NIBA member Karen Hardy of ACME Insurance Brokers in Far North QLD has won the Valerie Baker Memorial Award at a special event hosted by Lloyd’s.
The Valerie Baker Memorial Award recognises excellence in professional practice in the General Insurance Intermediary sector. Hardy is the first winner from regional Queensland and the judges were impressed by her track record during her 21 years at the helm of Tully based brokerage.
Martin McAvenna, from the judging panel, summed up Karen’s candidacy as follows: “Karen represents what is best about our business. The mission of insurance in the broader community could not have been better articulated. Overlaid with her experience, good humour, political activism, and excellent product knowledge, she showed a clear view of what she wishes to achieve if she wins the award…She is thinking about the future in not only her community but Australia in general as a risk exposure”.
As a part of her prize Hardy will be flown to London and receive a career enhancing opportunity to see first-hand how the London Market operates. Sheila Baker, Managing Director Gold Seal said, “The nominees for this Award keep getting better and better. They all come with great career track records and have plenty of scope to grow, develop and add to our fantastic industry even further. Bring on 2018’s applicants, we can’t wait.”
Award nominations were shortlisted and the finalists interviewed by the judging panel. The panel consisted of Chris Mackinnon, General Representative Lloyd’s Australia, Jim Rudkin, Chairman of Steadfast Insurance Brokers Pty Ltd and Steadfast Underwriting Agencies Pty Ltd, representing the Steadfast Group, Martin McAvenna, representing the AIMS Group and Sheila Baker, Managing Director of Gold Seal.
The nominees were judged on criteria that centred around – ethics and values, business success, client relationships, teamwork, innovation, entrepreneurship, and industry contribution.