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David Abbene
Managing Director
David Abbene is the US practice leader and a managing director in the Claim Consulting Practice of Marsh Risk Consulting (MRC), based in Chicago. He focuses on developing and delivering workers’ compensation process improvement and cost reduction strategies. He assists a variety of organizations in the design and implementation of operational audits and assessments and in redesigning processes to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of service delivery.
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Jon Bakkedahl
Preparedness Manager
Nevada Division of Emergency Management

Jon Bakkedahl is the Training Officer for the State of Nevada, Department of Public Safety’s Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (DEM) and has been in this role for 2+ years at DEM. Jon also serves as the Operations Section Chief in the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) during activations, a member of the Nevada All Hazard incident Management Team and is one of the 24 hour DEM Duty Officers.

Jon serves on the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) and is the Radiation Committee Chair and as a member of the Policy and Legislative Committee.

Prior to the opportunity at DEM, Jon was a supervisor in the state Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH) Radiation Control Program. There he worked on and managed grants, and oversaw the training of staff & responders, inspections of Radiative Materials Licensees and was the Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) of the Beatty Low Level Radioactive Waste site (LLRW). Jon was involved in the state radiological response training for the last ten years and has worked for the US Department of Energy (DOE) Transportation Emergency Preparedness Program (TEPP) as a contract instructor for the past seven years.

When Jon is not working, he enjoys mountain biking with his wife and boys. He has also been an advocate and coach for the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) and the Nevada League, which has been coaching in Northern Nevada for three seasons.

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Shirley Blazich
Alverson, Taylor & Sanders Law Firm

Shirley Blazich is a long-time Nevadan whose practice areas include medical malpractice litigation (defense), employment discrimination litigation, transactional and contract matters, and general defense litigation including personal injury, business litigation, and breach of contract claims. In addition to litigated matters, Shirley has represented physicians, nurses, hospitals, clinics, dentists, optometrists, and various other healthcare providers with Nevada State Medical Board and Nevada Nursing Board complaints, as well as with credentialing issues and Fair Hearings held by health maintenance and preferred provider organizations. She is also a Court appointed Arbitrator in Clark County.

In 2012, Shirley argued before the Nevada Supreme Court and helped to create new law on when the statute of limitations begins to run as a matter of law in medical malpractice lawsuits. See Winn v. Sunrise Hospital, et al, 277 P.3d 458 (2012)

Shirley assists clients in all areas of employment law including contracts, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claims, and providing educational seminars to human resources departments to ensure compliance with applicable employment laws.

Shirley graduated from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California in 1999 with a double major in Philosophy and Psychology, and received her Juris Doctorate from Loyola Law School, also in Los Angeles, in 2003. Having grown up in Las Vegas, Nevada, she returned home following graduation and took a position at our firm in 2003. In 2010, Shirley accepted a partnership with the firm. Shirley has an "AV Preeminant" rating with Martindale-Hubbell, and has been listed in Mountain States SuperLawyers and Superlawyers Business Edition. Shirley speaks fluent Serbian/Croatian. A self-admitted "globe trotter," she has visited 5 of the 7 continents and over 17 different European countries

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Omar Behnawa
Attorney/ Partner
Laughlin, Falbo, Levy & Moresi, LLP
Mr. Behnawa is a Partner at the San Diego office of Laughlin, Falbo, Levy & Moresi, LLP. He is a California state certified legal specialist in workers compensation law and defends employers as well as insurance carriers in all aspects of workers' compensation law including Labor Code section 132a and Serious and Willful injury claims. Mr. Behnawa regularly provides training to employers, claims’ personnel and attorneys.
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Bruno Bowles
Preserve Manager
Springs Preserve
From wolverines to water conservation and just about everything sustainable in between, Bruno has spent his career caring for and working to help excite others about conserving our most precious resources. Bruno has worked at a wildlife park near Mt. Rainier, coordinated a conservation and education program for the City of Tacoma, managed the education department at a wolf conservation organization and even spent a couple of sessions serving as a lobbyist at the Nevada State Legislature. He landed here at the Springs Preserve, his dream job, to continue to support the mission of the Springs Preserve to provide a cultural gathering place, celebrate the vibrant history of Las Vegas and to share a vision for a sustainable, successful Las Vegas.
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Bob Bowman
Director Risk Management
The Wendy's Company

Bob is a graduate of The Ohio State University. He entered the Property & Casualty insurance industry in 1990, with Safeco Insurance Companies, and spent seven years with them in a variety of auto, property and casualty claims-related roles.

Bob joined Macy’s in 1997 and held a variety of roles within their Risk Management department, including oversight of self-administered Workers’ Compensation, Auto Liability, General Liability, and Property claims, Risk Management Systems and IT Operations, Risk Management Reporting, Business Continuity Planning and Crisis Management, as well as Insurance program design, placement and management.

Bob joined Wendy’s in 2014 and is currently the Sr. Director, Risk Management. He shares responsibility for the evolving Integrated Risk Management functions, including traditional risk management components such as insurance procurement, claims management and safety, as well as emerging and non-traditional components such as enterprise risk management, business continuity, compliance and incident response management.

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Mark Briggs
Chief Financial Officer
The Penta Building Group

Mark Briggs brings more than 25 years of experience in the construction industry to PENTA. He holds a dual B.S. degree in Business Administration and Management from the University of Phoenix. Mark is responsible for overseeing all accounting, finance, treasury, risk management functions, and the organization’s insurance programs including Subcontractor Default, project owner insurance programs and PENTA’s rolling Contractor Controlled insurance program which has completed over $1 billion in construction with less than $10,000 in claims. The organization’s structure includes multi-state locations, multiple job-sites throughout our different regions, PENTA’s Charitable Foundation and a self-contained captive insurance company.

As CFO and member of the executive team, Mark's responsibilities include, but are not limited to, strategic planning, credit control, budgets, financial operations, accounting controls, coordinating financing activities, company insurance and risk management matters, legal matters, monitoring expenditure and liquidity, managing investment and taxation issues, data analysis and forecasting, compliance, audit controls, and providing timely financial data to owners and executive management team.

