Joyce Trimuel/Photo Provided

New CNA Chairman and CEO Dino Robusto continues to put his stamp on the insurer, this time with the creation of a new executive position: chief diversity officer.

The Chicago-based property/casualty insurance carrier appointed former Chubb executive Joyce Trimuel to fill the slot. She will also carry the title of senior vice president and report to Liz Aguinaga, CNA’s chief human resources officer.

At Chubb, Trimuel was most recently vice president and Kansas City branch manager for Chubb. While there, the 20-year insurance and underwriting veteran founded the Lead.Link.Leverage initiative, offering more than 200 women business leaders in the Kansas City community professional career development.

Robusto said that focusing on diversity is good business.

“Diversity and inclusion leads to more innovation, more opportunities for all, better access to talent and better business performance,” Robusto said in prepared remarks. “By working with people from different backgrounds and with different experiences and working styles, we learn and obtain another point of view. Diverse views make for better decisions and thus drive a high-performance culture.”

Robusto added that Trimuel’s leadership “will allow us to meet the needs of customers from countless backgrounds and play a more vital role in our global communities.”

That may be, but diversity is something that continues to remain lacking in the insurance industry. About 85 percent of executive leadership at public insurance companies is male, and the number reaches nearly 75 percent at mutual insurers, according to an April 2016 study from McLagan, an independent subsidiary of Aon Hewitt, a division of Aon.

The McLagan study also points out that most company leaders are also white – 98 percent and 93 percent of executive management are Caucasian at stock and mutual companies, respectively. A majority also are age 45 or older.

Even so, there is an industry awareness of the issue and a movement to change. More insurance companies are increasingly focusing on making their workplaces more diverse, said Loretta Worters, vice president, communications for the Insurance Information Institute.

“More and more insurance companies have developed executive positions to guide their diversity agendas,” Worters told Carrier Management via email. “Insurers know it is important to have diversity officers and to have diversity and inclusion in their overall company culture. Inclusion is good business strategy. Companies that encourage diversity in the workplace inspire their employees to perform to their peak ability.”

Worters added that by focusing on diversity, companywide strategies can then be implemented, resulting in higher productivity, profit and return on investment.

The Insurance Information Institute recently launched a new website page that gives an overview of the industry’s diversity initiatives. Listed companies include Zurich, USAA, Travelers, State Farm, Progressive, Liberty Mutual, Farmers, Chubb, American Family, AIG and Allianz.

Robusto himself was a longtime Chubb executive when he was hired by CNA in late 2015 to take over for Thomas Motamed, who retired as chairman and chief executive officer in November 2016 after eight years. Robusto had been with Chubb for 29 years, and CNA has brought on a number of former Chubb executives in the wake of Robusto’s hiring.

Source: CNA Financial Corp.

Topics Carriers Chubb