Barbara C. Bufkin
Barbara's four decades in the insurance and reinsurance industry have spanned leadership roles encompassing operational and strategic responsibilities, including business origination and product development, underwriting, claims, risk management/corporate governance and ceded and assumed reinsurance, while fostering a culture of innovation, mentorship, and diverse talent.
Throughout the past seven years, Barbara has focused her career at the intersection of distribution, underwriting, technology and capital in specialty businesses. Barbara currently serves as a Senior Advisor at AmWINS Group and is a founding member of the D&I Council, an independent Director of Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited (NEIL) and subsidiary Cedar Hamilton, and an independent director of The Westfield Companies.
During her three-year tenure (2017-2020) as Chair of the International Board of Governors of the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) and current President of the Association of Professional Insurance Women (APIW), Barbara has been directly engaged in the global and national Women in Insurance Conference series. Furthering her commitment to the IICF, she serves as Co-Chair of the IICF Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility (IDEA) Council, which brings together over 50 of the top D&I officers in the insurance industry to advance the mission of diversity and inclusion. Concurrently, she is a member of the North American board of directors of ISC Group and advocates for the value of the insurance industry as a career of choice in her role as immediate past president and chair of the governance committee and member of the Board of Trustees of Gamma Iota Sigma (GIS). As a keynote speaker on The Power of Purpose in various insurance industry forums, Barbara has been driving the Big Tent of culture, inclusion, innovation, sponsorship, mentoring talent and the power of networks.
A tireless advocate on issues of philanthropy, product innovation and talent, Barbara was named Insurance Woman of the Year by APIW in 2012, Inclusion Champion by the IICF in 2015 and Woman of Distinction at the 2017 Insurance Business America Awards. In 2019, she was inducted into Insurance Business America’s Hall of Fame.
Barbara’s experience also includes roles at Assurant, Hamilton USA, Guy Carpenter & Company, Argo Group, and Swiss Re Services Corporation. At Assurant, Barbara served as P&C growth and innovation leader as Executive Head of Business Development in the Lending Solutions Group. Her responsibilities included growth strategies, originating and fostering strategic partnerships, and creating innovative product solutions.
Prior to Assurant, Barbara was one of the founding members of the US leadership team of Hamilton USA, joining the company at its launch in September 2014, in a first of its kind InsureTech startup, reporting to the CEO. Before that, Barbara served as Guy Carpenter & Company’s Chief Operating Officer of Global Strategic Advisory. In this role, she interacted with CEOs and executive teams of key Guy Carpenter clients to assess and recommend growth strategies and strategic plans, evaluated the emerging InsureTech arena and originated unique reinsurance structures.
Before joining Guy Carpenter, Barbara worked for Argo Group for 12 years, reporting to the CEO and, as a member of the Group Executive Committee, serving as Executive Vice President with Argo International Holdings, Ltd. Prior to Argo Group, Barbara opened Swiss Re Services Corporation’s Dallas office, joining their Zurich-based International Business team. She was responsible for working with major brokers and directly with U.S.-based Fortune 500 clients (CFO/Risk Managers) to bring value proposition of Swiss Re’s primary international business. Swiss Re Services became Swiss Re New Markets, where she served as Director, Head of Insurance Privatization and as Chairman, President and CEO of Swiss Re subsidiaries, Facility Insurance Corporation (FIC) and Facility Insurance Holding Corporation (FIHC). Prior to Swiss Re, she started Turnbridge Reinsurance Intermediaries to act in a consulting capacity to Swiss Re Atrium.
Before that, Barbara had fifteen years of industry experience in executive positions, most notably with Sedgwick Payne Company and E.W. Blanch Company. Following undergraduate studies, she joined Travelers Insurance Company in commercial underwriting, spending the first five years of her career in primary underwriting and casualty facultative reinsurance underwriting with American Reinsurance Company (Munich Re).
Barbara attended Wheaton College, Norton, MA and graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo, cum laude with a B.A. degree in Philosophy. She is also Alumna of various executive courses at Harvard Business School, Stanford Executive Education and Wharton Executive Education.