GREENWICH, Conn., Jan 12, 2009 (BUSINESS WIRE) --
W. R. Berkley Corporation (NYSE: WRB) today named David A. Jordan president of Vela Insurance Services, Inc. He succeeds Richard P. Shemitis, who will serve as executive vice president - chief underwriting officer of Nautilus Insurance Group, LLC. Both appointments are effective immediately.
Vela underwrites excess and surplus lines casualty business with a primary focus on contractor and product liability coverages on behalf of W. R. Berkley Corporation member companies. With offices in Chicago, Illinois; Solvang, California; and Radnor, Pennsylvania, Vela underwrites a variety of classes nationwide exclusively through its network of appointed excess and surplus lines brokers.
Mr. Jordan joins Vela with more than 28 years of experience as a senior executive in the property and casualty insurance industry, including, most recently, as chief operating officer of a leading excess and surplus lines broker in the United States. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Connecticut College.
Nautilus Insurance Group, comprised of Nautilus Insurance Company and Great Divide Insurance Company, is one of the leading commercial excess and surplus and specialty lines carriers in the United States. Its products are distributed exclusively through appointed general agents who are authorized in a specific underwriting territory as surplus lines producers.
Mr. Shemitis joined W. R. Berkley Corporation in 1996, helping to form Vela and serving as its president since its formation. He has nearly 37 years of insurance industry experience.
In announcing the appointments, William R. Berkley, chairman and chief executive officer, said: "We continue to enhance the executive ranks of our specialty operating units. David's considerable experience and demonstrated leadership skills make him particularly well suited for his new role at Vela. Similarly, Rich's broad operational and management achievements, coupled with his extensive understanding of Nautilus Insurance Group's business, are vital attributes for this newly created position at Nautilus."
Founded in 1967, W. R. Berkley Corporation is an insurance holding company that is among the largest commercial lines writers in the United States and operates in five segments of the property casualty insurance business: specialty insurance, regional property casualty insurance, alternative markets, reinsurance, and international.
SOURCE: W. R. Berkley Corporation
W. R. Berkley Corporation
Karen A. Horvath, 203-629-3000
Vice President - External
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