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John Riggs is the new Workers' Compensation Claims Manager for Disney Worldwide Services in Anaheim.  He started there on May 12th.

 

John was recently the claims manager of the 99 Cent Only Stores in Commerce, but only for about 18 months.  Prior to his 99 Cent stint he worked for more than 8 years as the Assistant Claims Manager of California Casualty in Orange County before they closed their doors just a few years ago.   Prior to California Casualty he was with The Zenith.

 


 

The claims community recently mourned the loss of another industry veteran.

 

Deborah Cohen passed away Saturday, May 3 after developing sepsis following a routine surgical procedure.

 

Most recently Deborah worked as a Senior Adjuster for State Fund in Oxnard. She also spent a number of years with Superior National and was then hired by Kemper when Superior was liquidated.

 

Co-workers from all three claims departments came to pay their respect May 5 at the Ted Mayr Funeral Home in Ventura.

 

Those close to her said that she’ll be sorely missed and that she was a great person to work with.

 


Ronnie Kessler, a veteran Workers’ Compensation claims manager who most recently was employed by Warner Brothers in Burbank, died on Friday, April 25th at 6pm of cancer.   She was known for many years as a Pasadena area resident who was living in Arcadia at the time of her death.

 

Ronnie was described by her colleagues as a “class act” who was “Pasadena polished”.  It is said that she would always appear on the job and at festivities dressed to the nines in her beautifully tailored suits or evening wear, while looking and acting the part of the professional woman of excellence. 

 

She started her career in Workers’ Compensation claims at Bierly & Associates in Pasadena back in the 1970s, where she was dubbed a “Bierly Bunny” after the Bierly organization’s inclination for hiring excessively attractive women.

 

For more on Ms. Kessler’s background, go to our recent feature article at The Entertaining Adjuster.

 


Harold Anderson left Cambridge Integrated Management Services in Pasadena recently, where he was a Senior Vice President, to start his own company, Adjuster Academy—an insurance claims adjuster training school. Joining him as Director of Instruction of Workers’ Compensation Claims is Cecilia Hernandez, a veteran Work Comp claims professional and former claims manager of The Los Angeles Times. Directing Liability Claims Training is Ernie Gore, who shares his time at Adjuster Academy with his consulting company, Gore & Associates.   

 

Adjuster Academy is located in Culver City, California.   Naturally, their website address is www.adjusteracademy.com.

 


 

 

Barry Lapidus has been selected as Fremont Employers Insurance’s Northern California Division Manager.

 

Parent company, Employers Insurance Company of Nevada announced the appointment April 1.

 

Lapidus has held his share of weighty positions at some of the nation’s big name carriers including CIGNA Property and Casualty and American Insurance Group.

 

Regarding the appointment, EICN Chief Operating Officer Mary-Lou Misrahy said, “As

Division Manager, Barry will play a key role in FEIC's ongoing commitment to continued profitable growth within the Northern California market.”

 


With over 25 years of claims experience to back her up, Nancy Obertello has been appointed vice president and member of the Executive Committee of State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF).

Obertello has been immersed in the claims operations in Northern California since starting as a claims adjuster in 1976, in SCIF’s Santa Rosa Office.

She’s held a variety of positions including: Assistant Claims Manager, Claims Rehabilitation Operation manager, Business Service manager and Underwriting manager.


It's been reported that Wausau Insurance has scaled back its workers' compensation operation by a couple of notches in Pasadena, but that doesn't mean there's a shortage of claims for a few top notch claims professionals to handle.

With Lois Edwards as the Team Leader and a couple of other examiners dominating the files, the claims department has been reported to be in good hands and bringing on new talent.

If anyone has wondered where Wausau Claims Manager Jerry Abracosa has gone to, adjuster.com found out that he's been set up as a Senior Case Manager in Glendale with Helmsman Management Services, a Liberty Mutual TPA.

Let the pizza parties begin!

 


 

 

Clarence Jackson recently met with adjuster.com's Clabe Via to discuss his new role at Farmers Insurance since leaving Zurich. In the interview Clarence, a 10 yr. Sr. Claims Examiner, explained how he ended up in the claims business 15 years ago.

 

"If you interviewed 99 examiners you'd get 99 answers probably pretty close to this one…We didn't come into this business to be claims examiners. We fell into it by accident," said Clarence.

He's happy with his move to Farmers and is impressed with the teamwork environment. More than once he's had a supervisor step in and handle a call from the Board when he was away from his desk.

Outside the office Clarence stays active. Along with playing basketball and softball, he

also coaches a youth flag football and basketball team. In fact the basketball team has won their last two league titles.

