Senior Management Team

Underwriting Leadership

Nicole Waddill, Head of Property & Inland Marine

Nicole has over twenty five years of underwriting experience in the property & casualty industry, including twenty years in excess & surplus lines. Nicole spent over nine years as an Executive Underwriter within the newly formed Commercial Property Division of Kinsale Insurance Company. Her portfolio included a wide range of hard to place property and inland marine risks. Prior to Kinsale, Nicole spent 14 years within the Special Property Division of Essex Insurance Company, a subsidiary of Markel Corp, as a Territory Manager and Executive Underwriter. Nicole began her career as an underwriter with Continental Insurance Company. Nicole earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Bob Linkous, Head of General & Contractors Casualty

Bob has over thirty years of underwriting and leadership experience. Most recently, Bob spent six years in the General Casualty Division of James River Insurance Company, focused on underwriting commercial liability accounts. Prior to James River, Bob was an Underwriting Manager in the Mid-Atlantic region of the Utica National Insurance Group. Bob has also held underwriting positions at Selective Insurance, Hanover Insurance, Continental Insurance and Markel Corp. Bob earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from The University of Virginia and a Juris Doctor degree from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University.

Bryan Farrar, Head of Excess Casualty

Bryan has more than thirty years of casualty and excess casualty underwriting and leadership experience. Prior to joining Richmond National, Bryan spent nine years as an excess casualty underwriter at the newly formed Verus Underwriting Managers, a division of W.R. Berkley. Prior to joining Verus, Bryan spent nine years within the Industrial Casualty Division of Colony Specialty Insurance Company and was involved in starting Colony’s excess casualty division. Bryan also has held underwriting positions at Berkley Mid-Atlantic Group and Crum & Forster Insurance.

Jeff Austin, Head of Professional Liability

Jeff has over twenty-five years of underwriting and leadership experience in the professional liability insurance industry. Prior to joining Richmond National, Jeff spent ten years within the professional liability division of Verus Underwriting Managers, a division of W.R. Berkley and served as Vice President of Professional Lability. Previous to Verus, Jeff was with Colony Specialty Insurance Company for five years as Underwriting Manager of the E&O Division. Prior to Colony, Jeff was with Apex Insurance Services for eleven years as Territorial Underwriting Manager responsible for underwriting and marketing of public entity products lines nationwide. Jeff earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Risk Management from Virginia Commonwealth University and holds a RPLU designation.

Technology and Business Operations

Scott Savage, Chief Information Officer

Scott has over fifteen years of IT and software development experience, including over ten years working within the E&S or specialty insurance industry. Prior to joining Richmond National, Scott spent four years as a technical consultant for Ippon Technologies. Scott also worked at Kinsale Insurance Company where he spent four years serving as a Director in the Software Development Group. Prior to Kinsale, Scott spent two years at Elephant Insurance Services as a Core Systems Developer. Prior to Elephant, Scott spent three years as a Developer at James River Insurance Company. Scott is an AWS Certified DevOps Professional and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Alex Albro, Chief Technology Officer

Alex has over fifteen years of enterprise architecture, cloud infrastructure, security, networking and disaster recovery experience, including over ten years of experience within the E&S insurance and financial services industries. Alex was one of the early employees at Kinsale Insurance Company where he spent seven years serving in several roles, including Network & Infrastructure Manager and Team Lead. Prior to Kinsale, Alex spent 2 years at James River Insurance Company. Alex has also worked at Capital One Financial, Ippon Technologies and Adaptavist where he architected cloud and DevOps enterprise solutions. Alex is an AWS Certified DevOps Professional and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from James Madison University.

Jamie Bock, Chief Human Resources Officer

Jamie has over fifteen years of experience in human resources and corporate recruiting. Prior to joining Richmond National, Jamie spent five years as the Director of Human Resources for the Richmond, Virginia based, U.S. arm of Ippon Technologies, a global technology consulting firm focused on implementing cloud and digital solutions. Jamie’s prior work experience includes roles at ICF International and Aerotek, Inc. Jamie earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Shippensburg University.