Mark is a Management Trustee for Laborers Local 872 Health Welfare & Pension Funds, CFMA Member, and IRMI Member.

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Marcelo Brutti
EVP, Chief Risk Officer
City National Bank, an RBC Company
Brutti is an Experienced Chief Risk Officer with a demonstrated history of working in the financial services industry (both consumer and commercial). He is skilled in enterprise risk management, credit risk management, operational risk management, residual value risk management, consumer and commercial underwriting, model development and validation, capital management and compliance. He is currently the CRO at City National Bank, an RBC Company. Prior to that he was the CRO for Hyundai Capital America overseeing the consumer and commercial risk management enterprise data management an information protection departments. Other experience include Santander Bank, N.A., where he was the CRO in charge of the risk management and compliance groups and has held senior leadership roles in the risk management units of TD Bank, Wells Fargo and VISA Inc.
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Sandip Chaterjee
Senior Vice President
Marsh Claims Practice
Sandip Chaterjee leads Product, Digital and Analytics initiatives and solutions for the Client Advisory Services business at Marsh. Prior to joining Marsh, Sandip led the Advanced Analytics and Digital practices for a major TPA. In this role, he was responsible for creating and implementing various decision support solutions.
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Jorey Chernett
Authentic 4D
Jorey Chernett is the CEO and founder of Authentic4D, an FDA-approved, medical software company, serving the medical, legal and insurance claims and litigation management industries. Jorey has more than 20 years of medical technology experience, and previously co-founded E4D Technologies, LLC (E4D), a medical device company providing three-dimensional (3D) imaging and CNC milling solutions to the dental crown and bridge industry. As president of E4D, Chernett led the company in architecting and executing its business model, and taking E4D through key strategic partnerships which ultimately culminated in a sale to 3M.

Jorey’s prior experience also includes experience as a venture capitalist at Illinois Ventures, and as an investment banker at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette. He received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Finance with honors from Indiana University.

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Raylene Chiarizzio
Sr. Vice President
Willis Towers Watson
Raylene Chiarizzio is a Senior Casualty Broker providing creative and innovative insurance solutions to large and complex clients across multiple industry sectors.   She has spent the last 25 years working in the manufacturing, construction, logistics, and insurance industries in such capacities as Buyer, Operations Manager, Service and Compliance Manager, Account Executive, and Broker; the last 15 years’ being in the insurance industry. 
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Matt Chmel
Senior Vice President and Team Leader Cyber Solutions

Matt is a Senior Vice President and Team Leader in Aon’s Cyber Solutions Group part of the E&O/Cyber broking team located in Chicago. In this capacity, Matt is responsible for managing a team of brokers and broking:

  • Network Security and Privacy Liability (Cyber)
  • Miscellaneous Professional Liability
  • Technology Errors and Omissions
  • Media Liability 

Matt’s direct client work focuses on assisting organizations with identifying, addressing and transferring exposures related to network security, privacy, technology, professional service and media. He works with a range of organizations in many industry sectors. Matt excels at working with clients with $1B - $50B in revenue. He focuses particularly on Aon’s Midwest, Southeast & West coast operations and client base.

Prior to joining Aon, Matt built a foundation in insurance as a transportation and logistics insurance account executive & broker at Avalon Risk Management. In this role he worked with all lines of insurance for transportation and logistics oriented clients. In January of 2011 Matt transitioned over to Aon.

Matt received his Bachelors of Science degree in Business Administration from Illinois State University in 2006.

He is a licensed Property and Casualty Insurance Broker He is a licensed Surplus Property and Casualty. Insurance Broker He received the Young Guns 2018 award from Insurance Business America. Matt has been published and quoted in many publications related to the exposures and product lines he brokers.

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Chris Clark
Vice President Cyber Solutions

Chris leads the business development efforts on the West Coast for Aon Cyber Solutions. Aon Cyber Solutions is a leading advisor to both corporations and law firms regarding Cyber Security, Digital Forensics, Investigations & eDiscovery.

Chris’s responsibilities include providing oversight and collaborating with public and private companies to devise strategy, improve cyber security posture and implementation of program initiatives. Chris is very technical and possesses strong relationships within in the information security marketplace.

Chris has served as a strategic advisor for 15+ years in the Information Security sector. He started his career at Merrill Corporation where he was the Vice President for the Southeast Region. In 2009 Chris moved to Los Angeles as the Sr. Director at FTI Consulting responsible for the West Coast & APAC regions inside the technology practice.

Chris specializes in the Cyber Security, Digital Forensics, & eDiscovery. He has experience providing strategic advisory to the Private Equity, Technology & Banking sectors.

Chris earned a BA degree from University of Georgia in 2001.

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Nicholas Contes
Risk Manager
Henry Schein
Henry Schein is a global provider of healthcare products, technology, and value added services. In 2018 Henry Schein, Inc. reported sales of $9.6 billion and operations in 31 countries. As Risk Manager, the responsibilities of Nicholas Contes include insurance procurement, claims management, loss control, mergers and acquisitions, and a global supplier due diligence program which ensures the compliance of over 3,000 suppliers.
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Terri Cooper
VP of Sales

Terri Cooper is the Vice President of Sales at Switch. Terri relocated to Reno, Nevada in 2016 to lead Sales for Switch's Citadel Campus. Terri leverages her background in application development, infrastructure and data center operations at multi-national corporations to help her clients develop their data center strategy and leverage the capabilities of the Switch ecosystem. Her extensive experience in running data center migrations of all sizes enables her to assist her clients in planning the move of their mission critical systems to Switch.

Terri started her career at Accenture working with clients in the telecom industry. She has worked at Level 3 Communications, Infocrossing (formerly iStructure), andCSG International. Immediately prior to joining Switch she was the EVP of Operations for Trace3.

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Tim Coumbe
VP, National Account Executive
Interstate Restoration

Tim is considered an industry expert, a licensed insurance executive in Property & Casualty Commercial Insurance with 24 years’ experience: Surety Underwriting, Real Estate Construction, Builder’s Risk, OCIP and CCIP projects, in conjunction, with Large Loss mitigation/ Emergency Service - Disaster Recovery programs. The last 8 years, his primary focus has been working with fortune 50/500 Commercial clients in the BI Business Interruption arena. Mr. Coumbe has worked on such notable CAT hurricanes from Irene, Thailand Floods, Sandy, Odile Mexico, Harvey, Irma, Maria, Florence & Michael.

