The new candidate has an ‘impressive track record’ according to WBN chairman
The Worldwide Broker Network (WBN), the world’s largest global network of independent insurance and benefits brokers, has appointed Olga Collins as its new chief executive, effective from 12 April.
Collins succeeds Francie Starnes, who will remain as chief executive emeritus throughout 2021.
Collins joins WBN from member firm Beecher Carlson – for the past seven years, she has led the firm’s multinational practice. Prior to that, she spent 15 years at UPS working as a risk manager.
She has been a member of the WBN board of directors since 2019 and is head of WBN’s Young Professionals Academy.
Furthermore, she has been recognised in a number of industry awards including Elite Women, Power Broker, Hot 100, and Women to Watch.
Speaking on the new appointment, Alex Gilmore, chairman of WBN’s board, said: “I’m delighted that we have attracted a leader of Olga’s calibre as our next [chief executive].
“The WBN board followed a rigorous selection process, including engaging external executive search, and as a result we have not only selected an outstanding candidate but one that has such an excellent understanding of our network.
“Olga’s impressive track record of building international insurance relationships and her time as a risk manager gives her a deep understanding of client needs.
“This is an exciting moment for WBN, as we expand and further strengthen our network as the insurance and benefits broker network of choice for multinationals, and Olga is the ideal candidate to lead us forward.”
Collins added: “This is an exciting time to be taking the reins at WBN.
“As we emerge from the pandemic, WBN will be helping members to grow their business and seize opportunities that economic changes will bring.
“WBN’s goal is to support members as they help their clients manage risk, protect their businesses and support benefits for their workforces—a winning combination to allow them to grow faster and stronger. I’m looking forward to getting started and building upon such a solid foundation.”
On Starnes’ departure, Gilmore said: “We are grateful to Francie for her commitment and creative leadership, which together with her disciplined approach to financial strength, has been instrumental in the growth and composition of WBN.
“Francie’s governance during the pandemic, particularly in transforming our global conferences to virtual events, has been outstanding. We are fortunate to have a comprehensive [chief executive] succession process with Francie’s future contributions as [chief executive] emeritus.”
WBN, which was founded in 1989, has more than 100 member firms across 90 countries. At the end of 2020, its revenues amounted to over $6bn.