Economical Insurance
 
 

About Economical

Executive Team Profiles


Karen Gavan

 

Karen Gavan, FCPA, FCA, ICD.D

 

President and chief executive officer

 

Karen was appointed president and CEO in June 2011. Previously, she was a director of Economical Mutual Insurance Company since 2008 and served as Chair of the Special Committee with responsibility for Economical's demutualization since 2010. She was formerly the chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Transamerica Life and AEGON Fund Management Inc. Prior to that, she held senior management positions with Imperial Life Assurance Company and with Canada Life Assurance Company during its demutualization.


Jennifer Allan

 

Jennifer Allan, BBA, MA, MHRM, CHRP, CCP

 

Vice-president, HR programs and corporate communications

 

Jennifer's portfolio includes responsibility for the firm's HR programs and corporate communications, public relations and media relations. She has been with Economical since 1994 and was formerly assistant vice-president, corporate human resources services.

 

Jorge Arruda

 

Jorge Arruda, B.Comm.

 

Senior vice-president, corporate strategy

 

In April 2014, Jorge began leading our corporate strategy office and a number of key strategic initiatives, including stakeholder management as we progress towards demutualization. Prior to this, he was senior vice-president, sales, distribution and underwriting operations. He was previously the chief transformation officer; senior vice-president, SBU and delivery management; senior vice-president, operations; and vice-president, claims. Jorge has more than 25 years of insurance industry experience and has been with Economical since 1995.

 

Aneeta Bains

 

Aneeta Bains, B.Sc.

 

Vice-president, information technology

 

Aneeta is responsible for the service delivery and support of Economical's applications and technologies, as well as leading the IT Business Transformation program. She also has responsibility for enterprise architecture, business analysis, software development and quality assurance best practices throughout the IT organization. She joined Economical in May 2013 with more than 20 years' experience in the IT industry, including executive and senior consulting roles with Deloitte, CGI, Nortel Networks and MD Physician Services.

 

Ed Berko

 

Ed Berko, B.Sc, MBA

 

Senior vice-president and chief risk officer

 

With more than 25 years of enterprise risk management experience, Ed is accountable for developing and maintaining comprehensive processes for identifying, assessing, measuring, monitoring, reporting and, where appropriate, reducing pertinent risks that could interfere with the company's objectives and goals. Reporting to the president and CEO, he chairs the Management Risk Committee and is a key member of the Executive Committee. He most recently served as the chief risk officer at Protective Life Insurance Company and Protective Life Corporation. Prior to that, he was chief risk officer for the Investments Department at MetLife.

 

Pamela Derksen

 

Pamela Derksen, BA, FCIP 

 

Vice-president, commercial insurance

 

Pam has leadership accountability for Economical's commercial insurance portfolio and leads the development and implementation of the commercial insurance strategy. She also has oversight of Western General. Previously, Pam was manager of commercial insurance in the Western region and was most recently division vice-president of Western General.

 

Innes Dey

 

Innes Dey, B.Sc. (Hons), LL.B

 

Senior vice-president, chief legal officer and corporate secretary

 

Innes oversees Economical's legal function and provides counsel on capital markets, M&A, strategic investments, regulatory affairs, corporate governance and non-claims litigation. He joined Economical with more than 14 years of legal experience and 10 years in advisory and senior management positions within Canada's financial services sector. He previously served as vice-president, corporate affairs and corporate secretary of Northbridge Financial Corporation, and as a senior legal advisor to Canada Life Financial Corporation during its successful take-over defence and privatization.

 

Cheryl Edmunson

 

Cheryl Edmunson

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution, B.C.

 

Based in our Vancouver branch, Cheryl reports to Javier Ibanez and is accountable for the company's sales and distribution operations in B.C., focusing on our profitable growth strategy for the province. She also oversees Family Insurance Solutions, the largest provider of private optional auto insurance in British Columbia. Cheryl has over 25 years of experience in the property and casualty industry, including various leadership positions in claims, underwriting and operations.

