Category Archives: Appointments

Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Enters Marine Market in France

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Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance has launched a full line of marine insurance products in France and appointed Muriel Birre Julvécourt as Head of Marine.

The new marine offerings include: Inland Marine, Ocean Cargo, Stock & Transit, Project Cargo, Freight Forwarders Liability, Ports & Terminals, and Subsea Insurance.

“We are very excited to further round out our offerings for customers and brokers in France with marine insurance, backed by BHSI’s financial stability, long-view underwriting, and CLAIMS IS OUR PRODUCT® philosophy,” said François-Xavier d’Huart, Country Manager, France. “Muriel is well known in the local marketplace and we are excited to have her deep technical expertise and excellent leadership capabilities leading our entry into this new line.”

Muriel comes to BHSI with more than 25 years of marine underwriting experience. She was most recently Head of Marine at RSA Group. Before that, she held various management roles in Marine at Groupama Transport. She was a member of the Marine Committee of the French Federation for Insurance Companies (FFA) for nearly 10 years, and holds a master’s degree in Insurance Law from the University of Paris Panthéon Assas.

Muriel is based in BHSI’s office in Paris.

© 2021 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell a stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Lubrizol Appoints Its First Chief Diversity Officer

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As part of its ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion as a key enabler of business success, Berkshire Hathaway’s Lubrizol has appointed Cheree Aspelin as the company’s first Chief Diversity Officer. In this role, Aspelin will continue to advance the company’s organizational capability by further embedding diversity and inclusion (D&I) across Lubrizol’s workforce, culture, systems and processes.

Aspelin also will hold HR leadership responsibilities for culture, talent management, talent development and organization design and effectiveness.

Aspelin has been a tireless advocate for culture, diversity and inclusion throughout her career, most recently serving as senior director for Lubrizol’s culture and inclusion efforts. Her successful 25-year career has focused on culture, talent development, training, and change management roles, including leadership roles with BP and JP Morgan Chase.

The addition of Chief Diversity Officer is a significant step in Lubrizol’s on-going D&I journey. For years, the company has embraced policies and programs that recognize and nurture a diverse and inclusive workforce, including training related to bias and inclusion and a strong network of Employee Resource Groups. Forbes named the company as one of America’s Best Employers for Diversity in both 2019 and 2020.

The company believes additional improvements will lead to even greater innovation and success. The company’s D&I approach rests on three pillars:

• Owned by the Organization – All Lubrizol employees have a shared accountability to drive toward a more inclusive work environment. The company’s global D&I Council, Inclusion Advocates and Employee Resource Groups provide examples of shared ownership to raise awareness and offer opportunities for greater connection.

• Measured to Track Success – Many years of experience have taught us that we must have meaningful measurements to track success if we are to realize sustainable organizational improvement. The company adopted gender-based goals in 2019, committing to increase the percentage of women in senior leadership roles. In 2020, the company expanded its diversity and inclusion goals to address two additional areas of impact: increasing the representation of Black employees and Black senior-level leaders within the U.S. and expanding the geographic diversity of senior-level leaders across the company.

• Embedded into Systems and Processes – To be successful in these goals, diversity and inclusion are being further embedded into company systems and processes. The company has been updating and improving HR processes, including new ways of working related to internal job posting, candidate assessments and increased workplace flexibility options with the intention of attracting, retaining and promoting the best talent to help us achieve our business goals.

The company also has re-engineered its university scholarship and recruiting programs to ensure it is reaching more students traditionally underrepresented in the industry and is enabling hiring and promotion practices that help reduce bias and evaluate candidates in a consistent, objective and transparent manner.

“We are committed to building on the strength of our culture to ensure a truly inclusive environment where talented people can be their absolute best,” said Eric Schnur, Lubrizol Chairman, President and CEO. “An environment where different experiences, perspectives and ideas are not only welcomed, but celebrated. We are building a more capable company as a result, and Cheree’s appointment to Chief Diversity Officer furthers our commitment and will meaningfully advance our progress.”

© 2021 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Berkshire Hathaway’s CORT Announces New President/COO

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Berkshire Hathaway’s CORT, the nation’s leading provider of furniture rental and transition services, has announced the promotion of Mike Davis to President and Chief Operating Officer.

In his new role, Davis will be responsible for overseeing all operations and sales for CORT Furniture Rental, CORT Trade Show & Events, CORT Party Rental, 4SITE by CORT and Roomservice by CORT in the UK.

