Insurance-Canada.ca appreciates the advice and guidance provided by the members of our advisory board. As experienced industry leaders, they represent a cross-section of insurance and bring valuable wisdom and insight to us and to the services we offer the industry.
Debra Ambrose most recently worked for Aviva Canada as the Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships for Aviva Canada. Her varied career includes developing strategic marketing plans, business development, sales management, operations, research and insights; and the management of multi-functional work teams.
Debra has substantive executive experience – managing large marketing organizations and sales professionals. Prior to joining Aviva Canada, Debra was the Head of Product Development and Financial Services for American Express Canada. During this time, Debra developed several cobranded credit card products and successfully managed large corporate partnerships.
Debra describes herself as a passionate marketer with a keen eye for progressive and innovative marketing. Some of her favourite brands include Aviva and American Express, Apple, and President's Choice Financial.
Co-Founder & COO, EQUA Specialty Risk Partners
Co-Founder and COO of EQUA Specialty Risk Partners Corporation, Andy’s role is pivotal in shaping the strategic growth of this new specialty risk and insurance broker across Canada.
A strategic thinker with international experience; Andy has developed partnerships and market relationships across the globe working for such organizations as JLT, Marsh, Willis, RSA and Aviva.
President & CEO, isure
Dario Battista is one of Canada’s leading innovative retail digital insurance brokers and an industry leader in insurance digital marketing and social media. As President and CEO of isure, Dario transformed a traditional insurance brokerage business into a leading organic growth digital insurance retailer.
Starting in insurance as a sales producer, Dario has succeeded in every aspect of the retail insurance marketplace. Initially building a profitable portfolio of personal insurance clients, Dario transitioned to commercial insurance, where he became a top commercial producer. His success comes from his core belief to put the customer in the center of everything you do.
Dario’s creative and unique approach to insurance retail marketing stems from his solid foundation in insurance sales, along with his unique perspective having grown up in the travel retail and wholesale industries. Through his family’s businesses, Dario witnessed the transformation of retail travel and how successful agents adapted their business models to changing customer demands.
In 2006, Dario saw an opportunity to transition his successful traditional brokerage into a brand focused multi-choice digital insurance retailer. Through organizational restructuring, effective and creative use of digital marketing and an extensive social media platform, isure has become a leading Canadian independent retail insurance brokerage.
What differentiates isure from other digital brokers is its focus on organic growth. Isure relies exclusively on its brand in attracting new clients. Through this strategy Dario has built a sustainable insurance retail and marketing model allowing isure to continually invest in brand building and customer development.
Head of Corporate Innovation Thought Leadership, Communitech
Simon is currently Head of Corporate Innovation Thought Leadership at Communitech which is a private-public innovation hub in Kitchener Waterloo that supports a community of 1400 companies from startups, to scale-ups to large global players. He is responsible for acting as Communitech’s thought leader in corporate innovation and working with corporate clients to leverage the Kitchener Waterloo and global tech ecosystem.
Prior to joining Communitech, he was Assistant Vice President, Strategic Initiatives for Manulife Financial where he was responsible for strategic planning and development for the Insurance and Investment businesses as well as leading the digital solutions, advisor experience and regulatory and public affairs. He has worked in the financial services industry for 20 years and has a diverse background in banking, investment management, and group pension/benefits where he has held a variety of senior positions in strategy, product, business development, operations, and project management.
Simon holds an MBA from Wilfrid Laurier University, is a CFP (Certified Financial Planner), and PMP (Project Management Professional).
David A. Crozier
President & Managing Director, Markel Canada
David A. Crozier is the president and managing director of Markel Canada Limited, a commercial specialty segment, casualty and environmental insurer writing on behalf of Markel Syndicate 3000 at Lloyd’s. He and his team are responsible for underwriting, marketing, claim and administrative operations of Markel in Canada.
From 2013-2018 Dave was president and chief executive officer for Everest Insurance Company of Canada, and previous to that Senior Vice President of Operations at Economical Insurance, where he was also president, Economical Financial, chairman of Family Insurance Solutions of Vancouver, and vice chairman of Mattei Insurance Services of Seattle. He joined Economical in 2006 from Chubb Insurance Company of Canada, where he had most recently been vice president, prairies. Through his career at Chubb he held positions of increasing responsibility that include manager of an energy, property & marine department in Vancouver, regional marketing & sales manager for western Canada and vice president of personal insurance in Ontario. He began his career with Continental Canada (now Northbridge Insurance) in 1992 as a commercial underwriter in the Toronto and Vancouver offices.
Dave was co-founder and a member of the board of directors of Slingshot Communications Inc., a marketing and communications company. He has also served as member of the Governing Committee of the Nuclear Insurance Association of Canada and been involved as a member of the Board for various charitable and not-for-profit organizations.
With a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Guelph, Mr. Crozier also holds both his Chartered Insurance Professional and Canadian Risk Management designations.
SVP & CIO, RSA
John Elliott has more than 20 years of experience overseeing large international technology teams within the financial services and insurance sectors. Since he completed a career as an officer in the US Army, his roles have included senior IT and business roles, focused on insurance, financial services, and risk management.
John is currently the CIO and SVP of RSA of Canada.
Over these diverse assignments, John developed deep expertise in IT strategy and execution, infrastructure and operations management, application development management and transformation. He holds a Bachelors in Mathematics from the United States Military Academy at West Point, a Masters of Science in Computer Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, a Masters of Science in Mathematics from MIT and a Masters in Computer Science from NYU Polytechnic.
