielsen as a producer within its risk management division. He is based in West Des Moines, Iowa.

Danielsen has more than 12 years of experience in sales and most recently worked with Stryker as a sales representative.

MJ Insurance recently hired Margaret Gloyeske, Jacob Jones and Michaela Neal in Indianapolis, Ind., where the independent agency is headquartered.

Gloyeske will join MJ as a client executive, where she will lead the development and execution of client benefit plan strategies. Gloyeske brings more than 20 years of leadership and business management expertise. Prior to MJ, she was the director of lawyer and consultant recruiting at Faegre Baker Daniells LLP.

Jones joins the employee benefits team as a consultant. Previously, Jones worked as a sales consultant at Gregory & Appel Insurance, working with clients of all sizes and industries.

Neal, was spring semester intern in MJ’s risk management department and continues as a risk transfer specialist trainee. She recently graduated from Butler University with a degree in risk management and management information systems, where she was a participant in the MJ Insurance Student-Run Captive Program.

MJ Insurance also has an office in Phoenix, Ariz.

Huffman Insurance Group, based in Moberly, Mo., hired Nathan Summers as its newest licensed insurance agent.

Prior to joining Huffman Insurance Group, Summers worked at an insurance company as a multi-line agent. He also previously served as senior assistant manager at a financial organization.

Huffman Insurance Group is a full-service insurance agency founded in 2015 that specializes in auto, home, life, commercial and farm insurance. It is a member of Valley Insurance Agency Alliance.

Orland Park, Illinois-based insurance brokerage and risk advisory firm, The Horton Group, has hired Tricia Pucek as chief financial officer.

Pucek is responsible for overseeing all corporate accounting and financial reporting, and identifying growth opportunities for the agency’s 13 offices located in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

She most recently served as corporate controller at Hub International.

Property/casualty insurance broker, Keystone Insurers Group (Keystone), appointed Mark Maurer as its state vice president in Michigan.

Maurer recently was vice president at Arlington/Roe. While there he established an office in Grand Rapids and created and coached a team that grew to $20 million in premium. He also helped increase the number of contracted agents in the state, working to position the carrier as a program provider to the Michigan Association of Insurance Agents.

Everest Re Group Ltd., based in Hamilton, Bermuda, announced that Jeff Benzin has joined Everest Insurance as vice president and head of the Midwest Region and John Romano joins as a vice president.

Benzin comes to Everest from Avant Underwriters, where he was vice president of Alternative Risk. Prior to that, he spent over 20 years at Zurich North America. Benzin brings 30 years of underwriting experience to his new role. He will be based in the Everest Insurance Chicago office.

Romano joins Everest from XL Insurance Group, where he was an AVP and senior underwriter in the Global Risk Management unit. Prior to that, Romano spent seven years at Zurich. Romano is based in Denver and will report to Benzin.

Midwest Employers Casualty has promoted Brian Billings to vice president of Predictive Analytics.

As the Midwest Employers Casualty strategy evolved from data acquisition to leveraging data assets, Billings led the effort to deploy machine learning technology for the early identification of high-risk workers’ compensation claims.

In addition to his current responsibilities, Billings is now tasked with expanding the reach of this technology to include more of Midwest Employers Casualty’s clients and business partners.

Billings has more than 20 years of technology experience in industries including banking, investment services, insurance services and healthcare, including the last eight years with Midwest Employers Casualty. He formerly was the director of business analytics for Midwest Employers Casualty. Billings is licensed to practice law in Missouri and Tennessee.

Midwest Employers Casualty provides workers’ compensation excess insurance products to individual employers, groups and insurance companies nationwide, and is a member company of W. R. Berkley Corp.

Farmington Hills, Mich.-based Amerisure Insurance promoted Chris Spaude to vice president of finance.

Spaude will be responsible for, and collaborate with, Amerisure’s strategic and operational leadership teams and field leadership in identifying and implementing business strategies, executable initiatives and plans, enabling the achievement of corporate strategic and operational targets. He has been with Amerisure for 14 years.

Kevin Loppnow joined Lockton’s Milwaukee office as a property/casualty unit manager.

Loppnow is an industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience as a property/casualty strategist.

He previously worked for Lockton in Atlanta, and has returned to the company after running Willis Towers Watson’s property/ casualty operation in Wisconsin for four years. His expertise includes program design, marketplace negotiations, large deductible casualty programs and developing associates.