External forces are driving innovation and disruption in the insurance industry. Our faculty members will offer perspectives to give you and your peers fresh insights as you face these challenges and address the opportunities. Some have a long track record working in or with the insurance industry; some bring extensive experience in other industries to their current insurance positions; and others add a perspective based on careers elsewhere. All bring a wealth of expertise and experience to their sessions.
Below is the roster of confirmed faculty members. More participants will be added over the coming days.
Presenters, Panelists and Moderators
Partner and Chief Research Officer, Strategy Meets Action
- Session: The Shape of Insurance in Ten Years
Mark Breading, a Partner and Chief Research Officer at SMA, is a recognized expert in advanced technologies and their implications for the insurance industry. His specialty areas include the customer experience and analytics. He has exceptional knowledge and experience in many dimensions of the customer/producer experience, including omni-channel, customer communications, mobile technologies, CRM, digital content management, and contact centers. He has broad experience and insights in data and analytics, including business intelligence, advanced analytics, and big data.
Mark has more than 30 years of insurance and information technology experience in a variety of leadership roles. Mark is well known for his perspectives on innovative uses of technology in insurance and the future of the insurance industry. Mark leads the research program at SMA, and has exceptional knowledge and experience in all aspects of advanced technologies and solutions that provide value across the insurance enterprise – including analytics, customer communications, enterprise content management, telematics, and mobile technologies.
He has held both technical and business roles in sales, consulting, marketing, and business strategy, including roles as IBM's Global Insurance Strategist, Global Insurance Marketing Leader, and Director of Global Executive Conferences for insurance and banking. In these roles, he has advised C-level executives around the world.
Mark is a graduate of Bucknell University with a BSBA in Accounting and a graduate of IBM's Systems Research Institute with a major in Software Systems. He also holds an MBA in International Business from Liberty University.
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).
Senior Analyst - Insurance, Celent
- Session: Product Innovation: The Risks
Mike Fitzgerald is a senior analyst with Celent's Insurance practice and is based in Cary, North Carolina. He has specific expertise in property/casualty automation, operations management and insurance product development. Mike's research focuses on billing, business process and operations, social media use in insurance, and distribution management.
Mike brings extensive industry experience to the analyst role. Prior to joining Celent, he was vice president of enterprise underwriting solutions at Zurich North America, where he led the evaluation of technology alternatives to support a new underwriting product development process. He held a number of positions at Royal & Sun Alliance, including a field operations regional executive role. His technology implementation experience includes the installation and maintenance of billing, automobile policy administration, and workers compensation automation. In the 1990s, Mike led an initiative which delivered one of the first global online technical underwriting and claims learning platforms in the industry.
Mr. Fitzgerald has a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Davidson College and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. He is a Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).
Doug Grant has been helping the insurance industry in Canada make effective use of technology for many years. From a business-impact and application perspective, he has helped individual companies and cross-industry groups in both Property & Casualty and Life insurance.
The progress of technology from the the basement computer room to the desk-top terminal and PC, to portable laptops to smartphones and tablets and now BYOD has been a fascinating journey. Processes extended to business partners through connected systems has continued to improve efficiency and timeliness.
The web brought the customer directly into the equation. Social functions have enabled new levels of connectedness, triggering the current focus on customer experience and engagement, which can paradoxically both enhance loyalty and increase freedom of choice.
Doug is a founding partner in Insurance-Canada.ca, a leading Canadian Insurance resource centre for consumer and insurance professional alike. He organizes and hosts regularly scheduled Insurance-Canada.ca conferences and other events.
Married with two sons, Doug is a recent migrant from house to condo (too much stuff – not enough space), both in the heart of downtown Toronto.
President & CEO, Novarica
- Session: The New Insurance Order Value Chain
Matthew Josefowicz is the President and CEO of Novarica. He is an expert on insurance and financial services technology, with two decades of experience advising CIOs on IT strategy and solutions.
Matthew has written more than 100 reports on insurance technology issues and is the lead moderator of the Novarica Insurance Technology Research Council.
Prior to launching Novarica in 2007, he founded and led the global insurance group at analyst firm Celent and worked at D. E. Shaw & Co., LP.
Matthew holds a BA magna cum laude in Classics from Brown University.
Director - Strategic Initiatives, Wawanesa
Tyler Lanoway is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at Wawanesa Insurance. For the past number of years Tyler has been focused on leading the delivery of Wawanesa’s Strategic System Renewal portfolio. This portfolio covers Wawanesa’s core system replacement including development a Broker entry system (BluePass), implementation of a Broker Portfolio System (BlueTrack), and integration with a number of Broker Management Systems.
Tyler specializes leading in the delivery of large, complex and transformational initiatives at Wawanesa. He has over 25 years of experience in application delivery with a number of organizations in Winnipeg, including over 13 years at Wawanesa.
Tyler has a Bachelor of Sciences and Masters of Business Administration from the University of Manitoba. He is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).
President & CEO, aha insurance
Steve has more than 25 years of experience in the Canadian Home & Auto insurance marketplace. From underwriting, to portfolio management, to operational roles, with organizations ranging from Chubb Insurance, to RBC Insurance, Aviva and RSA, Steve’s path has gained him a familiarity with every facet of both brokerage operations and direct insurance operations. And on top of all that, he’s worked in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Waterloo, thus having the opportunity to see and work in a diverse number of settings and situations across the industry. Steve’s expertise is focused on driving change and developing unique and innovative ways to package and distribute insurance. At aha Steve is responsible for helping drive its strategic direction, develop and manage key partnerships, support the development and execution of the value proposition, and lead the team in building the unique culture that is fundamental to any start-up.
- Session: An Update from CES
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.
