2017 Distribution Conference for Financial Services Agenda

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

4:00 pm - 5:00 pm: VALUE-ADDED WORKSHOPS

VA1. Your Competition Is Not Who You Think It Is
SARAH SCHMIDT, Director, Product Management, Assessment and Development Solutions, LIMRA

Today’s consumer is different. They expect an individualized approach and want to be understood at a level never seen before. Globally, winning companies and discriminating market leaders are achieving success by capitalizing on consumer insights to get closer to their customers. In order to out-sell the competition, your reps have to understand consumer needs, wants, and preferences. Would you say they are product-centric or market-centric? Make sure your reps are creating positive customer experiences.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon V

VA2. Beyond Digital: Competing in a Connected World
BETSY HUBBARD, Founder, COO & President, Mindset Digital; SAMI SCARPITTI, Senior Account Director, Mindset Digital.

Mobile, custom, fast and easy. That’s what it takes to meet the demands of today’s digital consumer. But it isn’t nearly enough. This fast-moving session will examine what savvy companies — and sales teams — are doing now to earn clients’ attention, and more importantly, loyalty. This takes more than clever marketing or even a presence on all of the latest channels. We’ll cover three key mandates for winning over increasingly hard-to-impress clients.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon IV

5:00 pm - 5:45 pm - WOMEN LEADERS' RECEPTION

Explore and exchange questions, ideas and solutions with other women executives in the industry. 

For LIMRA members only.

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm - HOSPITALITY RECEPTION


Sponsored BY IMN

Members and carriers only

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm - LIMRA WELCOME RECEPTION

Thursday, March 2, 2017

7:15 am - 8:00 am - CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST

8:00 am - 8:20 am - Opportunities Ahead

JAMES W. KERLEY, LLIF, Chief Membership Officer, LIMRA, LOMA and LL Global

Grand Ballroom B/C, 3rd Floor

8:20 am - 9:00 am - GENERAL SESSION

Industry's Challenges & Opportunities Ahead

The financial services industry is facing change across all aspects of our business. As distribution leaders, we have to rise above the challenges and uncover the new and innovative approaches to distribution. Drawing on years of industry experience, Brian will share his perspective on today’s environment, and his vision to navigate through these rough waters and embrace the opportunities ahead.

Brian Winikoff - Senior Executive Director, Head of AXA's US Life, Retirement and Wealth Management Businesses, AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company

Grand Ballroom B/C, 3rd Floor

9:00 am - 10:00 am - GENERAL SESSION

Fiscal Debates: Economic Analysis of an Uncertain Future

Todd Buchholz is a leading voice in the financial services industry and has advised the U.S. Treasury Department, Federal Reserve Board, and most of the leading investment banks in the world. With our changing administration, Todd has been in contact with many of Trump’s closest advisers on financial policy. The Trump presidency could lead to radical revisions in Dodd-Frank, the Volcker Rule, the DOL Fiduciary Rule, and many other planks of President Obama’s economic platform. Trump’s Federal Reserve Board appointments may be unconventional as well, and we could see a re-shaping of policy from taxation to health care to foreign affairs. Todd analyzes these debates in real-time, and will provide targeted recommendations specifically for the financial service industry, while helping you figure out whether the Washington sweepstakes makes life easier or tougher for your company’s bottom line.

Todd Buchholz - Former White House Director of Economic Policy and CNBC Regular

Grand Ballroom B/C, 3rd Floor

10:00 am - 10:30 am - REFRESHMENT BREAK

10:30 am - 11:30 am: CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS

Agency-Building Distribution
PAMELA BLALOCK, Senior Vice President, Career Distribution, National Life Financial Advisors; WILLIAM PIENIAS, Senior Vice President, Foresters Financial Services;
ModeratorSTEVE REEVES, LUTCF, LLIF, Vice President of Sales, Western & Southern Financial Group