His Commercial portfolio of clients range from, Retail, Manufacturing, Hospitality, Non- Profit, Higher Ed, Healthcare, and REITS. Coumbe has an innate ability centric to his clients needs to get them backup and running, as quickly as possible. The impetus is knowing how to manage risk on large loss mitigation projects from start- to - finish, working with Brokers, Underwriters and Adjusters.

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Whitney Craig
Director of Government Relations
As Director of Government Relations, Whitney Craig is responsible for leading RIMS' Federal and State Government Relations program. This program serves as a vehicle for supporting legislation that supports RIMS member's policy initiatives and concerns. Prior to joining RIMS, Mrs. Craig worked in the Government Relations departments for the American Society for Radiation Oncology, HMS, and the American Psychological Association. Mrs. Craig has also served as staff to two Members of Congress, now Florida Senator and Minority Leader Oscar Braynon II, and in the state and local government department of Miami-Dade County.
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James Curbeam
Risk Manager
Las Vegas Valley Water District
James Curbeam, CPCU, ARM, AIC has over 28 years’ experience in the insurance industry. He holds a B.S. in Finance from Creighton University and an Executive MBA from the University of Nebraska Omaha. He began his career with Liberty Mutual as a multi-line claims adjuster, later worked for Sedgwick North America, and then spent 11 years as risk manager at a Omaha Public Power District. James worked 4 years for Las Vegas Sands as Director of Global Claims Administration, managing both domestic and international claims handling for the organization. In March 2016, James joined Las Vegas Valley Water District as its Risk Manager. James has served in the following industry leadership roles: President Nevada Chapter of RIMS, President of Nebraska Chapter of RIMS and President of the Las Vegas CPCU Society. James is also a founding member of the American Association of Water Distribution & Management which was formed as a Thought Leadership Lab for risk management in the water industry. James was selected as a 2018 Risk All Star by Risk & Insurance Magazine.
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Lisa Deatherage
Chief Operating Officer
Lisa is responsible for driving the global infrastructure, process development, and total customer experience for CertFocus. Lisa, a seasoned insurance professional, began her association with CertFocus's parent Surety2000 in June of 2000 as Regional Manager, and quickly became Vice President of Operations. She was instrumental in the development of the CertFocus solution, working with strategic partners, customers and internal programming to foster the solution and platform that now leads the certificate of insurance management industry. In 2005, Lisa was appointed Chief Operations Officer of CertFocus, assuming total responsibility for the CertFocus customer and operations center in Kansas City, Missouri. She is a frequent lecturer and recognized thought leader on risk management, surety and risk transfer strategies.

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Aaron DelCotto
Environmental Health Supervisor
Southern Nevada Health District
Aaron DelCotto has over a decade of experience in the field of Environmental Health. He is currently a Supervisor at the Southern Nevada Health District in Food Operations. He supervises 11 inspectors and 1 senior inspector and is responsible for the verifying sanitation and risk-factor management at 4500 food establishments. Beyond food safety compliance, Aaron has experience with vector control programs, aquatic health programs, clean-air compliance, and institutional inspections. He is an active member of the Nevada Environmental Health Association and has served as that organization’s Secretary. He is a dual major from the University of Miami, Ohio in both Environmental Health and Industrial Hygiene.
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Renata Elias
Vice President/Managing Consultant

Renata Elias is a consultant within Marsh Risk Consulting’s Strategic Risk Consulting Practice. She provides counsel and support to clients in a wide range of sectors with organizational resilience including crisis management, emergency response, workplace violence (including active shooter), crisis communications, business continuity, reputational risk, and disaster and crisis response.

With experience in both the public and private sector, she supports organizations with development of crisis management, emergency response, evacuation, crisis communications, and business continuity plans in addition developing and conducting training and exercising, from tabletops to full-scale.

Prior to joining Marsh, Renata served as the Emergency Planning Officer at the North Shore Emergency Management Office in Canada. Duties included planning, preparedness, response, and recovery activities as it pertains to emergency and crisis management and continuity of operations. Renata was also the Emergency Coordinator for the City of Richmond, home of the Vancouver International Airport. Besides responding to aviation incidents, she participated in monthly airport tabletop exercises and tri-annual full-scale exercises. Renata also worked very closely with local government response agencies and stakeholders and was a member of a task force on mass fatality incidents.

She currently conducts college guest lectures on aviation/airport emergency planning and response, crisis management and crisis communications, and volunteers with the Family Assistance Foundation out of Atlanta, Georgia.

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Vernon Fox
Team VF3, LLC.
Vernon Fox is probably most known for his tenure in the NFL for 8 seasons (2002-2009). Playing for the San Diego Chargers, Detroit Lions, Washington Redskins, & Denver Broncos all 2 seasons. He graduated from Cimarron-Memorial HS, where his jersey was retired. He then went on to Fresno State University where he received a bachelors degree in Sociology, while excelling in both athletics as a 2-time All-Conference player and academically as a National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame post graduate award finalist (Academic Heisman) & Academic All-American. Aside from athletics, Vernon has served in ministry for over a decade and is a licensed elder. He serves as a motivational speaker throughout the country. In 2013 he accepted the position as head football coach at Faith Lutheran High School and helped lead them to their first state championship. He is happily married and has two beautiful children.
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Paul Fuller
Allied Public Risk, LLC

Paul Fuller is an insurance professional specializing in public water systems. He is a director of the American Association of Water Distribution & Management (AAWD&M), CEO of Allied Public Risk, LLC (a national Managing General Underwriter exclusively focused on public entities and public water systems), and the Insurance Administrator for the California Association of Mutual Water Companies Joint Powers Risk & Insurance Management Authority (JPRIMA). Throughout his 25+ year career in the industry, Paul has underwritten thousands of public water systems and adjusted scores of inverse condemnation claims.

