November 2017

Chairperson’s Corner

By Bill Rearden

The Entrepreneurial & Innovation Section (E&I) celebrates its 15thbirthday this fall. By its 30th birthday the actuarial profession will likely be discussing the impacts of Singularity where computers, genetics, nanotechnology, robotics and artificial intelligence are all fused into one.

This coming decade will be an exciting time for entrepreneurship with sci-fi like innovations leading us into the 4thindustrial revolution. Many of us have recently heard or read that “we will experience more change in the coming 10 years than we have in the last 50.” Evidence of this new and exciting era and its disruptive capabilities are emerging quickly. Many professionals, including actuaries, are asking relevant questions in preparation for the changes to come. The E&I section will continue to be a source of insights through this newsletter and sponsored presentations at SOA meetings.

This year at the 2017 SOA Annual Meeting & Exhibit in Boston, E&I sponsored three sessions. The first session explored intrapreneurship, and how teams in large companies can work together to innovate. The other two sessions focused on the digital and technological innovations that drive the InsurTech revolution. In the latter two sessions we discussed the nuts and bolts of combining artificial intelligence, blockchain, cloud and big data. Then we detailed how these capabilities are disrupting the traditional insurance business model. Attendees of these sessions gained insights on innovation issues. The E&I council looks forward to sponsoring more sessions that benefit our members and the actuarial profession at large.

Over the last several years E&I section members have had free access to getAbstract, which has unfortunately been underutilized. This spring the council decided to replace it with full digital access to the New York Times. We hope this new offering, valued at over $200, will benefit E&I section members.

I would like to thank our outgoing council members for their dedication over the last three years. Pauline Reimer has been actively involved in coordinating different networking events at all of the SOA meetings during her term. Shehreen Zaman managed the council treasury and secretary roles during her first two years and this last year was actively preparing research initiatives that will benefit the section in the coming years. Stephen Camilli supported the council in officer roles previously as vice chair and recently as the chair; he also helped the E&I section lead several initiatives and coordinate many sessions at SOA meetings during his term.

I am honored to have been elected E&I council chair for the coming 2017–2018 term. This year the council welcomes five newly elected team members. We are always looking for help with the many initiatives the council is working on to benefit the section. Feel free to participate by reaching out to the council team and contribute articles to the E&I section’s Innovators & Entrepreneurs newsletter.

Bill Rearden, ASA, is co-founder and strategy consultant at Ironbound Consulting Group in New York City. He can be contacted at