Zurich North America is the latest insurer to name a sustainability officer – an executive who leads corporate initiatives to help the company contribute positively to the environment.

Ben Harper will be Head of Corporate Sustainability. In this new position, Harper will be responsible for bringing Zurich’s employees and capabilities in synch to create innovations that advance the company’s sustainability priorities of workforce in transition, climate resilience and confidence in a digital society. Harper is to work closely with Zurich’s business units, functions, customers, government organizations, NGOs, industry groups and trading partners to influence, deliver, connect and prioritize the company’s current sustainability activities.

Zurich North America’s action in the sustainability arena follows similar moves by a number of carriers in recent months, including Liberty Mutual, Travelers and AIG.

Harper will bring to the newly-created position at Zurich North America more than 31 years of sustainability and insurance experience. He’s also been with Zurich for 18 years. Most recently, Harper served as the global environmental subject matter expert in Technical Underwriting and as head of the pollution team responsible for providing technical, policy, strategy and underwriting guidance in support of environmental coverages.

As well, Harper has also been active in Zurich’s climate, environmental, social and governance initiatives through product development, actuarial modeling, green investment advising and internal evaluations. He served as part of Zurich Group’s Climate Office from 2009 to 2013.

Harper will be based in Schaumburg, IL, and report to Chief Human Resources Officer Laura Rock.

Source: Zurich North America