Culture is critical to attracting and retaining talent. Exceptional results come from exceptional behavior and exceptional behavior comes from an exceptional culture. Great leaders create a culture that energizes behaviors and produces results. Through this session, we will share the top five essentials to change a culture and share experience on how to manage and sustain a culture of success and achievement.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon V

Multiple-Line Exclusive Agent Distribution
LUCAS WEY, Regional Associate Manager, Farm Bureau Insurance Company of Michigan; KRISTEL WOMBLES, Manager, Agency Services, State Farm; KRISTI ZIMMERMAN, Manager Field Sales Recruiting, COUNTRY Financial; ModeratorVICTOR J. VERCHEREAU, LUTCF, LLIF, Vice President, Marketing, Farm Bureau Insurance Company of Michigan

The power and value of the insurance sales career is often lost in the banter of “Financial Experts” and “In the Know Commentators.” The truth lies in the reality of what advisors deliver and the power of bringing financial security to family businesses and entire communities. Few professional careers can boast of life changing results at a critical time in the lives of the people they serve. So why does the insurance career seem to have such image issues with today’s consumers and potential career changers? This workshop will explore the challenges and seek solutions to these challenges!

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon I-II-III

Independent Producer Distribution
MICHAEL COX, Sale Vice President, Midland National;
TODD REIMERS, CLU, LLIF, Senior Vice President, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Assurity Life Insurance Company;
ModeratorJERRY BLAIR, LLIF, ChFC, Vice President, Chief Distribution and Sales Officer, Midland National

This session will focus on calling the right plays when working with your wholesalers versus managing through the scoreboard. We’ll discuss key performance “leading” indicators that provide predictive metrics (aka “lagging” results) to sales leaders and a guide for wholesaler activity management. This interactive session will suggest some results-proven KPI’s along with a method to scoring various activities.

Benefits of attending include:

• How to identify KPI’s and testing your beliefs

• A better understanding of the importance of leading versus lagging indicators

• Becoming more contemporary in sales leadership

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon IV

Brokerage Distribution
SUSAN GHALILI, Vice President & Chief Underwriter, John Hancock;
WILLIAM MOORE, Vice President, Underwriting & Medical, Munich Re;
DAVID WHEELER, Executive Vice President, Head of U.S. Mortality Markets, RGA;
ModeratorGARTH GARLOCK, Senior Vice President, Chief Distribution Officer, North American Company

Reinsurance is playing an increasingly complex role in the brokerage marketplace. Our speakers will explore the roles, markets, risk selection issues and potential future state of reinsurance. Three reinsurers will provide scope and varied perspective on this important factor in today’s evolving environment.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VI

Direct-to-Consumer Distribution
JENNIFER DOUGLAS, Research Director, Developmental Research, LIMRA;
PATRICK LEARY, LLIF, Corporate Vice President, Distribution Research, LIMRA;

Companies have struggled to access and engage consumers in working and middle class markets via traditional face-to-face distribution. Recent regulatory changes have accelerated interest in serving these markets through online capabilities. But which consumer groups are most receptive to buying life insurance online? Are there specific strategies that might motivate more people to consider an online purchase? This session will explore the reality around consumer preferences for the online experience.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VII-VIII

11:30 am - 1:00 pm - LUNCHEON

1:00 pm - 2:00 pm: CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS

Agency-Building Distribution
MATT MCDOWELL, Director of Targeted Office Support, Northwestern Mutual; NIKKI SORUM, MBA, Divisional Vice President, Thrivent Financial.ModeratorJESSICA MADIGAN, CLU, Director, Leadership Development, Securian Financial Group

Having a strong bench of leaders ready to step into a first line leadership role is to your benefit. Yet it is often times easier said than done. It requires strong recruiting and selection of first line leadership candidates, providing an environment where they have early exposure to and experience in a variety of first line leadership scenarios, and perhaps as equally important, time. In this session, you will hear from panelists who are preparing the next generation of leaders for first line leadership opportunities. They will share how they: 

