Interview with LAMP Alumni

This is the first in a series of interviews with LAMP alumni on their experience in the industry, PLUS, and the program. For more content on diversity & inclusion from PLUS, you can read posts here on the PLUS Blog, watch our member webinar series, or attend the upcoming PLUS Foundation webinar, An Open Conversation About Race in the Professional Liability Industry, on Wednesday, October 14th at 10:00 a.m. ET (registration opening soon).

Jeremy J. Zacharias

Jeremy is a member of the Professional Liability Department of Marshall Dennehey where the focus of his practice is representing and defending attorneys, accountants, insurance producers, corporate directors and officers, and other licensed professionals.

Jeremy is an active member of PLUS where he is an alumni of the Leadership and Mentoring Program (LAMP). Through PLUS, Jeremy also completed training at PLUS University and served as a member of a PLUS task force to revitalize the curriculum of PLUS University to address current trends in the professional liability insurance marketplace. Jeremy also currently serves on the Future PLUS committee and the PLUS Conference Content committee.

In 2011, Jeremy earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a co-concentration in Finance and Business Law, graduating magna cum laude from Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business. In spring 2014, Jeremy earned his juris doctor from the Rutgers University School of Law, graduating cum laude and in the top 15 percent of his class.

Jeremy is admitted to the bars of the states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania and is admitted to practice in federal court in the District of New Jersey.

How did you get your start in professional liability insurance?

I began my career in the professional liability insurance industry as an Associate for Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, P.C. in Mount Laurel, NJ. I focus my practice in representing and defending attorneys, accountants, insurance producers, corporate directors and officers, and other licensed professionals.

How did you hear about LAMP? What made you decide to apply?

I became a member of PLUS one year before I decided to apply for the LAMP program. I saw the wide network that PLUS offered and knew that as an Indian American attorney, I was under-represented in the legal and insurance community. I saw LAMP as an opportunity to learn more about the professional liability insurance industry and to connect with my peers in different avenues to grow my network. Through LAMP, I have made countless contacts and expanded my network with people across North America. Without LAMP, I would not have had this opportunity.  

What was the most valuable aspect of the programming (e.g. orientation, webinars, mentor, attending PLUS events, relationships with your cohort)? Why?

For me, the most valuable aspect of the LAMP programming was the relationships formed with my cohort and expanding this network with each incoming cohort. Each cohort includes individuals that are ambitious in their careers and include like-minded professionals. LAMP offers a diverse group of individuals that share a commonality to transcend the professional liability insurance marketplace.

What takeaway(s) from the program have you implemented in your own life/career and how has it benefitted you?

The key takeaway that I took from LAMP was to see beyond merely practicing law. As a member of the professional liability insurance industry, I now see my role as a defense attorney as a collaboration with other professionals, including insurance claims representatives, brokers and underwriters.

How has LAMP changed your career path?

LAMP has allowed me to expand my network within the professional liability insurance industry while learning more about this industry. In turn, I am a more effective lawyer and advocate for my clients since I now understand the case reserving mindset and appreciate the insurance and claims strategies utilized.

How do you think LAMP has, or will, impact the PLUS community? Impact the industry?

LAMP has impacted that PLUS community by placing a focus on diversity and gave a voice to under-represented insurance professionals in the industry. The landscape in the professional liability insurance industry is changing, and under-represented professionals offer a unique voice and mindset to any company. LAMP has placed a spotlight on this and this program continues to effectuate change and acceptance within this industry.

What else do you think companies and individuals should be doing to bring about change?

Companies, in order to stay competitive in the market, must promote and celebrate diversity and must focus on the value professionals adds to an organization, regardless of race, color, or religion, among others.

What advice would you give to someone from an underrepresented group who is thinking of entering professional liability insurance? Someone who is in the field but looking to advance their career?

I often advise individuals new to the professional liability insurance to get involved with as many opportunities as possible. PLUS offers various opportunities at the local and national level to stay engaged with the current insurance trends and to fine-tune your professional network. I joined PLUS not knowing how useful my membership would be to my career as an attorney. However, getting involved with LAMP and later taking on a leadership role with PLUS has allowed me to maximize my membership benefit. I would encourage anyone seeking to learn more about this rewarding industry to get involved with PLUS and volunteer to offer a unique insight into this growing industry.