Mr. Fuller earned his Bachelor of Business Administration from University of San Diego and Master of Science in Risk Management & Insurance from Georgia State University. His past industry experience includes: President, Alteris, Inc.; Wholesale & Specialty Program Operations President, Glatfelter Insurance Group; and President, S.N. Potter Insurance Agency, Inc. He holds the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) designation, a California Water Operator license (D2/T1), a California qualified Claims Manager license, and is nationally licensed as a Property & Casualty Agent and Surplus Lines Broker.

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Mark Habersack
Director of Risk Management
MGM Grand Hotel
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Dr. Karen Hardy
ERM Thought Leader and Advisor
Government Public Sector

Dr. Karen Hardy is a best selling and award-winning author and speaker. She has over 15 years experience in the risk management field in the public sector. Her book "Enterprise Risk Management: A Guide for Government Professionals" won the Most Promising New Textbook Award. Dr. Hardy has worked at multiple agencies and continues to be a strong advocate of risk management education. She has served as a member of the COSO ERM Advisory Council and the TAG for ISO 31000.

Dr. Hardy is recipient of the 2017 ERM Hall of Fame Award in Government.  She received her Doctor of Education degree in Organizational Leadership and Human Resource Development from Nova Southeastern University.

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Bavan Holloway
Vice President Corporate Audit
The Boeing Company

Holloway was named to her current position in August 2010 and is responsible for all corporate audit activities, including the Boeing Enterprise Auditor Program, a company leadership development program.

Previously, Holloway held several executive positions in finance supporting BCA and its Commercial Aviation Services division. Holloway joined Boeing in May 2002 and served as assistant corporate controller and chief accountant, responsible for directing the management of financial accounting and external financial reporting. Prior to joining Boeing, Holloway was a partner at KPMG LLP, serving clients in Chicago and New York.

An active community leader, Holloway serves on the board of the YWCA Seattle |King |Snohomish. She previously served on the board of Special Olympics of Washington and the North American board of directors for the Institute of Internal Auditors. She is a member of the Executive Leadership Council, International Women’s Forum, National Association of Black Accountants, the American Institute of CPAs, Christian Faith, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., and ALPFA, a professional association for Latino business leaders.

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Alonzo Johnson
Risk Mgmt & Liability Manager
Citu of North Las Vegas
Alonzo Johnson is the Risk and Liability Manager for the City of North Las Vegas providing strategic risk management and safety support to the City. Alonzo has worked in the insurance industry with a national workers’ compensation carrier for over 14 years in a variety of roles from premium auditor, claims adjuster to finance manager. Since relocated to Nevada, Alonzo has worked in leading risk management roles in both private and public sectors.

Alonzo earned his MBA at University of Nevada- Las Vegas. He has a Bachelor of Administration degree from Central Michigan University and a Certified Professional Manager Certification through James Madison University. Alonzo is a current Certified Risk Management Professional (RIMS-CRMP) and Associate in Safety and Health Management (ASHM).

As insurance and risk leader in the industry, Alonzo inspires respect and trust and work cohesively to optimize innovative, strategic-risk solutions that yield economic-value to businesses while controlling exposures to risk.

A frequent speaker, contributor and volunteer, Alonzo serves in capacity of the Board of Directors for RIMS Nevada Chapter overseeing social media programming and chapter administration, and president of the Public Risk Management Association (PRIMA) Nevada Chapter.

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Mahesh Joshi
Associate Professor, Global Strategy and Entrepreneurship
George Mason University, School of Business

Dr. Mahesh P. Joshi is an Associate Professor of Global Strategy and Entrepreneurship, School of Business, George Mason University and is the Founder and President of Joshi International, Inc., a strategy and innovation based consulting firm. He has been involved in more than 10 startups; a recent success is a firm that uses predictive data analytics for managing flood risk.

Dr. Joshi received his PhD from Temple University, Philadelphia. His primary teaching and training interests include: Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Strategic Management, Managing Risk and Strategies, and Business Model Analysis. Mahesh has delivered several one-day executive training and seminars to a variety of industries. He has won teaching awards for “Excellence in Teaching” for his contribution towards the executive MBA program. Mahesh has published several peer-reviewed academic journal publications that appear in leading journals in the management discipline. He has won several “Best Paper Awards” at a variety of academic conferences.

As a Mason faculty member, he is actively involved in outreach and has been awarded the “School of Business Service Award” seven separate times, exemplifying his ability to connect with the local business community.

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Laurna Kaatz
Climate Program Director
Denver Water
Laurna Kaatz directs Denver Water’s climate science, policy, and adaptation program. Her primary responsibility is to lead climate investigations and implement findings to inform planning, policy, and research. Laurna’s work incorporates many areas of water resource planning, including climate and drought planning, operational and water rights analysis, and long range integrated resource planning. As chair of the Water Utility Climate Alliance and lead practitioner of the Decision Making under Deep Uncertainty Society, Laurna is extensively engaged in climate adaptation, resilience, and long-range planning. Before her career at Denver Water, Laurna was a Professor of Physics at Sweet Briar College and went on to work as a climate scientist with Aurora Water. Laurna has a Master’s degree in physics and a Bachelor’s in physics and mathematics.
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Ksenia Koban
Vice President and Municipal Bond Analyst
Payden & Rygel

Ksenia Koban is a Vice President and Municipal Bond Analyst and Tax-Exempt Strategist at Payden & Rygel. She is responsible for credit research and assists in developing the firm’s views and strategies with regard to the municipal bond market and portfolio structure. Recently, her focus turned to the development of municipal impact and ESG investment strategies and products.

Prior to joining Payden & Rygel, Koban was a Senior Associate at Depfa Bank, Plc., in New York where she focused on municipal credit risk in the bank’s $11 billion US municipal assets portfolio. Her career in public finance began as a budget and policy analyst in New York City government where she focused on pension finance and intergovernmental affairs.

Ksenia Koban earned an MPA with a specialization in Public Finance from New York University. She received a BA in International Relations with an emphasis in Economics and Political Science from University of California, San Diego. Koban serves on the Advisory Board of the Municipal Impact Coalition and is a member of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts, Women in Public Finance, and Women Investing for a Sustainable Economy.

