Brenna Westinghouse

Risk that is always evolving

“My working life started by complete happenstance at a squash match at university” said Brenna, focuses on protecting professions such as lawyers, architects and financial advisers from the risks of legal action being taken against them. Brenna, who is American has now worked on both sides of the Atlantic and has gone from advising businesses that face the risks to now being the person that takes those risks away from them.

Being any sort of professional adviser today means you face a whole range of risks that can bring your business to its knees. That might be new laws, changes to regulations or just how the world is evolving. For example, architects are working on increasingly tall buildings and with new materials. Lawyers are working on cases that will change the world. And these risks are different around the world – they all need protection and that is why they come to buy insurance in London.

Brenna began her career with Marsh, one of the largest broking houses in the world. Initially she worked mainly with financial services firms in the US, but then was offered a secondment to London. “London is the birthplace of insurance, it’s where it was invented, so it was a really exciting opportunity to move here.” She shifted to working with the world’s largest law firms and describes the process of finding them the right insurance as “like putting together a puzzle”. Nothing is standard and the risks keep changing as the world evolves.

The next move was from adviser to risk taker – working for the insurer Beazley, a leading firm for insuring professionals.  “I am surrounded by thinkers” she says. “We are talking to firms about the issues they face and then to brokers and insurers about how to find solutions. London is unique in that a lot of this is face to face, you are not just sitting behind a computer. It is a great mix  of talking to people and trying to fix problems.” of