VP - Marketing, Hubio Technology
David is the Vice President of Marketing with Hubio Technology, a technology firm that develops solutions for P&C insurers.
Twenty years of experience with small, growth-focused software firms provided David with experience in actions that build value and growing revenues. Wearing many hats, his background also includes direct sales roles, customer account management activities, and overall customer experience management.
He is passionate about bringing the best tech solutions to the insurance sector, and has provided the industry thought leadership, authoring and publishing numerous white papers, articles, and research studies.
David has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto, and an M.B.A., from the Schulich School of Business.
President, Echelon Insurance
Robin joined Echelon Insurance as President in August 2019, bringing with him nearly 35 years of insurance industry experience.
During his career, Robin has built a demonstrated track record of contributing to growth and profitability, both in personal and commercial lines. Before joining Echelon, Robin was responsible for Business Development and Risk Management for both CAA Insurance and Orion Insurance. Prior to this, he held different senior leadership roles in Underwriting, Operations, Finance, and Distribution, for a Specialty Insurer among other National companies.
Robin has a Bachelors degree in Mathematics as well holds the designations Fellow Chartered Insurance Professional (FCIP) and Canadian Risk Manager (CRM).
SVP and Chief Transformation Officer, Economical Insurance
With more than 25 years of senior leadership experience, Alice is the driving force behind implementing leading-edge technologies at Economical. She’s excited about our bold vision and is passionate about embracing new innovations and processes that will take Economical to the next level.
Alice has an MBA from the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University and was recognized twice as one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network.
Alice and her team take our values to heart. Having delivered a best-in-class digital experience for Canadians through Sonnet, they're working hard to replace a number of complex broker systems – transforming the way we work, and supporting long-term growth opportunities for our broker partners.
President, Lloyd’s Canada
Marc is the President of Lloyd's Canada. He is responsible for the development and execution of a wide range of business strategies and operational initiatives.
Marc brings a deep understanding of the financial services industry, and expertise in critical areas including strategic planning, leadership, and employee engagement.
Mr. Lipman holds a Masters of Laws degree, with an award of Merit, from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Osgoode Hall Law School, in Toronto, Canada.
Andrew is an InsurTech influencer and keynote speaker who has a passion for growing the insurance industry through digital (www.andrewlo.ca). He is also a Business Strategy Advisor for Ryerson University’s DMZ, helping to develop digital entrepreneurs and startup companies at the #1 university incubator in the world.
Andrew was the CEO of Kanetix Ltd. before it was acquired by Ontario Teacher’s Pension Plan. He led all digital innovation and growth for Kanetix Ltd. – Canada’s largest digital customer acquisition platform for insurance and financial services.
VP - Business Intelligence & Analytics, Gore Mutual
Jamie McDougall is Vice President of Business Intelligence & Analytics at Gore Mutual Insurance Company. Established in 1839, Gore Mutual is Canada's oldest Property & Casualty insurance company.
Jamie began his work with Gore Mutual in 2000 and has held various positions including: Vice President, Claims; Vice President, Underwriting Solutions; Vice President, Personal Insurance Solutions; and recently Vice President, Business Intelligence & Analytics. As the Vice President, Jamie is accountable for all actuarial and business analytics resources and keeping Gore Mutual at the forefront of developments in this dynamic area of the industry.
Jamie holds his MBA degree from the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary. His prior work experience includes coaching executives across multiple industries, as a Management Consultant in process improvement, performance management and strategy. Outside of the office, one will often find Jamie, a certified SCUBA instructor, underwater enjoying a dive or helping others discover this fascinating hobby.
Managing Director, Canadian Broker Network
Lorie is an accomplished business leader with 25+ years of insurance brokerage and business management experience.
Currently, Lorie is Managing Director of the Canadian Broker Network, the leading network of independent insurance brokers. Together, CBN members represent more than $1 billion in property casualty premiums as well as employee benefits, life and financial services with over 50 offices across Canada and more than 1,500 employees.
Prior to her current role, Lorie has served as the senior staff member for Canadian and international brokerages. Lorie also founded and managed a company which provided assessments, training, and consulting services for brokers, insurers, technical consultants and industry associations.
Throughout her career, Lorie has served on Boards and Committees for insurance industry associations, and not-for-profit community and health service groups. Lorie currently sits on the Insurance-Canada Advisory Board.
VP - Sales & Business Development, Intact Insurance
Jeff Walker is Vice President of Sales & Business Development for Ontario, Western and Atlantic Canada at Intact Insurance. He is responsible for the marketing and communications initiatives for all lines of business in the region for Intact Insurance, Novex and Jevco Insurance Company.
He joined Intact in September 2012 to lead the Ontario Division’s Sales & Marketing strategy.
Prior to joining Intact, Jeff was the Assistant Vice President, Marketing & Business Development for Jevco Insurance Company where he was responsible for all aspects of sales, marketing & communication on a national basis.
President - Insurance, CAA Club Group of Companies
Matthew is a dynamic, team-oriented, and innovative President who possesses excellent interpersonal, analytic, and project management skills. Over Matthew's 16 years of insurance experience he has successfully led teams of underwriters, actuaries, claims and sales/service professionals in product design, rate making and the development of risk models. Matthew has been honoured to speak at several insurance industry events about his success and experiences in implementing industry leading technologies.
Matthew holds a Bachelor in Business Management degree; completed the Business Design Program at the Rotman School of Business, and is a Chartered Insurance Operations Professional. He is also currently completing his Certified General Accountant designation.