“Mike’s leadership experience across the organization gives him great insight and will assist driving client satisfaction and exceptional results across all of our businesses,” said CORT’s Chairman and CEO, Jeff Pederson.

Davis began his career with CORT in 1997 at CORT Furniture Rental in San Francisco. Over the years he has held executive leadership roles in both sales and operations, including Executive Vice President for CORT Furniture Rental and the Trade Show and Events Divisions. In 2016, Mike was promoted to Chief Operating Officer before his current promotion to President and Chief Operating Officer.

“In this new role I look forward to continuing to execute our long-term strategic plans as we recover from the impact of the pandemic,” said Davis. “We have an exceptional group of people at CORT, and I am confident in our ability to exceed our customers’ expectations as we grow and continue to adapt to their changing business needs.”

© 2021 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Appoints Brian Robb Head of Cyber/MPL/Tech in the U.S.

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Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance has appointed Brian Robb as Senior Vice President, Head of Cyber/MPL/Tech, in the U.S.

“We are pleased to welcome Brian to lead our Cyber, Miscellaneous Professional Liability & Technology E&O team in the U.S.,” said Anthony Tatulli, Head of Executive & Professional Lines, North America, at BHSI. “His expertise adds fuel to our efforts to expand our portfolios and deliver the sound, stable solutions customers are seeking now and for the long-term.”

Brian comes to BHSI after nearly 11 years at CNA Insurance, where his experience spanned both the underwriting and claims sides of the business. He was most recently Product Leader, Cyber/Media/MPL/Tech E&O. Prior to that, Brian held the positions of Cyber Industry Leader and Senior Claim Counsel, Global Cyber and Technology Claims, at CNA. He holds a master’s degree from City University of New York-Baruch College, Zicklin School of Business, and a law degree from Brooklyn Law School. He received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

© 2021 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Intero Appoints New President

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Berkshire Hathaway’s Intero has announced that Joe Brown has been promoted to President from his previous role of COO, a position he held for the last two and a half years.

Scott Chase has been promoted to COO and will combine this with his leadership role at Intero’s Los Altos office.

John Thompson, Intero’s prior President, has returned to his former role as Chief Culture Officer.

Joe Brown joined Intero in October of 2015 after a successful stint at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, where he held numerous management positions, including President and COO of Bay Area operations. During his more five years with Intero, Joe has solidified himself as a key executive and has been instrumental to the company’s continued success. In addition to his role as President, he will continue to manage the Willow Glen office, one of the top real estate offices in the nation. In his new role as President, he will report directly to CEO Brian Crane, and will oversee recruiting and retention; culture, and staff coaching for the company’s 22 corporate offices.

Scott Chase came on board with Intero in November of 2018, bringing more than 15 years of experience after a successful stint as regional sales manager at Opes Advisors. Scott has a business philosophy that centers on planning and continuous improvement in skills, systems and teams to take care of our customer’s concerns around real estate. In addition to his role as COO, he will continue to manage the Los Altos office, one of the highest producing offices in the United States. In his new role as COO, he will report directly to CEO Brian Crane and will drive strategic growth, partnerships and expansion of the Intero brand throughout Northern California.

John Thompson, a founder of Intero, has been the glue that has helped keep the culture of the company together for the last 18 years. John will use his experience, talent, and sense of humor as he revises his role of Chief Culture Officer. In this position, John will support agent engagement, company culture and manage special projects.

“In our 18 years as a premier real estate services company, we have never sat on the sidelines and waited for change to happen,” said Brian Crane, Intero’s Chief Executive Officer. “We know that our leadership is one of the keys to our success and having the right people in the right positions is critical to helping us reach our goals. I could not be prouder to have Joe, Scott and JT in these new roles and know they will help the Intero brand continue to grow in 2021 and beyond.”

Intero, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate and wholly owned subsidiary of HomeServices of America, Inc., is a real estate services company with its headquarters in Cupertino, CA, the heart of the Silicon Valley. In addition to their 18-office corporate footprint, they have a franchise network that is comprised of more than 50 affiliates located in Alabama, California, Nevada, Tennessee and Texas.

© 2021 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell a stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Appoints Tom Macfarlane to Lead Downstream Energy Property Business in Europe

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Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance is expanding its capabilities in Europe to underwrite Downstream Energy Property Insurance and has named Tom Macfarlane to lead this business segment.