• Identify the right leaders to bring along on the journey

• Prepare them for first line leadership, both before their appointment and after

• Handle retirements with a formal succession plan as well as replacements when there is performance turnover, and

• Incent leaders in waiting

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon V

MLEA Distribution (FMR Workshop)
SHARON KELLY, Vice President, Field Programs & Recognition, Prudential;
JOE O’CONNOR, FSA, MAAA, Assistant Vice President, Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company;
ModeratorELENA OCHIAN, Director, Field Compensation, Thrivent

Thinking about starting a formal teaming strategy? Started to form teams, but want to know what hurdles you might encounter? Then this session is for you! Come prepared with questions for a panel of individuals from companies in various stages of team development.

• What should you consider before developing a formal teaming program?

• How has (or will) teaming improve client experience?

• In what way can teams smooth the transition to the new regulatory environment?

• How do teams improve succession planning and business transition?

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon I-II-III

Independent Producer Distribution
DAVID FINE, Director Customer Experience Strategy, Pacific Life Insurance Company;
DARIA LEE SHARMAN, Assistant Vice President Strategy and Applied Analytics, Pacific Life Insurance Company;
ModeratorGREG REBER, Vice President, Independent Producer Network, Pacific Life Insurance Company

There seems to be a new “cure” for the Millennial market every day! From retail atelier to retail banking, companies are actively pursuing new ways to approach this increasingly diverse (and demanding) generation. We want to introduce you to how one company views the Affluent Millennial Market from the life insurance carrier perspective. We will introduce you to four critical market segments and provide suggestions on how to attract, work with, interact and communicate in ways that meeting the dynamic expectations of the ever-evolving Gen Y!

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon IV

Brokerage Distribution
TARIQ KHAN, CEO, Global Diversity Marketing;
VINCE VITIELLO, President, Global Diversity Marketing;
ModeratorNICHOLAS B. JASA, Vice President, Individual Sales, Assurity Life

This workshop will examine the ever-changing consumer demographic, the challenge Brokerage Distribution faces in selling to these markets, and how to best connect with consumers of all types. The discussion will include the opportunity potential and case studies for illustration.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VII-VIII

Direct-to-Consumer Distribution
JEFF HACKETT, Vice President, Protective Life; Moderator: LAUREN MCCALLUM, Client Relationship Manager, LIMRA.

Carriers have different options they can use to connect with consumers directly. They can use their own direct-to-consumer (D2C) distribution capabilities or partner with other organizations that may provide better access to their chosen target market. There are various considerations that come into play when deciding which options to pursue. 

Come to this interactive workshop and hear how one organization explored the various options available to them, defined their chosen strategy, and built their consumer direct capability for future success

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VI

2:00 pm - 2:15 pm - REFRESHMENT BREAK

2:15 pm - 3:15 pm: CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS

Agency-Building Distribution
ROBERT CLEMENTS, J.D., SCEC, Co-founder, Co-owner, Marketing Director, Benchmark Business Group, LLC;
ModeratorSHELLY MEIGHAN, CLU, MBA, Assistant Vice President, Principal Advisor Network

The best performing agencies, advisor organizations, and management units are run like businesses, using time-tested best practices, systems, and techniques for leveraging people. When it comes to solid growth while managing risk, including the new fiduciary standards, the system is the solution.

• Learn why agents should stop practicing and start running a business that works.

• Understand the key elements for growth and sustainability through best business practices.

• Discover how to approach DOL compliance with systems.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon V

MLEA Distribution
ELLEN KUGEL, Director, New Agent Development, MetLife;
SETH REDIGER, Sales District Leader, American Family;
ModeratorROB QUESNEL, Director, Talent Development, American Family

The advisor/agent landscape is changing faster than ever before. The ability to evolve from an advisor/agent to a business owner has become critical. This session will give you the chance to hear from leaders of two companies that have implemented successful programs to work with advisors/agents to help them leverage the resources available to assist in this evolution. Hear how these companies have taken advantage of these programs to build better business acumen and drive revenue growth. 