 

Wayne Edwards

 

Wayne Edwards, FCAS

 

Vice-president, corporate actuarial

 

Wayne comes to Economical from Partner Reinsurance Company where he worked for nearly 10 years as a senior actuary in the group actuarial unit in their Bermuda office. He has broad experience in capital allocation and return modeling, loss reserving and financial reporting. His knowledge of reinsurance pricing and underwriting and experience with acquisition valuation and integration from the corporate actuarial perspective are an asset to Economical.

 

David Fitzpatrick

 

David Fitzpatrick, BA

 

Vice-president, Economical Financial

 

David has more than 25 years of experience, the majority having been gained in the general insurance industry. He joined Economical in 1995, and has held positions as the vice-president, human resources; vice-president, field operations; vice-president, corporate services; and vice-president, sales and distribution.

 

Michael Gagnier

 

Michael Gagnier, B.Comm.

 

Senior vice-president and chief information officer

 

With more than 22 years of leadership experience, Michael is highly skilled in process re-engineering, organizational design and technology in the financial services, retail, manufacturing, and software sectors. Michael most recently served as executive vice-president, sales with MD Management. Prior to that, he was the vice-president and chief information officer with MD Management and led their technology transformation. He also held executive-level IT positions with Novator, Citigroup and Indigo Books and Music.

 

Linda Goss

 

Linda Goss, B.Sc. (Hons), FCIA, FCAS

 

Senior vice-president and chief actuary

 

Linda was appointed to the position of senior vice-president and chief actuary in January 2005. Prior to this, she was the chief actuary. She joined Economical in July 2000 as the assistant vice-president, actuarial services and became vice-president, actuarial services in July 2001. Before joining Economical, Linda held positions with two other large insurers as assistant vice- president, actuarial services and vice-president, pricing actuary. Previous to those senior positions, she was a consulting actuary with a large actuarial consulting firm. Linda has more than 27 years of actuarial experience.

 

Robert Gow

 

Robert Gow, CCLA, CFE

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution, Ontario region

 

Robert Gow is responsible for Economical's sales and distribution operations in Ontario. On joining the company in 2006 until his current appointment in 2013, he grew and strengthened Economical's presence in the rapidly changing western Canadian market where he served as vice-president, Western region. With more than 35 years of insurance industry experience, Rob has held many executive level positions within the property and casualty industry.

 

Javier Ibanez

 

Javier Ibanez, BA, M.Ad.Ed

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution

 

Javier is responsible for national sales and distribution, which encompasses managing the effectiveness of the broker channel and broker solutions across Canada. Prior to joining Economical in November 2013, he held senior positions in the P&C industry including national sales for personal, commercial and specialty lines as well as broker distribution effectiveness. His experience also includes leading training initiatives in leadership, business development and broker education.

 

Karen Kaminska

 

Karen Kaminska, FCIP, CRM

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution, Atlantic region

 

Karen was appointed vice-president, sales and distribution for the Atlantic region in March 2014. She brings 25 years of industry experience to this role, and has been with Economical since 1994. Most recently, Karen led the Atlantic region claims team as manager, regional claims and has held previous underwriting leadership accountability at Economical Select.

 

Pamela Marson

 

Pamela Marson, FCIP

 

Vice-president, underwriting transformation

 

Formerly vice-president, personal insurance, Pam has  accountability for underwriting transformation with a focus on driving transformation to improve productivity. She also has oversight of Economical Select.

 

Philip Mather

 

Philip Mather, CA, B.Sc. (Hons)

 

Senior vice-president and chief financial officer, president of Economical Financial

 

As CFO, Phil provides the leadership team and the broader organization with strategic financial counsel and support and has overall responsibility for procurement and reinsurance. He is also president of Economical Financial, the company's broker financing arm. Prior to joining Economical in 2011, he was a partner in the audit and assurance group of global professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, specializing in financial services and, in particular, property and casualty insurance in which he has more than nine years' experience.