“We are delighted that Tom is joining BHSI to develop our Downstream Energy business in Europe. He is a well-respected leader in the market and has a wealth of experience in the energy sector,” said Chris Colahan, Head of UK and Europe, BHSI.

“This is a significant step in continued build-out of our overall Property business. With Tom and his extensive expertise and knowledge at the helm, we look forward to building strong relationships with our customers and brokers in the energy sector,” said Sean Mannion, UK Head of Property, BHSI.

Tom comes to BHSI with over 40 years of insurance experience spanning both the underwriting and broking sides of the business. He has held various leadership roles in Energy Property at AIG, including Global Head of Energy. He was also previously Energy Broker and Managing Director at Marsh & McLennan Companies.

Tom is based in BHSI’s London office.

© 2020 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Appoints Team to Lead Entrance Into Executive & Professional Lines in France

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Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance is entering the Executive & Professional Lines market in France and has appointed Olivier Hamon as Head of Financial Institutions and Management Liabilities and Alice Batchili as Professional Indemnity Manager.

Olivier and Alice will spearhead BHSI’s launch of a full range of products in France, including D&O Liability, Financial Institutions D&O Liability, Professional Indemnity, Employment Practices Liability, Crime, and Cyber Insurance, with an initial focus on Corporate and Upper Middle Market risks.

“Unencumbered by legacy liabilities, and committed to disciplined risk underwriting, BHSI is well positioned to provide companies across France with stable and sustainable Executive & Professional Lines solutions,” said François-Xavier d’Huart, Country Manager, France, BHSI. “Olivier and Alice bring to BHSI extensive experience and the excellent capabilities and character that are a hallmark of BHSI’s global team. We are pleased to have them building our Executive & Professional Lines portfolio and our team in France.”

Olivier has more than 12 years of insurance and financial industry experience, with a focus on Financial Lines for commercial and financial institutions in France. Earlier in his career he was a Financial Analyst at Coface Holding. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics, with Honors, from University of Paris, Panthéon-Sorbonne, and a master’s in Finance from University Paris Panthéon Assas.

Alice comes to BHSI with more than 15 years of industry experience, spanning both the insurance and brokerage sides of the business, and extensive expertise in both Professional Indemnity and Cyber Insurance. She holds a master’s degree in International Management of Insurance from Ecole Supérieure d’Assurance.
Both Olivier and Alice will be based in BHSI’s office in Paris.

© 2020 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

BNSF Appoints New CEO

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BNSF has announced that Executive Vice President Operations, Kathryn M. Farmer, will become President and Chief Executive Officer on Jan. 1, 2021. As CEO, she will assume leadership of BNSF’s Board of Directors.

Carl R. Ice, current President and Chief Executive Officer, will retire at the end of 2020 and remain on BNSF’s Board of Directors as well.

Farmer has been with BNSF for 28 years, most recently serving as Executive Vice President, Operations since September 2018. In 1992, Farmer joined Burlington Northern as a management trainee and has held leadership positions in every major function of the company including operations, marketing and finance. Prior to her operations role, Farmer led BNSF’s largest business unit as Group Vice President, Consumer Products.

Ice has been with BNSF for 42 years. In 1995, he led a team that orchestrated the merger and subsequent integration of Burlington Northern Railroad and Santa Fe Railway. Since then, he has helped lead the company and culture into what has become the largest Class I railroad in North America. Ice has been integral to the development of the company’s operating and marketing plans.

“I want to thank all of the men and women of BNSF. I am proud of having worked with you and all of the things that we have accomplished together. One of the most important roles of a CEO is to ensure a strong succession plan is in place,” said Ice. “Katie and I have been working toward this plan for a long time. Katie has held many different roles at BNSF with an ever-increasing impact with each new role as she has built trust and confidence throughout BNSF. I am pleased for Katie and the organization knowing BNSF’s future is in good hands. Katie is a shining example of BNSF’s leadership model and BNSF will continue to build upon its legacy.”

As a long-time member of BNSF’s leadership team, Farmer said, “I am humbled and honored to be asked to lead this incredible company and its dedicated employees—men and women that I have worked alongside for almost 30 years. We are well-positioned in our approach to safety and meeting our customers’ expectations while having the necessary capacity to grow with our customers. BNSF has long been a cost leader and we will ensure that continues into the future. I look forward to continuing BNSF’s success.”