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon I-II-III

Independent Producer Distribution
RICHARD BRUGGER, VP, National Accounts,Prudential; CARLO MULVENNA, CLU, Vice President, Domestic Group Business, Pan-American US Group;
ModeratorLUKE COSME, Senior Vice President, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Mutual Trust Life Insurance Company

Markets are saturated. Traditional life insurance producers are declining. Competition for ultra high net worth clients is furious. How are we going to make our numbers this year? Worried? Don’t be. LIMRA reports that there are still millions of Americans under and underinsured and distribution channels still remain largely untapped.

Understanding those markets and distribution channels are the key to success. Join us in a conversation about finding and understanding untapped markets and untapped distribution. Whether it is a new product, a new process or a new approach…our goal for this meeting is to help you think differently about how we approach the marketplace and the distribution channels that we take us there.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon IV

Brokerage Distribution
DAVID BRAUN, Senior Vice President, Institutional Distribution, Highland Capital Brokerage;
CLARK SMITH, Senior Vice President, Head of Insurance and Annuity Sales, Sun Trust Private Wealth Management;
ModeratorJOHN KNOWLES, Vice President, Senior Account Director, Lincoln Financial

Many MGAs count the institutional space as critical to their present and future business. This workshop examines the key issues: Who is successful at this? What are the implications in light of the aging producer population? What are the keys to unlocking this terrific opportunity?

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VI

Direct-to-Consumer Distribution
JAMES GALLI, EVP, Business Strategy & Innovation, Legal & General America;
GLENN ROTHENBERG, Head of Marketing, Farmers Life Insurance;
ModeratorSTEVE GAERTNER, SVP, Distribution Strategies, ReMark USA

Looking to generate new revenue and create a pipeline of leads for distribution? Direct to consumer marketing enables insurance companies to generate new sales while adding value to distribution and enhancing the company’s brand.

• Learn how inforce marketing experiences can impact direct selling results to the broad market

• Hear about the importance of product, channels, and technology combined for optimal pathway to purchase customer experience

• Understand steps you can take to actualize this strategy for your organization

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon VII-VIII

3:15 pm - 3:45 pm - REFRESHMENT BREAK

3:45 pm - 4:45 pm - GENERAL SESSION

FLIP: Proven Strategies for Turning Challenge Into Opportunity and Change Into Competitive Advantage

The fact that the world is changing is not new to anyone. The more important question is: What do we need to do in the face of this change? With deep experience accelerating transformation in some of the world’s most innovative companies, Peter Sheahan knows firsthand how to take disruption and turn it to our advantage. In this case-study-rich session, Peter will explore best practices from multiple industries that have experienced transformative change, and unpack the key insights from those that profited from the change compared to those that became victims to it. He will specifically address the massive shift the financial services industry is facing with the DOL fiduciary regulations, and discuss how financial services professionals can turn the challenges of fee transparency and the best-interest fiduciary standard into opportunity.

Peter Sheahan - Business Trends Expert; Best Selling Author; and Founder and CEO, Karrikins Group

Grand Ballroom B/C, 3rd Floor

5:00 pm - 7:00 pm - HOSPITALITY RECEPTION


Sponsored by IMN

Members and Carriers Only

Friday, March 3, 2017

7:00 am - 8:00 am - CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST

8:00 am - 9:00 am: CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS

Agency-Building Distribution
FIONA CUDDY, Assistant Vice President, Distribution Operations Support, Great West Life;
FANETTE SINGER, Senior Vice President Marketing, Country Financial;
ModeratorROBERT “ROB” POPAZZI, CLU, CHS, BA, Assistant Vice President, Sales Force Growth and Development, Sun Life Financial Distributors

This session will address how the speed of technology change impacts advisors, how regulatory requirements are driving the need for documentation to support suitable practices, and the importance of integrated systems. Hear how companies are aligning the needs of their advisors and their customers while supporting the strategic direction of their company. How are they making all this happen? The “agency of the future” and the “advisor of the future” begins now!