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Peter Maglione
Director of Risk Management
Aria Resort & Casino

Pete is currently the Vice President of the RIMS Nevada Chapter. Prior to this, he was the Director of Education for the Chapter. He has been the Director of Risk Management for Aria Resort and Casino and Vdara Hotel and Spa in Las Vegas, Nevada. since 2009. Both properties are subsidiaries of MGM Resorts International, a Fortune 500 Company. Prior to his current position, he was in charge of risk management for The Mirage Hotel and Casino, Treasure Island Hotel and Casino and Shadow Creek Golf Course, also MGM Resorts International properties. Pete has several years of experience in risk management and insurance. He has held various management positions with both State Farm Insurance and Farmers Insurance companies.

Pete received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin–Parkside. He obtained the prestigious Chartered Property Casualty (CPCU) Designation from the American Institute for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters, the Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) Designation from The American College and the Associate in Claims (AIC) Designation from the Insurance Institute of America. He is a Fellow with the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM).

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Chris Mandel
SVP and Director
Sedgwick Institute

Christopher E. Mandel is SVP, Strategic Solutions for Sedgwick and Director of the Sedgwick Institute, the world’s largest and leading claims and productivity management firm. He has held leadership positions in ERM, risk management, insurance, consulting and brokerage for large global corporates for over 30 years including with such firms as USAA Group, PepsiCo, Verizon, American National Red Cross, Liberty Mutual and Marsh. He has been a long-term senior leader in RIMS including being elected President in 2002-03 and was named Risk Manager of the Year in 2004. In 2016 he was given the Goodell Award, RIMS’ highest honor for lifetime achievement and was appointed to Risk Who’s Who in 2007. He holds and has held numerous board positions in the industry and also teaches for RIMS and the International Center for Captive Insurance Education (ICCIE), Florida State and George Mason Universities.

Mr. Mandel received his B.S. in Business Management from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and an MBA in finance from George Mason University. He is certified in ISO31000 and holds the RIMS-CRMP, RIMS Fellow, CCSA, CPCU, ARM-E and AIC designations. and is a frequent industry speaker, teacher and writer. He writes the “Claim Management” column for IRMI, is a contributor to Risk and Insurance's "Risk Insider" column and has had continuously running columns in the industry trade press since 1996.

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Ray Mattia
VP Commercial Property Claims – Major Loss
Ray joined AIG in February 1996. He has over 30 years of first party Property and Multi-line claims experience. He has been involved in directing and managing large catastrophes along with the development of an earthquake response plan. Currently his Major Loss Group is responsible for Global Multinational claims as well as Manufacturing, Real Estate, Financial Institutions, Large Inland Marine and other business segments.
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Ryan McGuinness
Managing Director, Risk Management

Ryan is a risk and insurance professional with over 25 years of experiences in risk management. Ryan’s career began in claims management and quickly pivoted to risk and insurance, which expanded globally. Ryan stands at the forefront of risk and insurance with successful experience in retail pharmacy, consumer package goods, and now motor sports. He champions the reduction of total cost of risk across business enterprises by implementing proven methods of risk control, risk financing, and risk transfer. Ryan’s pragmatic approach integrates risk principles in all aspects of business operations and business development. In today’s world of ever evolving technology, his core belief is that the industry is still a people business.

As an accomplished leader, Ryan is currently the Managing Director Risk Management at NASCAR and the International Speedway Corporation. His team oversees all aspects of safety, insurance, self-insurance, and contractual risk transfer.

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Michael Means
Risk Manager
Nevada System of Higher Education/Business Center South
Michael. L. Means has been in the risk management and insurance industry for over thirty-three years working for public and private entities, third party administrators, and insurance companies. He is currently and has been the Risk Manager for the Nevada System of Higher Education for the last 15 years overseeing the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, College of Southern Nevada, and Nevada State College. He is a Certified Risk Manager and a Certified Insurance Counselor. He has acquired his Associate of Risk Management Certificate and the Workers’ Compensation Claims Association Certificate for both Nevada and California. He has previously served as Director on the Nevada Chapter of RIMS from 2010 to 2017. He is currently active in URMIA and NSIA.
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Jessica Mechtly
Manager of Risk Management
United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee

Jessica Mechtly was named the manager of risk management for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee in November 2017. In this role, Mechtly oversees the management of operational risk programs for the domestic operations of the USOPC, including the Olympic & Paralympic Training Centers in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Lake Placid, New York. She also conducts risk identification, manages claims and oversees the insurance program for domestic operations.

Since joining the USOPC in April 2015 as a risk management specialist, Mechtly has created and implemented an enterprise-wide safety and crisis management program, composed emergency operations plans for two Olympic and Paralympic Games – Rio 2016 and PyeongChang 2018 – and has designed and implemented an emergency mass notification system and corresponding protocol for domestic operations.

Prior to joining the USOPC, Mechtly served as the risk analyst for Discover Goodwill of Southern and Western Colorado, where she managed the insurance and mitigation programs for 48 locations with diverse operations in retail, adult daycare, adult education, and janitorial and commercial laundry needs.

Mechtly earned her bachelor’s degree in finance and international business from Colorado Technical University, where she went on to earn her MBA in finance. She is a member of the Rocky Mountain chapter of the risk and insurance management society, RIMS, and a member of Women in Sports and Events, WISE. Active in her community, Mechtly also volunteers with local anti-human trafficking organizations.

Mechtly resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with her husband and three children.

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Cynthia Miranda
Lead Athletic Trainer
Pivot-Onsite Innovations
Cindy attained her Master of Science degree in Exercise Science and Human Movement from Concordia University Chicago and received her Bachelor of Science degree in Athletic Training from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

She is certified through the Board of Certification for Athletic Trainers and licensed to practice in the State of Nevada. Cindy is also a Level 3 Certified Ergonomics Assessment Specialist, providing ergonomic assessments and practical solutions to various departments in the casino industry. She has developed and implemented injury prevention programs to meet the needs of specific departments, driving positive results industry wide.