“Carl has had a huge impact on this company and this industry having served on BNSF’s leadership team for the entire 25 years of the company’s existence. I have great respect for him and he leaves BNSF well-prepared for the next 25 years,” said Greg Abel, Vice Chairman, Non-Insurance Operations, Berkshire Hathaway. “Katie has had a long career with multiple roles at BNSF which fits well with our efforts to develop our people. Katie’s proven leadership and passion and commitment make her perfect for the role. We’re thrilled that Katie is taking over the role and have the utmost confidence in both her and BNSF’s future success.”

Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett said, “BNSF is an iconic company and this is a historic day. Carl has been critical to BNSF’s success for a very long time. I thank him for his leadership and his accomplishments. We look forward to Katie’s leadership and more success. She possesses all of the qualities that make us excited about the future.”

© 2020 David Mazor


Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathawa, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell a stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Lubrizol Creates Corporate Ventures Group

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Lubrizol has formed Lubrizol Corporate Ventures group, which will be charged with growing the company in adjacent markets.

The group will be led by Deb Langer as Senior Vice President, Corporate Ventures, and includes innovators in Lubrizol’s walls working in partnership with inventors, start-ups and strategic minds and organizations to build new business opportunities that leverage the company’s strengths and enable sizable growth in new areas. Driven by a clear understanding of the markets across these opportunities, the Corporate Ventures team will work to address the unmet needs of those markets, utilizing Lubrizol’s extensive resources and expertise to develop, test, commercialize, and scale business opportunities to deliver sustainable growth.

Throughout her Lubrizol career, Deb has been on the forefront of growth and innovation, including imagining and building the origins of what is now Lubrizol Life Science, a business producing innovative science for beauty, home and healthcare applications. Most recently, Deb served as Corporate Vice President, Mergers and Acquisitions and Consumer and Market Insights, and has held a variety of positions throughout the company spanning business management and technology leadership roles.

The company also has appointed Elizabeth (Beth) Grove as Chief Sustainability Officer. Sustainability continues to be an underpinning of Lubrizol’s strategy and serves as a vital driver to the long-term health and growth of the organization. In her new role, Beth will propel the company’s broad focus on sustainability, including environmental, social and governance disciplines, as well as oversee government affairs and community engagement. Beth also will continue to serve as President of The Lubrizol Foundation.

Since joining Lubrizol in 2007, Beth has served in various roles, including Global Director of Sustainability and Compliance for Lubrizol Life Science and as the company’s Chief Litigation Counsel. Beth joined Lubrizol from the Federal Trade Commission, where she was a trial attorney in the Bureau of Consumer Protection. Prior to that, Beth was a litigation attorney with Jones Day.

Beth replaces Julie Edgar as Chief Sustainability Officer as Julie takes on an exciting new opportunity as Vice President, Transportation, in the Lubrizol Additives business.

In this role, Julie will be accountable for growth in our Lubrizol Additives Transportation business. During her 25 years at Lubrizol, Julie has held a number of technology management positions across the business in Asia, Europe and North America. As Lubrizol’s first Chief Sustainability Officer, Julie helped to fully embed sustainability across the business, including how the company innovates, designs and produces products. This focus will be critical as Julie advances Lubrizol’s mission to help the world Move Cleaner, enabling a 50% reduction in vehicle emissions by 2040.

© 2020 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

MedPro Group Appoints Rhonda Buege President of International Division

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Berkshire Hathaway’s MedPro Group, a global healthcare liability insurer, has appointed Rhonda Buege as President, MedPro International, effective October 19, 2020.

Based in London, Buege will lead MedPro’s efforts outside the United States to expand its growing global healthcare liability business on both company and Lloyd’s paper.

“Rhonda is a terrific addition to our existing MedPro International team, and will help bring our industry-leading solutions and service to even more healthcare providers outside the USA,” said Tim Kenesey, MedPro Group CEO. “She is a recognized leader in the London insurance market, and her experience and customer focus have earned the respect of clients, distribution partners and competitors.”

“I am absolutely delighted to join MedPro,” said Buege. “The opportunity to join the leadership team of a company focused on the healthcare sector is really exciting. I also look forward to becoming part of the larger Berkshire Hathaway family of companies, especially with its financial strength, long-term outlook, and focus on integrity.”

Before assuming her new leadership role at MedPro, Buege held a series of increasingly significant underwriting and management positions with a global insurance carrier. Working in London since 2007, she has focused on healthcare and life sciences throughout her insurance career of more than two decades.

© 2020 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.