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon I-II-III

MLEA Distribution
FIONA CUDDY, Assistant Vice President, Distribution Operations Support, Great West Life;
FANETTE SINGER, Senior Vice President Marketing, Country Financial;
ModeratorROBERT “ROB” POPAZZI, CLU, CHS, BA, Assistant Vice President, Sales Force Growth and Development, Sun Life Financial Distributors

This session will address how the speed of technology change impacts advisors, how regulatory requirements are driving the need for documentation to support suitable practices, and the importance of integrated systems. Hear how companies are aligning the needs of their advisors and their customers while supporting the strategic direction of their company. How are they making all this happen? The “agency of the future” and the “advisor of the future” begins now!

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon I-II-III

Independent Producer Distribution
LAURA MURACH, ACS, FLMI, Associate Research Director, LIMRA;
JAMES WONG, President, Partners Advantage Insurance Services;
ModeratorBECKY CUMMINGS, MBA, CIC, LUTCF, LLIF, CPIW, National Sales Manager, US Life & Annuities, Foresters Financial

The growth opportunities to a principal owner through sound, smart and strategic succession planning are limitless. Should you buy, sell, or merge? With the DOL rule, and our aging producers, learn how your organization can leverage this industry changing event. This workshop will inspire you to develop your game plan!

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon IV

Brokerage Distribution
CHAD FERRELL, Senior Vice President, Marketing, American National Insurance;
PAUL KLIMEK, CEO, Apptical Corp.;
GEORGE “CHIP” VAN DUESEN, IV, President, Diversified Brokerage Services, Inc.;
ModeratorDAVID SHERIDAN, Vice President, Managing Director, Brokerage, Protective

Technology can provide a real enhancement to production efficiency. This workshop focuses on STP, Quick Issue, and other new business processing tools. It addresses the options, benefits, and challenges of sales technology, including what BGAs want and how adoption can be maximized. Distributor, carrier and vendor perspectives will be offered.

Caribbean Ballroom, Salon V

Direct-to-Consumer Distribution


9:30 am - 10:30 am - GENERAL SESSION

Riding the Experience Business Wave: How to Harness the Power of Digital to Improve Customer Experiences

We are on the cusp of one of the largest waves of technology disruption and adoption in history: The Experience Business Wave. This new wave is driven by the desire of enterprises to leverage technology to better meet their consumers’ needs and their rising expectations to establish competitive advantage. Across industries, new and disruptive companies are setting a new bar for experiences that consumers are now demanding from every interaction. Late adopters soon realize that if they don’t transform and adopt similar technology, they won’t survive.

This session will illustrate how the power of digital channels (web and mobile) not only create significant opportunities for the insurance industry to deliver dynamic and personalized experiences for consumers and agents, but also enhance the experience for agents in their interactions with existing and prospective customers.

Christopher Young - Director of Industry Strategy for Financial Services, Adobe

Grand Ballroom, B/C, 3rd Floor

10:30 am - 11:15 am - GENERAL SESSION

DOL: The Silver Lining

The DOL fiduciary rule created a seismic shift in the financial services industry. While reactions among industry participants have been mostly negative, there are some genuinely positive implications of the DOL rule, irrespective of its ultimate scope. While uncertainty today is palpable, the rule has unleashed forces that will significantly transform the industry. One outcome of uncertainty is an unintended but massive gift to the business of income distribution planning. Insurers and distribution organizations have a major stake in exploiting this ​opportunity, but doing so takes newtools, insights and strategies. Those organizations that seize upon today’s uncertain and transforming marketplace are certain to emerge as tomorrow’s market leaders.

David Macchia - Founder and CEO, Wealth2k

Grand Ballroom B/C, 3rd Floor