Introducing the 2021 LAMP Cohort

We are proud to introduce the 10 outstanding PLUS members who have been selected for the 2021 Diversity Leadership & Mentoring Program (LAMP) Cohort.

David Choi, Goldberg Segalla, LLP, Los Angeles, CA
Lawrence Conmigo, Intact Insurance (Frank Cowan Group), Toronto, Canada
Juan Luis Garcia, Skarzynski Marick & Black LLP, New York, NY
Tiffany Kwan, Liberty Mutual Canada, Toronto, Canada
Jeffrey Lange, Aon Plc, New York, NY
Trent Lightbourne, Bowring Marsh, (Bermuda) Ltd, Hamilton, Bermuda
Jean Liu, Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck LLP, Chicago, IL
Michael Ché Murray, Chubb Bermuda, Hamilton, Bermuda
Tiffany Park, Hiscox, Los Angeles, CA
Renee Wang, Marsh Canada Limited, Montreal, Canada

LAMP is a one-year leadership development training program for PLUS members from diverse and traditionally under-represented groups within the professional liability insurance industry. The curriculum focuses on leadership coaching and participants are matched with senior-level PLUS members who serve as mentors throughout the duration of the program.

Cohort members will be introduced during the 2020 PLUS Conference and have the opportunity to participate in signature PLUS and PLUS Foundation events, including the PLUS Conference, national Symposia, educational programs and the RPLU designation. This fifth cohort of the LAMP program joins the 48 alumni who have gone onto leadership positions through PLUS and the PLUS Foundation and have experienced success and growth within their organizations.

Congratulations to our 2021 LAMP Cohort! We look forward to seeing you succeed.

PLUS Announces the 2020 LAMP Cohort

2020_LAMP_SharedSlides

The Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) has selected 10 members for the 2020 Diversity Leadership & Mentoring Program (LAMP) cohort.

LAMP is a one-year leadership development training program for PLUS members from diverse and traditionally under-represented groups within the professional liability insurance industry. The curriculum focuses on leadership coaching and includes matching participants with senior-level PLUS members who have agreed to serve as mentors throughout the program.

PLUS sponsors the cohort’s involvement in signature PLUS events including the PLUS Conference and national Symposia as well PLUS educational offerings and RPLU designation exams. The 2020 cohort will begin their program experience at the PLUS Conference November 11-13, 2019 in Washington D.C.

“This fourth cohort continues PLUS’s efforts to support professionals with a variety of backgrounds and integrate them more deeply into PLUS and the professional liability industry. Past participants in this program not only gained valuable new skills and connections, but many now have active roles in PLUS as volunteers, leaders, and subject matter experts. We anticipate that continued involvement from this year’s outstanding cohort,” said PLUS Executive Director Robbie Thompson.

The 2020 cohort includes:

  • Sherry Chen, Underwriter, Liberty Mutual Canada – Toronto, Canada
  • Nicole Ferguson, National Accounts Manager, McGowan Program Administrators – Framingham, MA
  • Christopher Fortson, RPLU, Lead Associate/Broker, Willis Towers Watson – Boston, MA
  • Alex Munguia, Claims Director, Lancer Claims Services – Orange, CA
  • Binh Nguyen, Senior Account Executive, Breckenridge Insurance Services LLC – Irving, TX
  • Chris Nwabueze, Associate Attorney, Chasnoff Mungia Pepping & Stribling, PLLC – San Antonio, TX
  • Venecia Snaith, Lead Senior Underwriter, Ullico Casualty Group Inc. – Silver Spring, MD
  • Eva Sullivan, Senior Associate, Wood Smith Henning & Berman LLP – New York, NY
  • Keana Thompson, Underwriting Director, CNA – Chicago, IL
  • Eric Tu, Senior Underwriter, AXIS – Toronto, Canada

Further details on the program can be found on the PLUS website here.