Executive Leadership

Joe Kavanagh, Director, President & Chief Executive Officer

Joe has over twenty-five years of corporate finance, merchant banking and financial advisory experience within the insurance industry. During his career, Joe has worked with a number of entrepreneurial management teams to form and capitalize several successful specialty insurance companies. Prior to founding Richmond National, Joe spent three years in the investment banking group of Compass Point Research & Trading. Prior to Compass Point, Joe spent fourteen years at FBR & Co. in Arlington, Va., where he helped to build, and ultimately lead, FBR’s Insurance Investment Banking Group. Prior to joining FBR, Joe worked in the Financial Institutions Group of First Union Securities, subsequently Wachovia Securities, in Charlotte, N.C. Joe’s prior experience included working for the Marsh & McLennan Companies and CIBC Oppenheimer in New York, NY. Joe earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Washington & Lee University and a Master of Business Administration from the Stern School of Business at New York University.

Phil Stephens, Chief Underwriting Officer

Phil has over thirty years of underwriting experience in the property & casualty industry, including over twenty years of experience in excess & surplus lines. Phil spent seven years at the newly formed Kinsale Insurance Company and was its first Property and Inland Marine product line leader. Prior to Kinsale, Phil spent twelve years at Essex Insurance Company, a subsidiary of Markel Corp, and served as an Executive Underwriter within the Special Property Division. Earlier in his career, Phil worked in underwriting roles at Fireman’s Fund Insurance and Continental Insurance. Phil earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brandeis University.

Doug Carson, Chief Financial Officer

Doug has over twenty years of corporate finance, merchant banking, financial advisory and financial operations experience within the insurance industry. Prior to Richmond National, Doug worked in the investment banking group of Compass Point Research & Trading. Prior to Compass Point, Doug held positions of increasing responsibility within the investment banking group of FBR & Co. in Arlington, Va. Prior to joining FBR, Doug worked in the Financial Institutions Group of First Union Securities, subsequently Wachovia Securities, in Charlotte, N.C. Doug’s prior experience included working for USAA Insurance, Freddie Mac and the Federal Reserve Board of Governors. Doug earned a Bachelor of Science degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity University and a Master of Business Administration from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.

Aimee Venn, Chief Claims Officer

Aimee has over twenty-five years of claims experience working with Lloyd’s syndicates in the U.S., admitted carriers and E&S companies. Aimee joined Richmond National from Ark Syndicate Management where she served for five years as U.S. Claims Coordinator. Prior to Ark, Aimee worked at Markel Corp. for twelve years as an Executive Claims Examiner in their E&S division. Before working at Markel, Aimee worked for Utica National Insurance Group and Sentry Insurance Company as a Senior Claims Adjuster. Aimee graduated cum laude from Randolph Macon College and was a member of the Phi Betta Kappa honor society.

James Flajser, Chief Strategy Officer, Chief Risk Officer

James has over fifteen years of corporate finance, merchant banking, and strategic and financial advisory experience within the insurance industry. James joined Richmond National from B. Riley Securities (the successor to FBR & Co.) where he worked for over 15 years. Most recently, James served as Director, Insurance Investment Banking. Prior to this role, James held positions of increasing responsibility within the insurance investment banking group of B. Riley Securities. James earned a Bachelor of Arts from Duke University.

David Vanalek, Chief Legal and Compliance Officer

David has over twenty years of experience working as an attorney and claims professional in the property & casualty industry. David joined Richmond National from Markel where he worked for over fourteen years. Most recently, David served as the Claims Chief Operating Officer for Markel North America and Bermuda which included its excess and surplus lines operations as well as their other property & casualty and reinsurance units. Prior to this role, David spent eleven years as a Claims Director and Claims Manager overseeing the professional and management liability lines. Before joining Markel, David worked for nine years as a litigator and defense attorney specializing in insurance claims. David earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California at Los Angeles, and a Juris Doctor from the University of California, Davis School of Law.