Willis North America Appoints Personal Lines Leadership Team

NEW YORK, May 29, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Willis North America, a unit of Willis Group Holdings (NYSE:WSH), a leading global risk advisor, insurance and reinsurance broker, today announced a series of appointments to its Personal Lines Practice as part of its succession plan.

Willis' Personal Lines Practice is an industry leader in personal insurance, providing world-class personal risk solutions and placement services to individuals and families with complex risks. The Practice includes approximately 250 private client and personal insurance professionals located across the United States and Canada.

The following appointments are in line with the retirement of Sandra Bravo, National Practice Leader and CEO, Willis Personal Lines. During her eight-year tenure, Ms. Bravo contributed to the Practice's impressive growth and expansion in both the high net worth and personal lines sectors.

  • Tyler Banks has been appointed National Practice Leader and CEO, Willis Personal Lines. He will focus on driving growth across the platform and aligning Willis resources to deliver industry leading solutions to the firms' personal insurance clients. Mr. Banks joined Willis in 2012 as Western Region Leader and prior to that he served as sales leader for Marsh Private Client Services in California. He is based in Irvine, CA.
  • Kim Connell has been appointed Chief Operating Officer, Willis Personal Lines. In this newly created role, she will be responsible for the day-to-day operations and workflow processes of the Personal Lines Practice. Ms. Connell joined Willis in 2012, as Vice President, Willis Personal Lines and has over 30 years of experience. Prior to joining Willis, she served as Senior Director of Personal Insurance Marketing, Fireman's Fund Insurance Company. She is based in Dallas, TX.

Rounding out the Willis Personal Lines leadership team are Max Gilman, West Region Leader, based in San Francisco, CA, and Mike Smerkanich, East Region Leader, based in Morristown, NJ. Each brings over 25 years of experience to the role. They will report to Mr. Banks.

Commenting on these appointments, Tom Coughlin, National Partner, Willis North America said, "These appointments comprise a very strong leadership team and are consistent with our commitment to delivering exceptional client service. We are excited to build on the success of our Personal Lines business and sincerely thank Sandra Bravo for all of her contributions to Willis. Sandra has been a powerful force in this industry and has built a first class personal lines business at Willis."

About Willis

Willis Group Holdings plc is a leading global risk advisor, insurance and reinsurance broker. With roots dating to 1828, Willis operates today on every continent with more than 17,000 employees in over 400 offices. Willis offers its clients superior expertise, teamwork, innovation and market-leading products and professional services in risk management and transfer. Our experts rank among the world's leading authorities on analytics, modelling and mitigation strategies at the intersection of global commerce and extreme events. Find more information at our website,www.willis.com, our leadership journal, Resilience, or our up-to-the-minute blog on breaking news, WillisWire. Across geographies, industries and specialisms, Willis provides its local and multinational clients with resilience for a risky world.

CONTACT: Media: Colleen McCarthy + 212 915 8307 Email: colleen.mccarthy@willis.com Investors: Peter Poillon +1 212 915 8084 Email: Peter.Poillon@willis.comSource:Willis Group Holdings