Sponsored by Gold Seal, AIMS and Steadfast

Supported by Lloyds

The finalists for the 5th prestigious Valerie Baker Memorial Award have just been announced. The Valerie Baker Memorial Award recognises excellence in professional practice in the General Insurance intermediary sector, including both broking and underwriting agencies. It is awarded nationally and is sponsored jointly by Gold Seal, AIMS and the Steadfast Group with notable support from Lloyd’s Australia and Lloyd’s of London.

The 2018 finalists are:

  • Amanda Morris – Arma Insurance Group
  • Fintan Magee – Network Insurance Group
  • James Dunk – Dunk Insurance
  • Kim Matthews – Rothbury Insurance Brokers Group
  • Rocco Pirrello – GSA Insurance Brokers

The winner will receive a career enhancing opportunity to see first-hand how the London Market operates. The prize includes:

  • Expenses-paid trip to London – business class air fares and accommodation
  • An education experience tailored to the winner’s special interests
  • Career enhancing meetings and networking with key underwriters and brokers
  • Thorough familiarisation of Lloyd’s of London and meeting with senior managers
  • $1000 AUD spending money

“The shortlisted applicants this year presented a great challenge to the judging panel. All are dedicated insurance professionals and all are outstanding in their field. They are a collection of remarkable talent.” said Sheila Baker, Managing Director Gold Seal.

“I’d like to acknowledge the efforts of all the nominees in submitting the application. They always say that it was a very hard job to talk about their own achievements. I know the winner will be a testament to the Australia insurance intermediary sector” Baker continued.

Here is a snapshot of the finalists’ achievements:

Amanda Morris
Amanda is a director of ARMA Insurance Group, and an AR of Community Broker Network. Her passion for insurance is evident and her commitment to leadership is unquestionable. She also has a stated aim to “assist, inspire and educate women in the industry to be market leading”. A remarkable example of hard work and true grit.

Fintan Magee
Fintan has 25+ years in the insurance industry. He has an extensive background in the insurance industry and co-founded the Gallivan Magee brokerage. Eventually, selling the business to Steadfast, he then joined Network Brokers in Melbourne. Currently, he occupies the General Manager role there and continues to impress clients and Insurers alike with his knowledge of his clients’ businesses and technical understanding of Broking in all its aspects.

James Dunk
James has worked at Dunk Insurance since 2002 and now fulfils a senior management position as Business Development Manager. He is held in very high regard in his community in regional NSW, not just by his clients, but by his community in general. He has had occasion to demonstrate his commitment to regional Australian life every time a natural disaster hits the area – unfortunately all too frequently. He was the winner of NIBA’s Broker of the Year in 2017.

Kim Matthews
Kim is a successful Insurance Broker with 30+ years in the insurance industry. In 2007, Kim founded Rothbury’s Hawkes Bay (NZ) branch which she has led to become their most successful and highly awarded branch. She is a respected mentor to her team and colleagues and a longstanding contributor to both her employer and her community.

Rocco Pirrello
Rocco is the Marketing and Communications Executive at GSA Insurance Brokers and the Platform Lead at insuresME and Cost Cover. Whilst he has had substantial experience in an underwriting role at Brooklyn, he quickly branched his career into the business aspects of the industry and it is there his main interest lies.

Finalists were interviewed by the judging panel:
• Chris Mackinnon, General Representative Lloyd’s Australia
• Jim Rudkin, representing the Steadfast Group
• Martin McAvenna, representing the AIMS Group
• Sheila Baker, Managing Director of Gold Seal

Following the interviews they will select a winner based on both their interviews, references and application.

The prize is taken up in London to acknowledge and underline the importance of London Market knowledge to Australian intermediaries and due to Valerie Baker’s affiliation and achievements there.

The award will be announced at a function to be held at Lloyd’s Australia’s premises on 11 September 2018.