The first edition of the Bermuda Risk Transfer Hall of Fame came in the October 2019 issue of Bermuda:Re+ILS, when the Bermuda Monetary Authority was celebrating its 50th birthday. At that time it had been some five decades since Fred Reiss started his pioneering work in Bermuda.
Reiss is just one of many individuals who have played important roles in the creation and evolution of Bermuda’s re/insurance industry, making it the world capital of risk transfer that it is today.
Our Risk Transfer Hall of Fame has commemorated some of these individuals, who stand as an inspiration for the younger people in the industry today. In this instalment, the Hall of Fame is paying tribute to some inspirational service providers. While not being re/insurers themselves, each has significantly contributed to the success of the re/insurance industry in his own way.
The Hall of Fame has commemorated executives who have retired or passed away, as well as those who are still working. The five chosen in this issue are all still very much active members of Bermuda’s re/insurance community, including a lawyer, two consultants, a lobbyist and a regulator. All of them are well-known on the Island, and do as much to make the industry what it is as any re/insurance executive.
This will be the last iteration of the Hall of Fame for now, but it may return in the future. If you wish to suggest someone you believe should be recognised for his or her contribution to Bermuda’s risk transfer market, please continue to send your suggestions to the editorial team, along with a couple of lines on your reasons. All suggestions will be considered in due course.
We hope the individuals profiled on the following pages inspire readers and remind everyone that any individual can make such a difference if they have the drive and innovative skills, and that no industry is an island: it takes many different businesses to make the re/insurance industry what it is.
Brad Adderley is a partner in Appleby’s corporate department in Bermuda. He has been a member of the insurance team for over 20 years, having joined the law firm in Bermuda in 1996. He is one of the best known insurance lawyers in Bermuda and is particularly knowledgeable about the insurance-linked securities (ILS) and alternative collateralised reinsurance markets, and sits on the steering committee of ILS Bermuda, the trade association for the ILS industry in Bermuda.
For journalists looking for commentary about a specific trend in ILS or re/insurance more generally, Adderley has made himself the first port of call for his approachability and insightfulness, and his clear and articulate style. He regularly provides commentary about new products and market trends, and speaks thoughtfully about how best to promote ILS globally, and to maintain Bermuda’s position as the global capital of ILS.
He has a keen understanding of the challenges, legal or otherwise, facing issuers and investors, as well as re/insurers, and is also well known for his regular participation as a speaker at industry conferences and seminars.
He has been a passionate defender of Bermuda’s approach to regulation when it has come under external pressure from the EU and other sources to change its approach and align with other regulators. In 2018 he wrote in Bermuda:Re+ILS: “Just because one jurisdiction has set up a structure in a particular way doesn’t mean it’s the right way.
“We should be able to look at all the other jurisdictions we compete with and be flexible enough to say that we will do the best we can to pick the best things from each jurisdiction in order to have the best regulation in Bermuda.”
Adderley regularly appears in major insurance transactions and is well regarded for his deep knowledge of reinsurance, securities and insurance company formation mandates. He has advised clients on a wide range of transactions including catastrophe bonds, special purpose insurers, sidecars, life insurance securitisations, and other fully collateralised structures.
He is a member of Appleby’s global technology and innovation team, providing advice in connection with all aspects of initial coin offerings and the carrying on of digital asset business.
David Brown is a senior partner at EY Bermuda and regional insurance leader for Bermuda, the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands.
Brown joined EY in 1989 and spent time in the Dallas, Boston and San Antonio offices before moving to Bermuda, having previously served as leader of the US southwest region insurance practice and southwest region financial services office assurance practice.
At EY Bermuda Brown is focused on Securities and Exchange Commission registrant re/insurance companies, asset management and diversified financial services companies. Since becoming the regional insurance leader he has been a committed advocate for the Bermuda re/insurance industry.
As the leader of one of the big consultancies in Bermuda Brown has a keen understanding of the broader macro trends in the economy and financial services, and how these are likely to impact Bermuda. He has advised on and written about the impact of digitisation and new technology, mergers and acquisitions and the need to nurture human capital on the island, to encourage young Bermudians to come into the industry and become the re/insurance executives of the future.
“Many people say that only in Bermuda does an elementary school child know what an actuary is, and that an actuary or underwriter has ‘rock star’ status,” he wrote in an article in Bermuda:Re+ILS in 2019, capturing the zeitgeist of the Island.
“This talent has been key to the development of new insurance and reinsurance coverages where, in addition to its leadership position in property and casualty coverages, and the growing life sector, Bermuda continues to lead the insurance-linked securities market, where risk is matched with alternative capital sources.”
Brown serves on the board of the Association of Bermuda International Companies, supporting international business of all types on the Island. He serves on the board of the Masterworks Museum of Art, supporting the education and appreciation of art in Bermuda.
Brown said: “I enjoy working with EY people and EY clients together to solve the most complex challenges. We build a better working world by contributing to a financial services and re/insurance industry that is strong and innovative.”
He attended Texas A&M University and is a licensed CPA in Texas, Massachusetts and Bermuda.
Jeremy Cox is the executive chair at the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA), with overall responsibility for all of its supervisory activities, including the supervision of not only insurance companies but banks, trust companies and investment businesses. He is also chair of the BMA’s board of directors.
Bermuda has long seen the quality of the Island’s regulation as a significant reason for the success of its re/insurance industry. Cox has played a huge part in that, having overseen Bermuda’s re/insurance regulation for more than 20 years.
He joined the BMA in 2002 as executive director and supervisor of insurance, before he was promoted to deputy chief executive officer in 2008, and then to chief executive officer on January 1, 2010. He was named as executive chair in 2019.
