Chief Field Executive
Kathleen Zortman, chief field executive for Novato, Calif.-based Fireman's Fund, is responsible for leading the company's field underwriting, customer service and sales teams.
Hired last year, Zortman is going to play a key role in rebuilding bridges with the underwriter's distribution force, which was left confused and frustrated as several CEOs turned over in the recent past.
Zortman's sales and service teams represent approximately 40 percent of Fireman's Fund's overall employee population, so her responsibilities at the Allianz-owned property/casualty insurer are critical.
She has espoused a back-to-basics strategy. "We need to know who we are, and focus on underwriting discipline, responsible pricing, and being effective and efficient as an organization," she said.
"I just don't mean back office, but how we organize ourselves around the customer."
How she executes that strategy is why the marketplace should pay attention to Zortman next year, as she delivers on CEO Lori Dickerson Fouché's goal to return the company to its strengths: insuring high net worth clients with specialized underwriting sold through the company's deep agent and broker network.