RIMS announces 2017 Risk Manager of the Year and Risk Management Honour Roll

Loren nickel

Risk management society RIMS has crowned Google director of business risk and insurance Loren Nickel (pictured) as the 2017 RIMS Risk Manager of the Year. The award will be presented to Nickel at the association’s annual conference on 25 April in Philadelphia, United States.

RIMS also named three risk professionals in its 2017 Risk Management Honor Roll, including University of Pennsylvania executive director, office of risk management and insurance, Benjamin Evans; CSX Transportation director of insurance Juliana J. Keaton; and Whirlpool Corporation director of risk management Scot Schwarting.

RIMS chief executive Mary Roth said Nickel’s success at Google “exemplifies the invaluable role risk professionals can play in allowing their organisations to achieve strategic objectives”.

“Organizations have come to rely on risk professionals’ knowledge and ingenuity to navigate the rapidly evolving and increasingly more complex risk landscape,” she said. “It is an honour and privilege for RIMS to recognise the achievements of these outstanding professionals.”

Nickel joined Google in 2015 and is responsible for business risks that impact all Alphabet Inc. (formerly known as ‘Google’) companies worldwide – which together has $90bn in annual revenue, 72,000 employees and a current market cap of $579bn.

In his first year, RIMS said Nickel focused on building the foundation for future risk management efforts.

“Such efforts included the implementation of a total cost of risk tracking system, an internal version of the best capital adequacy ratio used to rate its captive, a risk-based monitoring system for emerging risks, a loss measurement system called the ‘actual versus expected’ report, as well as creating a customised multi-line risk policy,” the association said in a statement.

Nickel also co-developed (along with Ward Ching from Aon) the theory behind an important strategic risk management effort known as the Efficient Frontier.

“Used for insurance structure decision-making, the Efficient Frontier helped the organisation simplify such decisions and demonstrated the opportunity to significantly reduce risk as measured by total value at risk, all without an increase in spending,” RIMS said.

Because Google continues its rapid growth, insurance structures are often less applicable by the end of the contract. To counter this, Nickel and the risk management team created five and 10-year risk management plans to compensate for this evolution.

RIMS said: “These plans allow them to focus on future placements during the current renewal process, ensuring that Google has better protections in place in future periods.”