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2020 Board Member Candidate

Ying Zhao, FSA 2006, MAAA, FRM
Ernst & Young LLP

Election Message: 

I am an actuary with rich professional experience and a strong track record of serving our community. It would be my great honor to serve you as a Board member of the SOA.

Actuaries are facing challenges from technological disruptions, emerging professions, and structural changes to the industry and customers we serve. We need to think creatively and act quickly to turn these challenges into opportunities.

If elected, I would focus on preparing actuaries to become the leader in predictive analytics, AI, and other disrupting technologies for the insurance industry and beyond. We should help actuaries grow from technical gurus to business leaders and lead the innovation and transformation of the insurance industry. We should enhance our brand name and expand globally to create a strong sense of community for all members. With a strong foundation in education and research, the SOA can achieve its strategic goals through collaborating with other actuarial organizations, connecting with technology communities, and engaging with its members and constituents. Together, we will keep actuaries highly sought-after professionals for decades to come.       

Brief description of current work:

I am a Senior Manager, Insurance and Actuarial Advisor Services (IAAS) at Ernst & Young LLP. My recent focus has been helping my clients implementing accounting changes through model, system, and process transformations.

Primary Area(s) of Practice (per SOA Directory):

Life insurance


I have over 18 years of experience working in the Life and Annuity space in various professional settings, from a large multi-national company to an expatriate assignment abroad, from an insurance startup to a major actuarial consulting firm. My work has covered many technical areas and afforded me various leadership roles in product management, risk management, transformation, to name a few.

My diverse technical background and rich experience in cross-functioning collaboration have prepared me well for my current line of work – help companies implementing accounting changes through business transformation and analyzing strategic implications. I have a passion for helping people through problem-solving and a deep appreciation for the relationships I’ve built over the years.

I have been an active volunteer for the SOA for many years. Started as an exam writer, I soon discovered my passion for helping actuaries improve leadership skills. My recent volunteer experience includes the following:

  • 2016 October – Present, Chair, Leadership and Development Section, SOA
  • 2019 January – Present, Member, Mentoring Pilot Program working group, SOA
  • 2018 January – 2018 December, Member, Joint Committee for Career Encouragement and Actuarial Diversity (SOA, CAS)
  • Frequent author for The Actuary magazine and various SOA section newsletters
  • Various speaking roles at the SOA conferences

Additional Info:

I love both the indoors and the outdoors. I enjoy reading books and going to movies during Chicago’s long winters. I love traveling with my family to new places. So far, our trips to South Africa and Iceland are the most memorable. I am also a passionate runner with a few marathons under my belt.  My favorite races are Ragnar and 100-on-100 relays where my friends and I jammed in a van, passed batons in the wee hours, and cheered each other on in dirt and sweat.