Jeroen Morrenhof is the CEO of FRISS. Jeroen and his team work to provide an innovative SaaS solution in the InsurTech space. FRISS supports insurers to:
- Generate profitable growth with an effective and efficient underwriting process;
- Prevent and detect fraudulent claims and therefore reduce loss ratio;
- Be and Stay compliant with all regulations regarding KYC, CDD and determining UBO; and
- Support an effective investigation process.
CEO, Digital MGA Marketplace Ltd.
Jeff believes in the broker channel. Getting ahead of the insurtech revolution, he co-founded Digital MGA to provide Canadian brokers with product, technology, and digital marketing enablement. Digital MGA offers the Apollo platform free to qualifying brokers. Apollo provides quote-bind-issue insurance products white labeled for broker's websites, helping them automate workflows and compete on the digital landscape. Jeff carries the vision of an industry where computers do the work so people can build relationships. With a background as a broker and strong insurance industry fundamentals, Jeff empowers producers and brokerages to reach their digital potential.
Jeff was Insurance Broker Magazine Top 10 Under 40, and recipient of the Insurance Business Magazine Young Guns Award in 2018. He writes professionally for several publications including the Edmonton Journal, Vancouver Sun, National Post, and the Vancouver Province.
President, K. Opheim Consulting Inc.
Bringing over 30 years of experience in the life and property-casualty fields of the Canadian insurance industry, Kim Opheim is trusted and relied on to help organizations through the challenges and obstacles that stop them from growing their businesses.
In building relationships, Kim uses effective project management and natural facilitation to build consensus, occasionally breaking a tense moment with a touch of humour.
Kim’s experience ranges from principal in running a brokerage, to IT Manager, to VP Business Development with one of Ontario’s largest P&C brokerages. More recently, as Product Manager, he helped guide the primary software solutions for one of the world’s leading providers.
Innovation and Transformation Strategist, Co.Point Labs
Anita is proven a leader in guiding companies in their effort to transform and innovate. She has worked with brands such as TD, The Co-operators, Brookfield, Intact, TED, and Cineplex Digital Media. Companies lean on Anita’s experience to inform and design a better world for their customers and build the road map to a more customer-centric organization. She helps them clarify their vision and build the tools necessary to bring this to life. Anita guides clients in enabling the implementation of initiatives that shape a new future. And thrives in helping leaders solve big, complex problems.
Director - IT and Data Strategy, Architecture, X by 2
Ahsan Siddiqi is Director, IT and Data Strategy, Architecture, at X by 2. With more than 20 years of global experience in various industries and technologies, he helps senior technology and business leaders with their IT & digital transformational journey:
- People, process, technology alignment to organizational objectives;
- Enterprise IT strategy, architecture, delivery planning and implementation;
- Modern data platforms & advanced analytics capability development;
- Transitioning core enterprise legacy technologies to modern solutions.
CEO, Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario
Colin Simpson is the Chief Executive Officer of the Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario (IBAO) where he leads the strategic vision and execution of the 12,000+ member organization.
A longtime proponent of the independent broker network and Canadian insurance landscape, Colin specializes in corporate transformation and change management. He has worked in the Canadian insurance industry for over fifteen years and is a seasoned Corporate Executive and Director. Recent roles include President & Chief Executive Officer of Intrinsync Insurance Solutions, Kingsway Financial Services and York Fire & Casualty Insurance.
Colin holds an Honours Degree in Business Law & Economics, a Master's Degree in Accounting & Finance and is a qualified CA (Scotland).
AVP - Claims Transformation & Strategy, Aviva Canada
- Session: Bringing Innovation to Claims
Jonathan Spinner is an insurance technology and innovation strategy leader inside the Claims business at Aviva Canada.
Jonathan applies his extensive background in technology strategy and delivery to the ongoing identification, assessment, and implementation of technology solutions to improve the Aviva claims customer experience, and to make it easier for claims staff to deliver that experience in ways that surprise and delight Aviva’s customers.
Partner, Director - Products & Services, Insurance-Canada.ca
Patrick has more than 25 years of experience enabling technology and electronic commerce in the insurance and risk management communities. Patrick is a Founding Partner of Insurance-Canada.ca, Inc., the premier source for Canadian information on insurance & technology.
Patrick currently serves as Insurance-Canada.ca's Director of Products and Services, and sits on the company's Advisory Board. He edits the Intersection, Insurance-Canada.ca's blog, produces and hosts on-line and in-person events, and develops bespoke offerings for Insurance-Canada.ca's clients.
Throughout his career, Patrick has held senior management positions with insurance companies, distributors, consulting firms, and technology solution providers. He serves on boards and committees of various industry associations.
Patrick authors articles for leading trade publications and has spoken at insurance and technology conferences in Canada, the US, UK, Europe, and Bermuda.
Bobbi and Patrick Vice enjoy living and working in the heart of downtown Toronto, Canada.
VP North American Insurance Programs, Accident Support Services International Ltd.
Rick Yates is the Vice President of North American Insurance Programs at Accident Support Services International Ltd., joining the company in March of 2017.
Rick brings over 25 years of experience in the Automotive and Insurance industry beginning in Vancouver and ending in Toronto. He has been an active member of the CICMA of Ontario since 2006 and President in 2010/2011 and continues to participate in the Annual Golf tournament as their MC. He is a graduate of the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) with a Business Management Degree in Computer programming. He helped develop and launch the first Auto Glass claims call center in Canada with Speedy Glass and grew it to two centers and over 40 Customer Service Representatives. He was the first Vendor Manager for TD Insurance and rose to the position of Vice President of Claims – Western Canada. Rick has also owned and operated CARSTAR Collision franchise locations in the past with his wife Wendy.