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Martin becomes the first woman to chair BFIS

Gail Martin has been appointed chairwoman of the Bermuda Foundation For Insurance Studies (BFIS) — the first female to hold the post.

The donor members of BFIS appointed Mrs Martin at the foundation's annual general meeting this week.

She is a vice-president and underwriter with Hannover Re and first joined the BFIS Steering Committee in 2002 and the board in 2006.

Outgoing chairman Michael Fisher said: “After being involved with BFIS since 2000 and serving as its chairman since 2011, I am very pleased to report that I leave the Foundation in good order.

“The efforts of our Finance Committee under the leadership of David Skinner in consolidating the investment portfolio allowed us to capitalise on improvements in the market and achieve a cash flow adjusted return of over 11 per cent for the 2014 financial year, allowing us to fund operations and even realise some growth in the overall portfolio.

“Although we continue to find that donations are well below historic levels, we are very pleased to receive first-time donations from newly formed companies, Hamilton Re and Watford Re.”

Mr Fisher noted that BFIS is most appreciative of not only the funding from our sponsors but also the volunteer hours which many of their representatives give to the Foundation.

To have their industry expertise so generously donated to BFIS is a unique and tremendous resource, one without which BFIS would not be able to function effectively.

“I am delighted to report that BFIS has now awarded more than $5 million in scholarships to 142 students, of which 102 are working in the insurance industry and 36 are still at university.”

He went on to say: “I am pleased to note the creation of the BFIS Alumni Association which comprises all our graduates as well as the students who took part in our intern programmes and who are working in insurance. Our intern programme ran successfully with a full complement of interns in four locations (Bermuda, Atlanta, Chicago and London). Since its inception in 2001 we have had almost 100 Bermudian students participate in these intensive programmes with almost all who have graduated now working in the insurance sector.”

This is also the first year that BFIS alumni will be joining the BFIS board of trustees — Stephen Jones (BFIS Scholar 1998) and James Botelho (BFIS Scholar 2002). Several BFIS alumni have already been serving on various BFIS committees for a number of years.

Brian Hall, founding chairman of BFIS, attended the AGM and said how proud he was of the many accomplishments of the Foundation and its growth since his first basic idea of assisting students to gain the level of education relevant to the insurance sector.

A cocktail reception attended by about 50 trustees, committee members, donor representatives and BFIS alumni followed the AGM.

New leadership: Pictured at the BFIS AGM are some of the attending BFIS trustees and committee members. From left (front row are David Skinner (treasurer), Carla Whitehurst (trustee), Gail Martin (chairwoman), Brian Hall (founding chairman) and Cathy Lapsley (BFIS executive director). On the middle row (from left) are Neil Anderson (Finance Committee), Nancy Wong (Finance Committee), Shelle Hendrickson (Scholarship Committee), Jane Bielby (BFIS administrator), Samantha Montgomery (Mentor Committee), James Botelho (trustee), Tim Davidson (Finance Committee). One the back row (from left) are Shareka Tucker (Alumni Committee), Terry Pimentel (trustee), Deniece Gordon (Alumni Committee), Stephen Jones (trustee), Jill Husbands (trustee), Carol Faries (Finance Committee)

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Published December 18, 2014 at 12:26 pm (Updated December 18, 2014 at 12:26 pm)

Martin becomes the first woman to chair BFIS

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