60 is a great number. After all, it represents the number of starting players on 4 rugby teams! And the ancient Babylonians used base 60 for their sexagesimal system of mathematics. Closer to home, it was also the number of folks present at the launch party for the Vermont Captive Insurance Emerging Leaders Group (VCIEL). This exceeded the preliminary target, but more than the numbers was the quality present.
We attracted professors, students, rising professionals and a slate of key industry decision makers, including Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation Kevin Gaffney, Sandy Bigglestone (#3 on the Power 50 Captive Review), Deputy Commissioner of the Captive Division of the DFR, and even Mike Pieciak, Treasurer for the State of Vermont and a dear friend of the VCIA. The launch party had it all: it was fun, dynamic, great enthusiasm, and the conversations around the group and its goals were outstanding.
In addition to being a meeting place for the Emerging Leaders, the group has set themselves some additional goals, and the greatest of these is to have a positive influence on the number and quality of talented individuals available to Vermont’s captive industry. With continued pressure in the competition for talent, and with Vermont lacking any formal college program addressing risk management, this will be a challenge, but I am strongly betting on this great pool of talented individuals to be able to make considerable headway here.
How can it be done? Developing smart relationships. Though there may not be a risk management program at Vermont schools, there’s a strong contingent of people – students, professors, administrators – who are interested in developing relationships and opportunities with VCIA and VCIEL. This was on full display at the VCIEL Launch Party, and there are already irons in the fire in how we will take effective action. More to come on that. Education and outreach will be key.
It’s critical to note that while the VCIA strongly supports and has a partnership with VCIEL, VCIEL operates with autonomy and makes decisions by group consensus made up of the talented folks with various captive roles who provide great perspective. This is by design and is based on the strong belief within the VCIA that groups like this need to be empowered and resourced and not directed and controlled.
As we near #VCIA2023 registration kick off (May 15th, mark your calendars!), you will see heightened visibility for VCIEL, which will play an integral role at the conference in August. They are already driving highly relevant content onto the agenda for that event, and will be a perfect resource for the students, rising professionals and those new to the industry who attend to the conference.
I expect to be able to report on further development and partnerships for the group in the coming months, but for now, let’s give a hand for the great work done by VCIEL. The launch party was a smash hit! It’s just the beginning and VCIA is proud to be with VCIEL on this journey to a better captive future.