Commissioner Lara Appoints New Members to Curriculum Board and California Insurance Guarantee Association Board
News: 2020 Press Release
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara today announced the newest members of the California Department of Insurance’s Curriculum Board and the California Insurance Guarantee Association’s (CIGA) Board of Governors.
“I am very pleased to announce my appointments of the newest members of the Curriculum Board and the CIGA Board of Governors,” said Commissioner Lara. “Through the work done on these boards, we are ensuring agents and brokers licensed by the Department are knowledgeable of important consumer protection laws passed and are prepared to help California consumers with their insurance needs, as well as a strong safety net continues to ensure Californians are protected from loss in the rare event that an insurer becomes insolvent.”
The Curriculum Board oversees the development of prelicensing and continuing education curriculum for agents and brokers to uphold professional standards that protect consumers. This includes a list of preapproved courses of study as well as courses of study for professional designations. This Board also develops standards for providers and instructors who provide courses and other training to licensed agents and brokers.
The CIGA Board of Governors oversees the guarantee association’s general operations and management in order to protect policyholders and honor their claims in the event an insurance company becomes insolvent. Established in 1969 by the Governor and California State Legislature, CIGA comprises all insurance companies licensed to sell homeowners, workers’ compensation, and automobile insurance, among other specified lines of insurance, in California.
The next Curriculum Board meeting will be held on Thursday, July 16, 2020 and the next CIGA Board of Governors meeting will be held on Wednesday, August 5, 2020 . More details are available at www.insurance.ca.gov/boards.
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Appointed members of the Curriculum Board include:
Monique Howard is Assistant Vice President Allied World Insurance Company. Howard has 12 years of experience in underwriting and marketing property and casualty commercial liability and inland marine/ocean marine risks and exposures. She is a board member and Treasurer of the Pacific Coast Regional Advisory Committee of Inland Marine Underwriters Association and is also a member of the San Francisco Chapter of National African American Insurance Association. Howard joins the Curriculum Board as an insurance company representative with a term ending on June 17, 2023.
Neil Granger is owner of Neil Granger Insurance and Annuity Consulting. Granger is an educational training specialist in the area of elder financial abuse, consulting with attorneys, adult protective service workers, elder advocates, financial professionals, and seniors. He is one of only 32 licensed Life & Disability Analysts statewide, serving as an unbiased, expert advisor to consumers and helps to protect vulnerable populations against financial fraud. Granger rejoins the Curriculum Board as a life agent representative with a term ending on May 25, 2023.
Sandra Watts is the Roadmap to Recovery Project Coordinator at United Policyholders (UP). Watts is an insurance claims educator, coordinating workshops and events as part of UP’s Roadmap to Recovery Program to help disaster survivors and legal professionals negotiate the insurance claims process. She is also a licensed public adjuster and presently conducts continuing education classes for public adjusters on various subjects. Watts joins the Curriculum Board as a consumer group representative with a term ending on June 17, 2023.
Steve Hinds owns a property and casualty insurance agency affiliated with Nationwide Insurance Company. Hinds has more than 30 years of experience in the insurance industry, including underwriting, sales, and training. Prior to his current position, he worked in sales and management for Allstate Insurance Company. Hinds joins the Curriculum Board as an agent/broker representative with a term ending on June 17, 2023.
Appointed members of the CIGA Board of Governors include:
Amy Juknelis is Pricing Director and Senior Actuary at Allstate Insurance Company where she leads home and auto insurance actuarial work countrywide. Juknelis has represented Allstate on the New York Property Insurance Underwriting Association Actuarial Committee as well as AIPSO’s Commercial Lines Rating Committee. She is also a credentialed Fellow of the Casualty Actuarial Society. Juknelis rejoins the CIGA Board of Governors as a member insurer representative with a term ending on December 31, 2022.
Peter Guastamachio is the Chief Investment Officer and Treasurer for the State Compensation Insurance Fund, managing a multi-billion-dollar investment portfolio. Guastamachio has 40 years of experience in finance, including over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry in both publicly traded insurance companies as well as a public state fund. Guastamachio is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) and holds the Governance and Leadership Fellow certifications from the NACD. Guastamachio rejoins the CIGA Board of Governors as a member insurer representative with a term ending on December 31, 2022.
Led by Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara, the California Department of Insurance is the consumer protection agency for the nation's largest insurance marketplace and safeguards all of the state’s consumers by fairly regulating the insurance industry. Under the Commissioner’s direction, the Department uses its authority to protect Californians from insurance rates that are excessive, inadequate, or unfairly discriminatory, oversee insurer solvency to pay claims, set standards for agents and broker licensing, perform market conduct reviews of insurance companies, resolve consumer complaints, and investigate and prosecute insurance fraud. Consumers are urged to call 1-800-927-4357 with any questions or contact us at www.insurance.ca.gov via webform or online chat. Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800-927-4357. Teletypewriter (TTY), please dial 800-482-4833.