Personal Branding: Becoming a Surety Influencer
In an era when shrinking attention spans are compounded by an inundation of social media, we have to find a way to leave a positive (and memorable) impression on the people we engage with. Personal branding is the deliberate effort to position an individual as an expert in their industry, elevating their credibility, and ultimately advancing their career. In other words, personal branding is how to be an influencer without having to resort to a TiKToK dance.
Two surety professionals, Courtney DeCroes, from the broker perspective, and Mike Bond, from the carrier perspective, will lead a session on building a personal brand within the industry. They will share their views on the importance of a personal brand and provide practical advice on how to build one. They will also share tips on optimizing your LinkedIn profile, a platform of paramount importance for establishing and maintaining your professional personal brand.
This session is aimed at all surety professionals who want to improve their personal brand, elevate their professional profile and become a surety influencer.
Chief Underwriting Officer – National Accounts
Michael Bond joined Markel Surety in January of 2021 as Chief Underwriting Officer – National Accounts. In that role, he oversees the underwriting of accounts requiring surety capacity from $50 million to $500 million. The National Accounts offering adds to Markel Surety’s well-established track record and existing business in Contract and Commercial Surety. Markel Surety’s primary mission is to help our partners profitably grow their business through all market cycles.
Prior to Markel Surety, Mr. Bond was Head of Surety for Euler Hermes North America. Prior to Euler Hermes, Mr. Bond work at Zurich Insurance Company in a variety of executive roles, including the Head of the Zurich Credit & Political Risk team and the Head of Zurich Surety. As Head of Zurich Surety, he was responsible for a $600 million surety business, which serves contract and commercial surety customers in North America and around the world.
Prior to joining Zurich, Mr. Bond served as a senior insurance officer at Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), underwriting political risk insurance coverage for projects in a variety of industrial sectors. Previously, Mr. Bond worked as a municipal development advisor with the U.S. Peace Corps in Honduras and as a project manager with Law Environmental in Atlanta, Georgia.
Mr. Bond is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Surety and Fidelity Association of America (SFAA), the Management Committee of the International Credit Insurance & Surety Association (ICISA) and the Executive Committee of the Pan American Surety Association. Mr. Bond holds a B.S. from Rutgers University, an M.S. from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. from Loyola College. He is fluent in Spanish. He resides in Olney, Maryland. He is actively involved in fundraising and advocacy on the behalf of the ALS Association.
Director of Surety
Courtney is the Director of Surety for AssuredPartners in the MidAtlantic Region. She is a member of the agency's executive leadership team where she oversees and manages the surety team in Rockville, Maryland as well as carrier relationships.
Courtney's expertise extends to providing both commercial and contract surety solutions. As a devoted advocate for her clients, Courtney specializes in helping businesses across various sectors, including construction, nonprofits, hospitality, government contractors and real estate, navigate the complex landscape of Surety. Her approach is characterized by a deep commitment to understanding her clients' unique needs, business plans, challenges, and risk tolerances. By forging meaningful connections and delivering tailored advice, she empowers her clients to achieve their business and profitability goals. Her track record of success and unwavering dedication to her clients has earned her a reputation as a trusted partner in their businesses.
Her dedication to staying current on industry issues through active involvement in both construction and surety industry associations positions her as a true industry leader. This commitment not only benefits her clients but also contributes to AssuredPartners' business development efforts. She currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Associated Builders and Contractors, VA Chapter and on Board of Directors for the American Subcontractors Association, Metro Washington Chapter. For NASBP, she serves as the Region 9-Regional Director and she sits on the Small & Emerging Business and International Committees.
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