The US Reinsurance Under 40s Group is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2018. Sean Ramlal, the organisation’s Fundraising and Technology Chair, tells Reactions about how the group helps its members and the wider industry as well how it will celebrate its 10 year anniversary.
– Sean Ramlal, Vice President, Treaty Underwriter – Reinsurance; QBE Re and Fundraising and Technology Chair at the US Reinsurance Under 40s Group
Being involved with the US Reinsurance Under 40s Group is probably one of the best things I’ve done for my career. Over the years, I have personally formed more relationships than I can count and learned so much about our industry and the people in it. It has afforded me the opportunity to gain board experience leading a nonprofit, travel internationally on educational tours of various reinsurance hubs, and make strong connections with industry executives and up and coming leaders. I’ve shaved my head for cancer research, been homeless for a night to raise awareness, and cleaned up parks around Manhattan.
Re Under 40s is a nonprofit founded in 2008 by a collective of young industry professionals based off a similar concept in London and Bermuda. The primary aim of the all-volunteer board is to provide educational, charitable, and networking opportunities for the future leaders of the reinsurance industry. From our first meeting of less than 20 people, our membership has grown to over 2,250 registered today. With members in 27 states and 15 countries, we have professionals representing nearly 350 companies who are benefitting from the many learning and networking opportunities we provide. Our members include underwriters, brokers, actuaries, claims professionals, lawyers, accountants, cat modellers, consultants, asset managers, and just about every other profession that touches the insurance and reinsurance industry. All are welcome to attend our events, regardless of age.
We create an environment for our members to advance professionally through education and relationship building. We hold regular panel discussions, presentations on topical issues, webinars, social and charitable events, an annual education tour, and distribute content through “Re-Act”, our news platform. Besides enriching knowledge, these all serve as a medium for members to form relationships early in their careers, with both their peers and the executives that support us. These business associations are critical to the future of any company and their employees. We like to think of it as building the network you might not even know you need.
Insurance is very much a people industry and knowing the party on the other side of a transaction is crucial to making effective business decisions. Additionally, we give back by fundraising and participating in events in collaboration with organisations such as St Baldrick’s, Covenant House, IICF, Junior Achievement of Greater Miami, Riverkeeper, and the NYC Food Bank.
One of the key focuses of the group is to address the generational gap in our industry. There was a time when many insurance companies had large training programmes which equipped today’s leaders with the tools they used to become successful. As budgets were constrained and competition for experienced talent grew, these new hire programmes began to disappear. The Re Under 40s seeks to fill the void left and promote the professional development of young talent in the industry and in academia.
We are one of the few, or perhaps the only, major reinsurance industry groups that does not charge for membership. Furthermore, we aim to make all events free to maximise attendance and encourage participation by members at all stages of their careers. Of course, this cannot be done without the support of our numerous sponsors. Fundraising is core to our group, and thankfully having a mission that serves the industry openly has made our sponsors more than willing to offer their support.
2018 marks the 10th anniversary of the group and we have a lot to look forward to! We’ve grown so much in the last decade with little sign of slowing down. The first half of the year is already busy with various educational events, including panels, webinars, and lunch and learns on topics such as blockchain and cyber liability. We’re also in the process of finalising our educational tour to Zurich and Munich and our inaugural Golf Social. With expansion to US insurance hubs like Philadelphia, Chicago, Miami and Morristown, we expect continued growth. We are also really excited about launching in Stamford this year! There are many social events in the pipeline, including the Frying Pan Summer Social, as well as charitable opportunities such as the annual St Baldrick’s Foundation head shaving event – where I plan to go bald for the 10th time!
This article first appeared in the March 2018 edition of Reactions. You can find out more information about the magazine by visiting www.reactionsnet.com