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Christopher Mandel

Christopher Mandel

Christopher E. Mandel is SVP, strategic solutions for Sedgwick and the director of the Sedgwick Institute, where in both positions he is responsible for helping the company reach its strategic vision of serving current and evolving needs of its current and future customers as well as help lead the industry vertical to the next level and beyond. He is the president and managing consultant of Excellence in Risk Management, and was also EVP, professional services for rPM3 Solution, both independent consulting firms specializing in risk management and insurance services. From 2001-2010, Mandel was head of enterprise risk management for USAA, Group. At USAA, he designed, developed and led the award winning enterprise-wide risk management program. He also served as president and vice chairman, Enterprise Indemnity CIC.

Mandel has more than 30 years of experience in insurance and large global corporate risk management. He has pioneered the development of integrated risk management at USAA, where S&P rated USAA as “excellent” and a “leader in ERM” during their very first evaluation of USAA using their new ERM rating criteria in 2006 and 2007. In 2007, Treasury and Risk Magazine also recognized USAA’s ERM program when it bestowed the Alexander Hamilton Award for “Excellence in ERM” on USAA.

Mandel began his career at Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. in claim management then segued into risk management when he joined Marsh & McLennan as senior claim consultant. He held leadership roles in risk management at Verizon, the American National Red Cross and Tricon Global Restaurants (now Yum Brands).

Mandel has served the Risk and insurance Management Society, (RIMS) as chief risk officer (2003-04) and president, 2002-2003 and in various capacities over the years including; member of the board/executive council from 1998 to 2004. He holds or has held appointments to: the Captive Insurance Group of NJ, the Association for Responsible Alternatives to WC, the Spencer Educational Foundation Board; the advisory board of Insurance Thought Leadership.com; the board of the risk retention group for the American Orthodontics Association; the Center for Enterprise Risk Management Advisory Council (University of GA); and the advisory boards of AIG, the Nonprofit Insurance Alliance Group, Liberty Mutual, Zurich American, FM Global and Willis. He was elected a founding member of Risk Who’s Who in 2008 and teaches for both RIMS and the International Center for Captive Insurance Educations (ICCIE).

Mandel received his B.S. in business management from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and a Masters in business administration from George Mason University. Between these university programs, he was conferred the RIMS Fellow (RF – 2013), the CCSA (2007), CPCU (1987), ARM-E (1990/2015) and AIC (1982) designations and is a graduate of Every Nation Leadership Institute (ENLI). He is a frequent industry speaker, teacher and author, writes the claim management column for IRMI and contributes to the “Risk Insider” for Risk and Insurance magazine. He has had continuously running columns in the trade press since 1996. He was named Risk Manager of the Year – 2004, in 2008 was voted in as a member of Risk Who’s Who (RWW) and in 2016 received RIMS’ highest honor of the Goodell Award for lifetime achievement. He is recognized by his peers as a thought leader in ERM and related disciplines.

Recent Articles by Christopher Mandel

Integrating Cyber Risk in ERM Framework

Enterprise risk management (ERM) is often viewed as a bureaucratic and unnecessary process, subtly or overtly motivated by regulation, accompanied by internal risk leadership kingdom building and suggesting an unclear value proposition. Occasionally, these perceptions are correct, and ERM fails. Yet, there is hope for a successful ERM approach with the right motivations and when […]

Opioids: A Stumbling Block to WC Outcomes

On a weekly if not daily basis, there are media reports about the growing impacts of addiction to opioids. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 78 people a day are dying from the effects of opioid overdose. Families are being systematically destroyed by the multiplicity of effects of this increasingly pervasive […]

Industry Trends for 2017

Every day, our colleagues take care of people facing uncertain situations. Whether they have a workplace injury, need time away for the birth of a child, experience a medical situation that will lead to time off, are in an auto accident or suffer product or property damage, we are here to let them know that […]

How to Use Risk Maturity Models

Over the last 10 years of the “risk leader” portion of my career, as the head of enterprise risk management at USAA (2001-10), as well as during my subsequent work as an ERM consultant, I was challenged by several questions that affect risk management results and, by extension, ultimate success. All fell under the header […]

How to Manage Claims Across Silos

The long-minimized and largely untapped synergy between casualty claims and benefit programs may offer opportunities for both industries. Some argue that these worlds are just too different and distinct to bring together, whether through simple alignment or partial to full integration. Managers are often more comfortable in their own functional areas, and sometimes crossing over […]

