How Jodie Kaufman Davis is driving growth and equity

How Jodie Kaufman Davis is driving growth and equity

How Jodie Kaufman Davis is driving growth and equity | Insurance Business Canada

Insurance News

How Jodie Kaufman Davis is driving growth and equity

And why “family values” are of huge importance to her

Insurance News

Greg Hudson

Jodie Kaufman Davis, H.W. Kaufman Group EVP and Burns & Wilcox Canada president, may not have initially sought to follow in her family’s footsteps and build her career in insurance, but a change of mind and a pivot out of the legal arena ended up paying personal and professional dividends.

“I started my career as a lawyer,” she recalled. “After about eight years of practicing law, I was on the partnership track and deciding whether or not that was the right career for me.”

During this pivotal moment, Kaufman Davis, a mother of three, began to explore alternative career paths. The insurance business had always been in the background, given her family’s involvement, but it wasn’t until 2012, when the company expanded to Canada, that she decided to give it a shot.

Leaping into insurance

In January 2014, she took the leap into the insurance industry, and she hasn’t looked back since. Her transition from law to insurance was fuelled by a desire for personal and professional growth.

“I’ve really enjoyed building businesses and developing teams of people,” she explained.

There have been plenty of accomplishments along the way too. One that stands out is her role in elevating Burns & Wilcox Canada from a small entity to a well-known brand across the country. Under her leadership, the business has continued to thrive and set record-setting numbers.

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Going beyond borders

But her ambitions didn’t stop at the Canadian border. She expanded her role, joining the Kaufman board of directors, where she gained a broader perspective on the possibilities in the insurance industry. This expansion led to the creation of RB Jones, a specialized insurance entity focusing on property, marine, energy, and professional liability across the United States.

“I realized that, while we were doing great in the Canadian market, this is something that we should expand on beyond the Canadian marketplace,” she said.

Beyond RB Jones, Jodie plays a pivotal role as the chief strategy officer for Atain Insurance Companies, a Kaufman company. There, she’s focused on strengthening the team and expanding capabilities, which includes developing exclusive products and specialization to meet market needs and implementing a digital rate quote bind system for enhanced technology.

Kaufman Davis emphasizes that the Kaufman Group is a family-owned and operated organization, and associates aren’t just employees but members of the family. The business does its best to ensure that every associate has the support they need, whether it’s personal assistance through the Employee Relief Fund or professional development opportunities.

Recruiting top talent and fostering employee engagement are also top priorities. She wants Kaufman to remain a destination for the best and brightest in the industry. “Exploring ways to keep our associates challenged and advancing their career trajectories” is a key part of her mission.

Leading the way on diversity and inclusion

One of Kaufman Davis’s proudest achievements is her role as the executive sponsor for diversity and inclusion (D&I) initiatives at Kaufman. She has seen first-hand the positive impact D&I has had on the organization, bringing together associates of all backgrounds to solve complex challenges and engage in community events.

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But her commitment to promoting diversity doesn’t end at Kaufman’s doors. She serves as the Canada Chair for the Insurance Supper Club, an organization that supports women in the industry. Through this role, she provides opportunities for women to network with female executives and develop the skills needed to advance their careers.

Looking ahead to the future, her aspirations are clear. She wants to focus on talent development, recruitment, and technology investment to ensure the continued success of the Kaufman Group. She’s keen on expanding the company’s global operations and leveraging the Kaufman platform to provide the best solutions for clients.

In the words of Kaufman Davis herself: “Our family values really are a pillar when we welcome associates to our organization. We really welcome them to our family.”

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