People at IUMI – Isabelle Therrien

How long have you been associated with IUMI?

My first IUMI conference was at the technical committee level. It was held in Niagara Falls, Canada, in March 2014. I had just been nominated by the Canadian Board of Marine Underwriters (CBMU) to be their representative on the IUMI cargo committee. I’ve since attended the Hong Kong, Berlin and Genoa annual conferences.

What is your IUMI role today and what does it involve?

I am currently a member of the cargo technical committee and will be moving into the role of Vice Chair in September 2017. I support the group by participating in group exchanges regarding different relevant cargo matters, providing topic ideas for the committee’s annual workshop, as well as providing current updates on cargo issues specific to Canada.

And what is your day job?

I’ve had the pleasure and privilege of working at Falvey Cargo Underwriting for the past 10 years. Falvey is a US- and Canadian-based marine managing general agent with expertise in the life science and technology sectors. My role as Vice President Underwriting is to manage our ever-growing book of business by strengthening and developing our relationships with insurance brokers across Canada. The other aspect of my role is to underwrite cargo risks moving globally via air, ocean, or land conveyances.

What benefits do you get from being associated with IUMI?

IUMI is a great platform to forge relationships with marine professionals all around the world. It is also a great forum to discuss emerging issues and establish that we, as a community, are thought leaders in our field. It is a fantastic forum for innovation and collaboration.

If you could change anything at IUMI what would it be?

IUMI’s image has changed tremendously over the past few years thanks to the efforts of the association’s leadership team. This change needed to happen in order to position IUMI as the leading global voice for marine insurers. In my involvement with the cargo committee, and as President of a member association, I’ve observed the positive changes and would encourage IUMI to carry on with their efforts. It is paying off!

How did you reach your current position in marine insurance?

I started my career in 1997 as an underwriting trainee in marine insurance. Throughout my career, I’ve had the benefit of having great mentors in the business. In my mind, there is no better recipe than to work hard, maintain integrity, remain humble, and as Gandhi once said: “Be the change you want to see in the world”.  We navigate in a constantly evolving industry… Facing our change can change everything!

And what do you do away from the office?

Outside of family time, which I adore, I also enjoy interior design. I’m a bit of a home renovation/DIY television show addict! I must admit that there are a few home decor projects in the works for the summer months! I also enjoy visiting new countries and enjoying the local culture.

Anything else you would like to add?

In my role as President of the Canadian Board of Marine Underwriters (CBMU), this year is an exciting one as we are celebrating our 100th anniversary. From its humble beginning in 1917 to what it has become today, the CBMU has continuously been the leading voice of the marine insurance industry in Canada.

The evolution of shipping over the past 100 years has been staggering. From ships’ primary energy sources shifting from coal to oil; then steam engines to diesel; from the introduction of new navigable routes to the completion of the St-Lawrence Seaway, and not to mention containerisation—the innovation that revolutionised and expanded the pathways of global trade.

These historical events (and many more) have shaped the marine insurance industry to what is has become today. The CBMU has brilliantly navigated through 100 years of history and we look at the road ahead with great excitement.