Cox, who is due to step down from his role at the BMA in 2021, has overseen a period of extraordinary success for Bermuda’s re/insurance industry. During his tenure at the BMA Cox has overseen the achievement of full equivalence with Europe’s Solvency II regime and helped to establish the Island as the world’s largest jurisdiction for captives, hosting more than 700 captive insurance companies.
He has been a vocal advocate of transparent collaboration as a regulatory style, once telling a PwC insurance conference in Bermuda: “Over the years we’ve developed an enabling consultative culture. This empowers both the regulator and the regulated. It underpins our dialogue and has nurtured a strong working relationship with the financial service industry.”
He has argued that this approach differentiates Bermuda from other insurance jurisdictions, giving businesses in Bermuda a relatively high degree of certainty that has allowed the industry on the Island to thrive.
Cox began his career at Arthur Andersen & Co in Bermuda as a staff and then senior auditor. He began working as an insurance division technical officer for the Bermuda government’s Registrar of Companies department in 1993, and was promoted to inspector of companies and then registrar, responsible for providing technical support to the Minister of Finance on all insurance-related matters.
He had graduated cum laude from Northeastern University with a BSc in finance and insurance in 1989 and earned his designation as a certified public accountant in 1995.
Bermuda:Re+ILS is far from the first to honour Cox’s contribution to Bermuda’s re/insurance industry. In 2015 and 2016, Cox received the Bermuda Insurance Institute Leader of the Year award. In 2019 he was awarded the Fred Reiss Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions to Bermuda’s insurance industry and other financial services sectors, becoming the fourth person to receive the award.
In 2020 he was named as a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) as part of the 2020 Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
John Huff is a lawyer by training and background who for nearly three years has been the leading voice advocating for the Bermuda re/insurance industry in his role as president and chief executive officer of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers (ABIR).
His tenure as the head of ABIR began on January 1, 2018, replacing Brad Kading who also did much to raise ABIR’s profile during his 12 years at its helm. On taking the post Huff was widely seen as one of the few candidates able to fill his predecessor’s shoes, and made a point of promising to continue building on the foundations that had been laid at the trade association.
Since then Huff has been directing ABIR’s worldwide public policy initiatives and making himself a spokesperson for the industry on a wide range of issues.
Huff’s career began at the law firm Field Gentry and Benjamin where he started as an associate in 1992, before being made partner. In 1998 he joined GE Insurance Solutions as a senior vice president, where he spent nearly eight years as a claims counsel and claims leader. In 2006 he joined Swiss Re, before his career took him into academia as an adjunct professor, first at Washington University School of Law in St Louis and then the Saint Louis University School of Law.
During that time he was named director of the Missouri Department of Insurance, in 2009, holding that position for eight years, while between 2009 and 2017 he also sat on the board of trustees at the Missouri Consolidated Healthcare Plan.
This period overlapped with a stint at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the US standard-setting and regulatory support organisation, of which he became president in 2016. In that role he started building up his familiarity with Bermuda, one of the few markets designated a qualified jurisdiction by the US and one with which US state regulators have excellent working relationships.
At this time Huff worked on several bodies, including the NAIC International Insurance Relations Task Force; the US Financial Stability Oversight Council; the NAIC Financial Regulation Standards & Accreditation Committee; the NAIC Reinsurance Task Force; the NAIC Governance Review Task Force; the NAIC Industry Liaison Committee; and the NAIC Financial Stability Task Force.
In June 2017 he joined Dentons in Kansas City as a partner in the insurance and regulatory practice, but that stay proved a short one as in January 2018 he took the job of running ABIR.
Huff earned his JD from Washington University School of Law and holds a MBA from St. Louis University and a BSBA from Southeast Missouri State University.
Arthur Wightman is the territory leader for PwC Bermuda and leads markets and the insurance industry sector for the region.
Wightman is a PwC-accredited transaction services partner and part of PwC’s global re/insurance sector leadership team. He has worked with global companies in Bermuda, the UK, Continental Europe and the US and has built up extensive audit and advisory relationships across the sector.
In his role, advising clients on issues including strategy, corporate acquisitions and disposals, assurance, commercial due diligence and transaction services, performance improvement, risk management and regulation, he is well known by re/insurers, service providers and insureds alike.
He first joined PwC in 1998 as a chartered accountant in London, before moving to the Bermuda office in 2003. By 2009 he was made a partner of the firm, before being named as insurance leader in July 2011. A year later he was named as territory leader , before also taking on leadership of the markets practice for the region in 2016.
A strong advocate for the industry, Wightman served as chairman of ILS Bermuda for more than two years until the end of 2014. At the time he credited the strong growth of the ILS sector in Bermuda to the Island’s “innovative and well-established reinsurance and investment marketplaces, as well as a practical regulator and stock exchange, service providers and most important, the intellectual excellence it is so well regarded for.”
For years he has counselled re/insurers to view convergence capital as an way to unlock new risks rather than a source of competition, advising industry practitioners to focus on new opportunities for risk transfer, rather than pressure exerted on rates. As far back as 2013 Wightman was calling for flood and terrorism risks to be brought into the private market, via convergence or traditional reinsurance, respectively, arguing that both offered considerable scope for premium growth.
Wightman sat on the board of the Association of Bermuda International Companies for five-and-a-half years until November 2018. He is a serving board member of the Family Centre in Bermuda and serves as elder, treasurer and member of Christ Church, Bermuda, part of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland.
Wightman is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bermuda, and studied economics, law, statistics and finance at the University of Exeter in England.
He serves and has served on several boards of non-profits and was the recipient of the Queen’s Certificate and Badge of Honour in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list in 2018.