In addition to her work with Pivot-Onsite Innovations, she works with professional athletes of various sports with a specialty in corrective exercise and rehabilitation. 

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Zareen Morrison
Director Risk Management
Anaheim Ducks
In her role as Director, Risk Management, Ms. Morrison oversees her organization’s safety, insurance and risk management, including a Captive insurance company. The organization’s structure includes multiple locations, including ice rinks, inline skating rinks, a major sports and entertainment venue, as well as a family office for the owners of the company. Ms. Morrison is also an active member of the Orange County Chapter of RIMS and has served on its board for over 11 years.
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Irene Navis
Clark County Assistant Emergency Manager

Irene Navis, AICP is the Managing Partner of Navis Strategic Services, LLC. Irene retired from the public sector in February 2018, having spent the last 5 1/2 years of her 30-year career with Clark County, Nevada as the Assistant Emergency Manager.

Irene’s consulting company, Navis Strategic Services LLC focuses on emergency preparedness, including emergency response planning and grant writing. Irene’s expertise includes emergency management, nuclear waste management, grant writing and coordination, strategic planning, and meeting facilitation.

Irene has been a Certified Planner since 1996, and has served on many committees, boards, and tasks forces. Irene served as a council member on the Department of Homeland Security’s State, Local, Tribal, Territorial Government Coordinating Council from 2011 to 2018, focused on critical infrastructure protection and cybersecurity. Irene has been a Las Vegas resident for nearly 32 years, and her husband and two adult children were born in Las Vegas.

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Gary Nesbit
Sr. Director of Risk Management
RIMS Board of Directors

Gary Nesbit has been the Sr. Director of Risk Management at Young Life since 2015. Mr. Nesbit’s is responsible for safety, claims, litigation, and insurance for the various international operations of Young Life. Mr. Nesbit was elected to the RIMS International Board of Directors in 2019.

Prior to joining Young Life, Mr. Nesbit has been the Director of Risk Management for Advance Auto Parts, Belk Department Stores, Kohl’s Department Stores, Buffets, Inc., and held various positions at St. Paul Insurance Companies including the Director of Risk Management Services for National Accounts and National Programs.

Mr. Nesbit has previously been the Vice Chair of the Risk & Insurance Society’s (RIMS) International Committee and twice has served as the Chair of the RIMS Conference Programming Committee. Currently Mr. Nesbit is a member of the ANSI Z15.1 Safe Practices for Motor Vehicle Operations standard. During his career, Mr. Nesbit has earned the following designations: Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter, Certified Safety Professional; Associate in Risk Management; Associate in Claims Management; Associate in Loss Control; and Senior Professional in Human Resources.

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Josh Newsum
Senior Practice Lead - ERM
Origami Risk

Joshua Newsum is an experienced GRC professional with extensive practical and technological experience in Audit, Risk, and Compliance. As the Senior Practice Lead of ERM at Origami Risk, Joshua spearheads all ERM and GRC design and roadmap efforts, supports Sales and Marketing professionals, and collaborates with the Services team to provide world-class ERM implementation and consulting support to client projects. Joshua joined Origami Risk in 2018 and is focused on working for and with GRC customers to ensure their programs are creating efficiencies and value within their organizations.

Prior to joining Origami Risk, Joshua worked with a GRC competitor. During his time there, his focus was on designing tailored implementation experiences. He brought more than 40 customers—representing many industries that included Fortune 500 organizations, along with varying degrees of maturities and requirements—solutions that exceeded organizational expectations and drove value. Joshua also helped design product-specific features that aligned with customer and industry requests and best practices. Over the course of his career, Joshua has also served as a Risk and Audit Manager and implemented GRC solutions, first hand, as the customer. His ability to mine knowledge and experience gained on both sides of the table enables Origami to implement and adopt technologies and processes that contribute to their success.

Joshua holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance and Management from Iowa State University. He is active in the Risk and Audit community through participation in local and national events.

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Adam Peckman
Global Practice Leader – Cyber Risk Consulting

Adam is the Global Practice Leader for Risk Consulting – Cyber Solutions. He leads cyber advisory engagements with US, EMEA, and APAC multinational clients that have complex technology profiles and significant cyber exposures.

He is currently advising a global software company and Fortune 50 technology company on their cyber risk management and financing strategies.

His extensive industry experience has involved numerous cyber risk advisory projects that include enterprise wide security assessments and advanced quantitative simulations to model financial exposures from cyber risk.

His team supports clients optimise investment decisions in their cybersecurity program and design more fit-for-purpose cyber risk financing and transfer strategies.

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Sahil Punamia
Direct-to-Consumer Strategy Advisor

Originally from the San Francisco East Bay Area, Sahil Punamia earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from UCLA in 2013. Sahil spent several years after college as a management consultant for L.E.K. Consulting, where he worked on 30+ engagements helping executives at major networks and studios, professional sports teams, and media investors pivot to the digital world of content creation, distribution, and consumption.

Sahil left L.E.K. after 3.5 years to join Discovery Communications, where he helped lead digital and content strategy efforts for Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, and Science Channel, along with the $15B acquisition of Scripps Network (HGTV / Food Network).

Recently, Sahil joined Netflix as part of the Marketing Strategy team for the U.S. helping lead subscriber engagement and acquisition marketing for Netflix's Original Series, Documentaries, and Stand-Up Comedy Specials.

Sahil is also a guest presenter about the television industry at the UCLA Anderson School of Business and sits on the board of the UCLA Alumni Association, where he helps lead Career Advisory and Diversity efforts for the university’s 400,000+ alumni and 35,000+ student population.

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Scott Ritto
VP Risk Management
Kilroy Realty

Scott graduated from the University of California, San Diego in 1991 with Bachelor of Arts Degrees is Political Science and History. Scott has also obtained his Associate in Risk Management designation, and is one of the first class of RIMS-CRMP designation holders. Scott has twenty-eight years of experience in the Insurance and Risk Management Industry, which started in 1991 in the Emergency Medical/Ambulance industry. He has held risk management positions in a number of industries, including transportation, multi-disciplinary engineering and construction, stevedoring, theaters, shopping malls, and property development and management. He currently is employed with Kilroy Realty Corporation, serving as their Vice President, Risk Management, where he is responsible for all matters risk management. Kilroy owns, operates and develops Class A commercial office buildings and mixed-use properties, and currently maintains a three person Risk Management Department, which may continue to grow over time.

