A Sam Friedman Must Read ….

While I was making the online rounds Saturday I noted National Underwriter Editor in Chef Sam Friedman has yet another blog entry on “the need for an iconic insurance superhero to serve as a positive role model and help improve the industry’s poor public image. That line of blogging generated Mr Friedman “a fascinating letter from Donna J. Popow, senior director of knowledge resources and ethics counsel at the American Institute for CPCU and the Insurance Institute of America.”

“Shortly after Hurricane Katrina, I was asked to do a spot on a local Philadelphia news station. I talked about what homeowners could do to get ready for a catastrophic event.

“After that spot I went to the producers and suggested to them that the real story coming from Hurricane Katrina was the work of the adjusters on the ground handling claims. They agreed with me, and asked if I could find them adjusters to speak with.

“I contacted several adjusters who I knew were handling claims in Louisiana and Mississippi. Each adjuster I contacted thought the idea was a good one–and each of their employers refused to give them permission to participate.

“As a lawyer, I can understand why; as a claims person, I was bitterly disappointed.

“As an industry we have done very little to publicize the good that we do. Usually the only publicity we get is in a law journal, where even a win for the industry is cast is a negative light because it usually means a policyholder or a claimant isn’t getting paid.

“Why shouldn’t our industry pat itself on the back for mustering hundreds of adjusters on short notice to respond to a catastrophe? Why shouldn’t the rest of the TV-watching, newspaper-reading public learn that these men and women—many of whom are volunteers—leave their families for weeks (or even months) on end to work these catastrophes, meeting with policyholders in extremely stressful situations, and diligently settling claims?….. Continue reading “A Sam Friedman Must Read ….”

Sam Friedman Checks in with Another Fantastic Post on Weather Modeling and Insurance

Sam Friedman’s blog is a frequent stop of mine when I surf the internet for insurance issues.  He is the editor of the National Underwriter, a trade publication serving the property and casualty segment of the insurance industry.  I like Mr Friedman, he is a journalist first and foremost, one who examines the issues with great attention to balance in his reporting. He has opinions on insurance issues though, for instance he is against Gene Taylor’s multi peril bill HR 3121. However our offline conversations on that issue tell me his opinions do not stand in the way of doing the topic justice as he is open to reporting all sides of the issue in his blog and trade publication.

It was his post on weather modeling and it’s use in the industry for setting rates and determining the amount of risk to take on that got me interesting in the topic.  In fact my first blog post dealt with that subject and featured one of Sam’s earlier posts on the topic. Featured was Karen Clark, who literally helped write the book on weather modeling:

One big problem is that catastrophe models are not reliable predictors of when or where a monster hurricane is going to strike, according to Karen Clark, vice chair of AIR Worldwide, one of the leading modeling firms. Continue reading “Sam Friedman Checks in with Another Fantastic Post on Weather Modeling and Insurance”