LIVE and Online July 14, 2020, 9:00 AM – 3:15 PM ET

8:30 am

Registration & Virtual Orientation

9:00 am

Opening Remarks

Paul Lucas

Managing Editor, Insurance Business Magazine

9:05 am

Fireside Chat: The Truth about Inclusion

Inclusivity is firmly on the agenda at top insurance companies and many organizations still miss the mark. How can you drive real change in your organization? Paul Lucas, Managing Editor of Insurance Business, talks with WII Boston Conference Chairperson Ngozi Nnaji about the awareness insurance organizations need to have and the actions they need to take to make meaningful progress.

  • The importance of intentional, sustainable focus on embracing diversity
  • Addressing the need for internal talent to reflect the external audience
  • The steps to "real change" and why companies need to do more than just "say the right thing”

Paul Lucas

Managing Editor, Insurance Business Magazine

Ngozi Nnaji

Principal, AKO Brokerage Services

9:25 am

Keynote: How To Develop A Personal Leadership Style

In this inspiring and empowering keynote, one of the foremost entrepreneurs will share rare insight into how she achieved personal and business success.

  • How to be a resilient and authentic leader in a male-dominated industry
  • Knowing yourself: unique skills and characteristics that will help drive success
  • What is the mindset required to rise to the top of your industry?

Tina Whitney

Digital Lead, MassMutual

9:50 am

Panel: The Impostor Syndrome & The Value of Mentorship

In an honest panel conversation, some of the industry’s top executives will share advice for navigating self-doubt as a rising leader and the value in supporting others through mentorship. Whether you are a current leader or a manager in training, we can always learn from one another.

  • Identifying imposter syndrome and how to overcome it
  • Tools to quiet self-doubt
  • Being your authentic self – introvert vs extrovert
  • How to create a support network at work: mentoring, reverse mentoring and sponsorship


Tracey Sharis

Head of Programs, Ironshore


Lori Bailey

Global Head of Cyber Risk, Commercial Insurance, Zurich Insurance Group

Lawanda “Elle Michell” Hall

Founder and CEO, Intelligent Intentions LLC

Candace Bourg

Product Development Director, AIG

Sarah Gavlick

Executive Territory Officer - East, Markel Specialty

10:40 am

Career Planning: Why, How, What

No matter where you are in your career, it’s important to keep looking ahead. Hear from a respected career coach on why you should be thinking about your next career move, how to take a step forward toward your goals and what you can do right now.

  • Defining success: Does it have to be about the C-Suite?
  • What steps can you take today to reach your goals?
  • Non-traditional vs traditional paths – thinking outside of the box
  • How to gain more experience in your day to day job

Erika Robinson

Director of Client Services, TheBestIRS

11:00 am

Networking & Coffee break

11:30 am

Panel: The Urgency for Diversity

The value of having diverse representation within the workplace is well documented and an increasingly important factor for clients who want to see broad representation that reflects their own experiences. However, engagement and support from company leadership is critical in achieving true diversity and inclusion in the insurance sector. This panel will examine how we can go deeper on the business case for diversity and inclusion beyond the basics.

  • Reflecting on your own leadership: What’s working & what isn’t working?
  • Initiatives to increase participation of underrepresented groups in leadership
  • What are we learning in this moment as the world focuses on racial injustice about meaningful allyship?
  • Shifting the story: how do women engage each other and men as allies?


Dawnmarie Black

Regional Director Northeast US, Lloyd's


Omari Aarons

Director, Employee Enablement, Liberty Mutual Insurance

Amy C. Waninger

Founder & CEO, Lead at Any Level LLC

Rekha Skantharaja Schipper

President & CEO, Tangram Insurance Services

Yana Harris

Founding Partner & CEO, Elements Insurance

12:15 pm

Lunch break

Lunchtime Conversations - Authenticity in Insurance: Black Women's Perspective Authenticity is an important component of the DEI (Diversity Equity and Inclusion) conversation. For women of color, particularly Black women, in the insurance industry, the ability to bring your authentic self to the workplace is often a challenge; juggling between the person that you think your organization will embrace and who you really are as a Black Woman. This lunchtime discussion is open to everyone and will be a safe space for Black insurance professionals to:

  • Share their stories and experiences related to their struggles being authentic as an insurance professional
  • Provide suggestions to employers on how to make their organizations more inclusive for Black Women
  • Exchange wisdom between experienced and emerging Black Insurance professionals on how to effectively bring authenticity to their careers

Ngozi Nnaji

Principal, AKO Brokerage Services

1:00 pm

Leveraging an Executive Presence

As you ascend into leadership, attention is often brought to your “Executive presence.” In many cases, executive presence is a mysterious “X factor” – it’s essential, but what is it? More importantly, how do you leverage it to make an impact and drive outcome? This session redefines executive presence for leaders and examines the surprising truths on how female leaders are often perceived around confidence, assertiveness, and resonance.

  • The underlying behaviors that characterize executive presence
  • Why leadership qualities shouldn’t default to the common buckets of confidence or assertiveness
  • Identify the 15 facets of executive presence
  • The correlation between executive presence and high performing teams
  • How to leverage your unique strengths to make a bigger impact and drive business

Damon Bates

Principal and Senior Consultant, Bates

1:25 pm

Mental Wellbeing in the Workplace

Deadlines, decisions and commitments are a natural part of the workplace, but when they start to cloud your perspective, it’s important to make a change. This session will address simple steps you (and your company) can take to minimize professional and personal stress and increase your overall mental wellbeing.

  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) to help mitigate stress (i.e. Guidance with new parent childcare, elderly parent support, professional shopper or travel planning, etc.)
  • Exercise and mindfulness practices to increase productivity
  • Work/life balance: How to be successful in both our personal and professional life
  • Tools your company can use to support working from home amid crisis

Kimberly George

SVP Corporate Development, M&A, and Healthcare, Sedgwick

1:50 pm

Panel: Leaders Today and the Next Generation Tomorrow

For perhaps the first time ever, companies have to manage four generations within the workplace. But what can we do to create leadership pathways for the emerging generation of Millennials and GenZers? How can companies optimize a multi-generational workplace and build up a stronger industry that authentically attracts and supports the next generation of female talent?

  • Traditional roles: how is the way we run and construct teams changing in the workplace?
  • Advice for building a strong company culture
  • Effective strategies to attract, engage and retain millennial and GenZ women within the industry
  • Best practices to keep the next generation excited and fuel their passion
  • Inside the industry: are we doing enough to promote our industry?


Kerry Messenger

Senior Account Manager, Woodruff Sawyer


Malia Lazu

EVP Chief Experience and Culture Officer, Berkshire Bank

Shay Eskridge

Field Construction Underwriter, Liberty Mutual Insurance

Owie Lei Agbontaen

Senior Underwriter - Middle Market, Sompo International

2:30 pm

– 3:30 pm Networking and Refreshments

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