Scott currently is a member of the Board of Directors for the Los Angeles Chapter of RIMS, serving since 1999. He also serves as Chair of the Membership and Chapter Engagement Committee for the RIMS Society, as well as on FM Global’s Risk Management Executive Council and Sompo’s Client Advisory Council. He also serves on the Real Estate Client Advisory Council and Risk Management Advisory Panel for AIG.

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Gary Rosenblum
AVP Risk Management
California State University Sacramento
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Liz Rychling
Vice President Risk Management
MGM Resorts
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James A. Shirley, M.D.
Musculoskeletal Radiologist
Privately Practicing
Dr. Shirley is a private practicing radiologist who also serves as Authentic4D’s Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Shirley also has extensive experience in building and managing radiology networks as well as the outpatient and hospital-based radiology practices. Prior to joining Authentic4D, James served as Regional Medical Director for Envision Healthcare and Regional Chief Medical Officer for Imaging Advantage where he oversaw the integration and management of radiology practices across the Midwest including the oversight of more than 100 radiologists. Prior to this, James spent 7 years in private practice radiology following completing his radiology residency and fellowship in musculoskeletal imaging at The University of Michigan where he served as Chief Resident.
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Vladimir Sinkov
Nevada Orthopedic and Spine Center

Vladimir Sinkov, M.D. has been in private practice as an orthopedic spine surgeon since 2010. He joined Nevada Orthopedic & Spine Center in 2018 after moving to Henderson, NV with his family.

Dr. Sinkov is Fellowship Trained in Adult Spine Surgery. After starting his practice, he further specialized in Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery techniques. He currently trains other spine surgeons all over the United States in Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery and has also been involved in training Physician Assistants, Orthopedic Technologists, students, and others. Dr. Sinkov has published several studies and articles in peer-reviewed medical journals, surgical textbook chapters, and online publications. He currently serves on the board of editors for the Journal of Orthopedics for Physician Assistants.

Dr. Sinkov was born and raised in Pavlovskii Posad, Russia. He came to The United States at the age of 16 to complete his last year of high school in Olathe, Kansas. He obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry with Honors from The University of Kansas. He went on to obtain his Doctor of Medicine degree from The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He then trained as an orthopedic surgeon at the Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland and further specialized in spine surgery by completing The Maryland Spine Fellowship in Towson, Maryland with world-renowned Dr. Paul McAfee.

Dr. Sinkov’s current practices include operative and non-operative management of adult degenerative spine problems with emphasis on minimally invasive and motion preserving surgical techniques.

Dr. Sinkov lives in Henderson and enjoys spending time with his family, personal fitness, outdoor activities, and grilling.

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Lisanne Sison
Managing Director, Enterprise Risk Management
Arthur J. Gallagher
Ms. Lisanne Sison, Managing Director, Enterprise Risk Management with Arthur J. Gallagher, has over 15 years of experience providing consulting services to a broad spectrum of entities that include state and local government departments and agencies, airports, higher education institutions, health care institutions, technology companies, risk pools and K-12 private schools. Lisanne has detailed experience covering the entire spectrum and scope of ERM implementation. In addition to her ERM expertise, Lisanne also has experience in a wide range of consulting projects ranging from business process improvement reviews, to compliance reviews, to strategic planning facilitation and others.
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Daemon Smith
Director Environmental, Health & Safety

Daemon Smith has worked for over 15 years in the hospitality industry and has a wealth of security, risk management and environmental, health and safety expertise that’s been developed over his extensive career. His background in, and passion for, overall safety has provided Daemon with invaluable skills necessary to anticipate and address possible risks and implement plans and strategies to minimize loss.

In his current role as Director of Corporate Environmental, Health, and Safety he is responsible for leading the innovative, results driven risk and safety teams, programs and initiatives for Caesars Entertainments across its 40+ North American destinations.

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Sandi Swickard
Risk Management Officer
Las Vegas Valley Water District

Sandra Swickard graduated from California State University at Fresno where she earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with an Emphasis in Management.

She began her career 28 years ago in California as a Loss Time Claim Examiner I for the State Compensation Insurance Fund. She worked as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor and a Trainer for the State Fund.

She relocated to Nevada in 1996 and became a Claims Manager in 1999. She is experienced in the adjusting and management of NV claims for Self-insured employers, Associations of Self-Insured Employers, Private Insurance Carriers and the Assigned Risk Pool. She is also experienced in the handling and management of California, and Utah Claims.

In 2011 she went to work on the Employers side of the house, as the Workers Compensation Coordinator for Clark County and is currently a Risk Management Officer for the Las Vegas Valley Water District.

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Robert Tabbara
911 Security
Robert has been in the security business since 2004. He started 911 Security in 2008, specializing in
integration, design, and installation of electronic security systems. Throughout his career, Robert has
been associated with large, complex electronic security projects for government, commercial and
industrial applications. These include projects for US Army airbases overseas, City of Dallas, Walmart,
Simon shopping malls, and other major corporations. As the security industry evolved, Robert
recognized the growing need for airspace security. 911 Security now helps protect and secure airspace
against drones that threaten the safety, security and privacy of your facility.
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Lynette Thompson
Risk Management Director
Barnard Construction Company, Inc.

Lynette Thompson, CIC, has over 30 years of experience in the insurance and risk management industry. She holds a B.S. from Metropolitan State College and a dual MBA in Finance & Accounting and International Business from Regis University.

Lynette spent the first 15 years of her career working as an insurance broker. During her time as a broker, she worked for Frank B. Hall, Johnson & Higgins, and Marsh. For the last 15 years she has worked in risk management. Lynette initially worked for CH2M Hill, where she spent nine years as their Corporate Insurance Manager, handling a complex worldwide insurance program while assisting the company’s risk managers on their project placements and analysis of risk for bids and awarded projects.