10 Building Blocks for Risk Leaders (Part 5)

Important things in life are not easily reduced to 10 steps. Nevertheless, this series provides a list of 10 building blocks to achieving long-term success in risk management from someone who has spent more than 25 years striving to carve out the most satisfying career possible, while never losing sight of the attributes attached to […]

10 Building Blocks for Risk Leaders (Part 4)

Important things in life are not easily reduced to 10 easy steps. Nevertheless, this series provides a list of 10 building blocks to achieving long-term success in risk management from someone who has spent more than 25 years striving to carve out the most satisfying career possible, while never losing sight of the attributes attached […]

10 Building Blocks for Risk Leaders (Part 3)

Important things in life are not easily reduced to 10 easy steps. Nevertheless, this series provides a list of 10 building blocks to achieving long-term success in risk management from someone who has spent more than 25 years striving to carve out the most satisfying career possible, while never losing sight of the attributes attached […]

Options in Work Comp Making Progress

Last year, I highlighted the mission and objectives of the newly minted Association for Responsible Alternatives to Workers’ Compensation (ARAWC) organization that was established by a collaborative group of employers and their provider partners. With Sedgwick as a founding member of this organization, I can report that we moved quickly to stand up the association, […]

Building Blocks for Risk Leaders (Part 2)

Important things in life are not easily reduced to 10 steps. Nevertheless, this series provides a list of 10 building blocks to achieving long-term success in risk management from someone who has spent more than 25 years striving to carve out the most satisfying career possible, while never losing sight of the attributes attached to […]

10 Building Blocks for Risk Leaders (Part 1)

Important things in life are not easily reduced to 10 easy steps. Nevertheless, this series provides a list of 10 building blocks to achieving long-term success in risk management from someone who has spent more than 25 years striving to carve out the most satisfying career possible, while never losing sight of the attributes attached […]

To Bundle or Not to Bundle?

To purchase services on a bundled or unbundled basis is a question that risk managers have debated for many years. In the past, conventional thinking among many risk professionals was to purchase services from distinct service providers. This decision was typically based on which vendors were perceived to offer the highest quality or lowest-priced services. […]

Managing Risk Along the Loss Curve

There are many definitions of risk, with most coming pretty close to each other. Interestingly, most of these definitions put “risk” well beyond the point of “expected losses” (think of the high point on the actuarial loss curve that trails off into infinity as loss becomes less and less likely to occur but more and […]

ERM Alive and Well in Middle East

Having returned from a week in Dubai, where I co-chaired the 4th Annual Middle East and North African ERM Conference and led a two-day workshop on risk and strategy, I am pleased to report that ERM is alive and well half-way around the world. This reinforces my similar experience at the same forum (2nd annual) […]

The Many Paths to a Career in Risk

Over the years, I’ve had no shortage of people ask me how they can get my job as a senior risk leader. They get a glimmer of the possibilities from a distance and develop a strong sense that risk management just might be a pretty interesting career track. Those in manufacturing, healthcare and some other […]

The Evolving Metric: Cost of Risk

Measuring the effectiveness and impact of risk management remains a challenge, and it is difficult to convince many C-suite leaders that the discipline is more than just buying insurance. Central to this question is how effective workers’ compensation reporting is and whether anyone has a truly helpful view into workers’ comp’s cost of risk (COR) […]

More States to Offer Work Comp ‘Opt-Out’?

As we are all too familiar, the handling of workers’ compensation is dictated by statutes in all states. Only Texas and Oklahoma offer the freedom to “opt out” of the statute, and their approaches are quite different. In Texas, “non-subscription” has been around for more than 100 years. Practitioners have achieved dramatic costs savings and […]

11 Things That Matter Most in Managing Risk

Having just returned from another industry gathering where practitioners are trying to get a read on the keys to success in risk management, I thought I’d share some thoughts that I often include in my presentations and RIMS workshops. Suffice it to say, no two practitioners are doing exactly the same thing nor following a […]

ITL Introduces a Channel for ERM

With the traction that InsuranceThoughtLeadership.com (ITL) is now seeing in the marketplace, a consensus developed among the principals that it was time for the addition of a new channel of expertise to further flesh out the rapidly evolving practice of risk management and help influence its course and impact on the success of organizations. This […]

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