Clarence Jackson from Farmers Insurance | Runtime: 5:55

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David Stowe & Jessica Proserpi Promoted | Runtime: 1:07

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David Stowe who has been deep in the workers’ compensation business since ’77 recently benefited from being at the right place at the right time. Risk Management Services in Agoura recently became Risk Management Services Group. In the transition he was promoted from claims manager to the vice president of claims. Management must be aware of what Stowe brings to the table—seasoned from years of experience with State Fund, Cal Indemnity and Travelers. Stowe, you are the man!

 

Also, Trudy Weber, a Unit Manager from Claims Management, Inc. has reported how impressed everyone is at the Sacramento TPA with Jessica Proserpi. Though fairly new to workers’ compensation, Proserpi has already been promoted to an Examiner. She is currently in the training process and doing a great job. Keep up the momentum!

 

 

 

 


 

Jorge Alexandria's Promotion | Runtime: 0:51

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If there’s one thing Jorge Alexandria has learned over his 12-year career handling workers’ compensation claims is how to make things happen. His most recent accomplishment was a promotion to Critical Case Manager for Travelers in Diamond Bar. In this Senior Technical Supervisor position he manages and mitigates exposure on Travelers’ most serious, high dollar claims. He’s been with the company four years now. Alexandria has also had prior stints with FIRM Solutions, Cal Comp and Industrial Indemnity. Way to go on the Promo!

 

 


 

Argonaut Insurance (People) | Runtime: 1:06

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Argonaut Insurance Company adjusters are dancing to the familiar accordion claims piece of expansion and contraction. The San Jose claims office was shut down April 30 in an effort to consolidate claims operations. Andrea Loyd the director of claims has moved to the San Francisco office. She is one of the only claims professionals from the San Jose office to join fellow ranks in San Francisco. What’s nice for her is that she’s now a couple of blocks away from the Embarcadero and just a cable car trip from Chinatown.

 

As for Claims Manager Debbie Fagundes, Examiner Linda Preece and Assistant Examiner Susan Rodriguez, they have all moved on. Assistant Examiner Lynn Baker is still onsight working the phones, but she is slated to hang up her headset on in three weeks.

 

 


 

CNA claims professionals in Southern California are getting a little closer, and it has nothing to do with a chewing gum commercial. The Glendale claims office is going to be folded into the Brea claims office. Claims professionals had the opportunity to transfer to the Brea location if they chose. Those who plan to set up shop in Brea will be making the move May 6. They will be working under the direction of Vanessa Langlais, the vice president of claims in Brea.

 

The Glendale office is slated to close July 19, so those who don’t plan to migrate to Brea have a couple of months to line up their next gig.

 

It is about a 50-mile drive from the Glendale office to the Brea office, so naturally the distance has helped many decide whether to stay locally or move. Claims Representatives Manny Fernando and Andy Walter plan to report to Glendale until the doors are shut.

 


 

The former owner of Golden Eagle Insurance Co., John C. Mabee passed away April 24. The 80-year-old horse breeder/businessman from Iowa seemed to always know just where to put his money.

 

Mabee invested $2.8 million in 1984 to secure the Golden Eagle insurance license. Under his direction the company’s premiums reached $700 million. Although California Insurance Commissioner Chuck Quackenbush seized control of the company in 1997, Mabee still received $20 million after the company was sold to Liberty Mutual.

 

His success began when he parlayed a $2,000 investment in a small grocery store, into a chain of 30 Big Bear grocery stores, which he sold in 1991. Then in 1957 he bought a couple of cheap horses at the summer yearling sale at Del Mar. These were the first two horses of hundreds to come that Mabee and his wife Betty bred and trained on their 568-acre Golden Eagle ranch in Ramona, CA. The Mabees were recognized throughout the horseracing world for their horse breeding success.

 

Mabee died from complications following a stroke he had one week before.

 


 

 

Sandra Raab, a rehabilitation claims assistant at ROYAL & SUNALLIANCE in Glendale, has succumbed to Cupid’s arrow. Raab is looking forward to a May 4th wedding at her home. An incredibly organized person, Raab is already done planning her nuptials and her honeymoon trip to Florida and Canada. Raab started temping at ROYAL & SUNALLIANCE in January 2001 but she’s been in the claims business for more than a decade. She is dedicated to her claims job but admits her passion is swimming. For 30 years, Raab has been a water safety instructor and lifeguard. Her “other” full-time job is teaching swimming to students of all ages and she volunteers her services to teach people with Multiple Sclerosis. Raab is so devoted to swimming she even has her own website www.swim4kids.com.

 

 

 

        
             

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