Lynette is now working as the Risk Management Director for Barnard Construction Company, a large heavy civil contractor specializing in dams, oil & gas pipeline, tunneling, and transmission work. In her role at Barnard, she not only handles the corporate insurance program and project specific placements, but also works with internal staff to help implement processes to support the needs of project teams in the field.

Outside of work, Lynette has spent the last 11 years holding various positions on youth and high school non-profit athletic boards and volunteering with various non-profit community organizations.

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Chris Utterback
Affiliate Professor of Insurance / Finance

Professor Utterback is a graduate of Brigham Young University and has been involved in the insurance business for over 40 years. He began his career as a commercial lines underwriter trainee for Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company and while on the carrier side of the insurance business, held various underwriting, management and executive positions. His business focus usually centered on writing large accounts and/ or affinity groups.

In 2005, he began his career on the retail side of the business when he joined Leavitt Group Enterprises. While there, he held various responsibilities in agency operations, was president of a $23MM group captive and the leader of middle market program development. He was with the Leavitt Group until he began his current position with UNLV in August of 2016 responsible for creating an insurance and risk management program.

He is passionate for his students about the opportunities within the risk management and insurance industry. He speaks often about the opportunities within the industry for young bright people, especially those of diverse backgrounds. He is proud to represent the Lee Business Scholl and UNLV, which has recognized as the most diverse major university in the country.

He and his wife Janene are the parents of four adult children and 10 grandchildren. He enjoys family, travel, football season, working in his yard and rearranging turf and sand on the golf course.

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Darin Wagner
Security Manager
Hakkasan Nightclub
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Brad Waldron
Next Generation Risk Leader
Caesars Entertainment Corporation
Brad Waldron is Vice President, Risk Management for Caesars Entertainment headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada. He joined Caesars after a career working in numerous heavy industries where his philosophies around risk mitigation and exposure assessment were developed. His responsibilities at Caesars include managing operational risk and risk throughout the organization’s 50+ global properties including building operations, crisis planning and response, acquisitions/divestitures, captive insurance organizations, environmental compliance, claims and insured litigation, as well as the health and safety of guests and employees. In his free time, Brad spends as much time as possible with his family and outside exploring areas away from civilization.
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Phil Walls
Chief Clinical Officer

Phil Walls is the Chief Clinical Officer for myMatrixx®, a leading workers’ compensation pharmacy benefit management firm. Phil is the architect of the myMatrixx pharmacosurveillance program, and he oversees all aspects of myMatrixx’s clinical program including formulary management, drug regimen reviews and targeted interventions with prescribing physicians. Phil has been instrumental in developing myMatrixx’ clinical program, Get Ahead of the Claim™, designed to mitigate risk early in the claim process and provide positive outcomes for injured workers while reducing costs for clients.

Phil is a clinical pharmacist with over 40 years of experience in pharmacy benefit management and workers’ compensation. Phil has expertise in pain management, side effects of medications, managing overutilization, and drug abuse. He is a published author and frequent speaker on clinical topics in workers’ compensation.

Phil was named CompPharma’s 2015 Person of the Year and received a 2011 Dorland Health People award, honoring outstanding healthcare professionals. Phil received his Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from Mercer University School of Pharmacy.

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Marcin Weryk
Vice President Cyber and Technology

Marcin Weryk is Head of Cyber – West/South with AXA XL’s Cyber and Technology department. With over a decade of underwriting experience, he has assisted with product development, underwriting strategy and education of this fast growing product.

Prior to his current position at AXA XL, Marcin worked at CNA, focusing on the underwriting of Technology E&O, Miscellaneous E&O, Media and Cyber Liability. He has underwritten all business classes and sizes of risk, including Fortune 500 companies.

He is a frequent panelist at various industry conferences. Marcin is a graduate of St. John's University with a B.S. in Finance.

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Soraya Wright
Global Risk Management Executive
SMW Risk Management Consulting LLC

Soraya Wright, Founder & Chief Risk Officer of SMW Risk Management Consulting LLC, has over 30 years of experience managing complex risks for global businesses. She leverages her experience to identify and evaluate enterprise risks and determine appropriate mitigation and risk finance strategies to protect an organization’s earnings and reputation. Soraya’s previous executive positions include VP-Global Risk Management & Crisis Management at The Clorox Company, where she was responsible for leading the company’s enterprise risk management program, global insurance strategy, crisis management and business continuity for worldwide operations; President-Board of Directors of the company’s captive insurance subsidiary, which she formed; and, VP- Enterprise Risk Management at Target, where she was recruited to launch the strategy and centralized oversight of the company’s post-breach enterprise risk management program. In each role, Soraya advised C-Level executives on smart risk taking and presented her findings to the Board of Directors.

Soraya is a champion for diversity and inclusion, leveraging her influence to develop strategies, change policies, establish protocols and implement practices that enable organizations to drive success through diversity and inclusion efforts. Soraya served on the Diversity Advisory Board at Clorox, Co-led an African-American Employee Resource Group (ERG) and served on a Women’s ERG Leadership Team, to name a few. She currently serves on the Risk & Insurance Management Society’s (RIMS) Diversity and Inclusion Council and is sought out as a keynote speaker on diversity matters.

Soraya has served on the Client Advisory Board of several insurance companies and commercial insurance brokerage firms, including ACE (Chubb), FM Global, and MARSH. She is currently on the advisory board at Indenseo, an insurance telematics services company. She is a frequent speaker RIMS, Advisen, and Hawaiian Captive Insurance Forum conferences, covering a broad range of risk management topics, including Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) strategies, supply chain risk management, forming captive insurance companies and managing complex losses.

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Margaret Zechlin
Allied Public Risk, LLC

Margaret is based in San Francisco and has over thirty five years in the insurance industry since 1980. During that time, she has held various Underwriting, Sales and Management positions with both national insurers and reinsurers.

For the past eight years, she has focused exclusively on the Public Entity market segment. In her current capacity, she is focused on developing a geographically diverse book of business with retailers and wholesalers dedicated to the Public Entity sector.

Margaret has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Mississippi State University.