 

Rocco Neglia

 

Rocco Neglia, BA (Hons), CIP

 

Vice-president, claims

 

Rocco was appointed to the position of vice-president, claims in January 2005. He also has oversight and accountability for the claims operation at Family Insurance Solutions Inc. Prior to his appointment, Rocco was the national technical claims manager and was instrumental in developing and supporting Economical's claims strategy. He joined Economical in May 1996.

 

Michael O'Neill

 

Michael O'Neill, BA, MBA, CFA

 

Vice-president, investments

 

Appointed vice-president, investments in November 2001, Mike is responsible for Economical's investment activity and develops strategy to position investment activities and achieve growth and risk/return objectives for the short and long term. Prior to this appointment, Mike was the manager of fixed income.  Before joining Economical Mike was employed with investment dealer Gordon Capital and Royal Trust.

 

 

Hans Reidl

 

Hans Reidl, BBA, CA, CFA

 

Vice-president, finance

 

Hans brings strong operational expertise and experience in financial reporting within a public company environment, integral to the company's continued focus on demutualization and public company readiness. Reporting to the CFO, he leads the corporate financial accounting and reporting teams, the financial planning and analysis team and the finance operations function. He also provides oversight and support to the reinsurance and procurement functions. Prior to joining Economical, he was vice-president, finance at ATS Automation Tooling Systems where he acted as the finance lead for a number of divisions as well as having previous corporate controller responsibilities. 

 

Tom Reikman

 

Tom Reikman, B.Sc., MBA, CIP

 

Senior vice-president and chief operating officer

 

Tom has more than 22 years' experience in senior leadership roles and an extensive level of expertise in the property and casualty industry - including commercial and personal lines underwriting, marketing, and sales and distribution management. As COO, Tom is responsible for leadership of national underwriting and claims operations, marketing and business development. Most recently, Tom held various senior executive roles with Aviva Canada. Tom also worked previously for Economical Insurance in senior leadership roles between 1995 and 2006. 

 

Mayssa Rifaï

 

Mayssa Rifaï, BA, CIP

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution, Quebec region

 

Mayssa is responsible for Economical's sales and distribution operations in Quebec. Previously, she was regional vice-president, commercial insurance in Quebec. Before joining the company in 2010, Mayssa held a number of management positions with renowned insurers and brokerage firms, including Chubb Insurance Company of Canada, Travelers Canada and Marsh Canada Limited.

 

Chris Van Kooten

 

Chris Van Kooten, FCIA, FCAS

 

Vice-president, personal insurance, analytics and pricing

 

Chris has leadership accountability for Economical's personal insurance portfolio, including the development and implementation of the personal insurance strategy. He also has accountability for pricing and analytics, as well as oversight of Perth Insurance. His mandate supports the integration of head office underwriting, pricing and analytics, three critical business functions that will drive profitable growth through effective product and pricing strategies.  Since joining Economical in October 2008, he has served as  vice-president, corporate actuarial and vice-president, pricing.

 

Chris Weber

 

Chris Weber, BA (Hons), MA

 

Vice-president, sales and distribution, Alberta and the Prairies

 

Based in Calgary, Chris Weber is responsible for Economical's sales and distribution operations in the Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, focusing on our profitable growth strategy in the three provinces.  Chris joined Economical in 2001 and has held a number of senior leadership and executive roles, including vice-president, sales and distribution, Western region. Formerly vice-president, analytics, Chris helped establish business analytics across the organization. In late 2012 to early 2013, as vice-president, transformation, he played an integral role in the company's ongoing business transformation program.

 

Max Weis

 

Max Weis, B.Sc., MBA, CFA

 

Vice-president, corporate development

 

With many years of experience in senior leadership roles in corporate finance as well as sophistication in valuation and modeling practices, Max provides expertise and focus to Economical's increasingly sophisticated corporate development capabilities. Reporting to the chief financial officer, he is accountable for the ongoing development and implementation of the company's M&A strategy, strategic partnerships and key stakeholder relationships. Before joining Economical, Max held various roles with RBC Capital Markets, most recently as managing director in corporate finance where he advised on a range of public and private equity and debt transactions, acquisitions, mergers and other related transactions.