Board of Directors

Chair: Hilde Vernaillen, Chair of the Management Committee, P&V (Belgium)

Hilde Vernaillen has been working in the financial services industry for more than twenty years and is a committed defender of the mutual/cooperative business model in insurance. She is a regular conference speaker on various subjects of insurance, mutual and cooperative business. 

Hilde was appointed as CEO of P&V Insurance and VIVIUM in 2011 after twenty years in the P&V Group, first in the bank and later on in the insurance companies. 

Since October 2016, she has been Chair of ICMIF and has served on the ICMIF Board since 2011. She was also President of AMICE (Association of Mutual Insurers and Insurance Cooperatives in Europe) between June 2013 and June 2016. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Euresa, a collaborative and networking tool between 13 European mutual and cooperative insurance companies, and President of the Board of Directors of Febecoop which promotes and defends the co-operative model at regional, federal, European and international level.

Furthermore, she is Vice-President of the Board and a member of the Executive Committee of the Belgian insurance association (Assuralia), and several other organisations in Belgium and other European countries.

Vice-Chair: Jean-Louis Davet, Chief Executive, Groupe VYV (France)

Jean-Louis Davet is Chief Executive of VYV, the leading French group in health insurance and services. Formed in September 2017, the VYV Group brings together MGEN, Harmonie and ISTYA mutualist groups. VYV is the largest heath insurer in France, covering 10 million people and owning 900 medical and care centres.

Jean-Louis is a Board Member and Vice Chair (for Europe) of ICMIF. He is also member of the Steering Committee of the Insurance Development Forum (IDF). He has been instrumental in major international outcomes of the insurance industry, such as Solvency II and various French social protection policies. He is strongly involved in digitalisation, data strategy and privacy issues in the health and insurance sector, as well as in the development of mutualist models in China.

Jean-Louis started his career as a professor in mathematics at Paris University and as a researcher at CNRS (French National Scientific Research Center). In 1988 he switched to industry as Chief Executive of the French subsidiary of FESTO group, a German company specialized in automation. From 1992 to 2006, Jean-Louis was a strategy consultant working for leading companies in various industries, before specialising in insurance and social protection. In 2006, he joined the executive committee of Mutualité Française (FNMF), the French federation of health mutuals, before joining MGEN in 2008.

He graduated from Ecole Centrale de Paris engineering and business school in 1983, and is a Doctor in Mathematics from Paris 6 University (1987).

Vice-Chair: Tom Gitogo, Group CEO, CIC Insurance Group (Kenya)

Tom is the Group Chief Executive Officer of CIC Insurance Group. Tom has an MBA in Strategic Management and holds a BSc in Civil Engineering from the University of Nairobi. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) as well as the Institute of Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya (ICPSK).


Tom is a fellow member of Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) and a Fellow member of the Kenya Institute of Management. He has served as the Deputy Chairman of the Association of Kenya Insurers (AKI) and the Chairman of its Life Insurance Council. Tom also sits in the Life Insurance Committee of the African Insurance Organization (AIO) and is a Member of the Institute of Directors. In 2012 he won the coveted CEO of the Year Award in the prestigious COYA awards. He is also a Government appointed Board member, serving in the Policy Holders Compensation Fund, as well as an Executive Board member of ICMIF.


He started his career with Price Waterhouse Nairobi in 1991 before moving to Price Waterhouse London from 1992 to 1997 in the firm's Assurance and Business Advisory Services line specializing in financial services sector. He has worked with British American Insurance where he rose to the position of Finance Director. Before joining CIC, Tom was the Chief Executive of Pan Africa Insurance Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries. He is married and has two daughters and a son.

Luis Pierrini, President, Triunfo (Argentina)

Luis Pierrini

Current Positions:
President & CEO of Triunfo Cooperativa Limitada de Seguros | Since 2004
Director at Mendoza Stock Exchange | Since 2011
President of RASA (Argentine Reinsurers INC) | Since 2012
Director at CEM (Council of Businessmen of Mendoza) | Since 2004
Member of AACMS (Argentine Association of Insurance Cooperatives and Mutuals) | Since 2006


Denis Dubois, President and Chief Operating Officer, Desjardins Sécurité financière (Canada)

Denis Dubois is Executive Vice-President, Wealth Management and Life and Health Insurance of Desjardins Group, and the President and Chief Operating Officer of Desjardins Financial Security. He oversees the development of solutions and products geared to the specialized savings and life and health insurance needs of members and clients, and the activities of Desjardins Securities, Desjardins Investments and Desjardins Global Asset Management. Until October 2019, he was Executive Vice-President of the Property and Casualty (P&C) Insurance Executive Division of Desjardins Group and the President and Chief Operating Officer of Desjardins General Insurance Group (DGIG)'s subsidiaries.

Mr. Dubois joined Desjardins Group in 2003 and held a series of senior management positions within DGIG before being appointed to his current positions. After heading up business development and sales for The Personal—DGIG's group insurance subsidiary—he was appointed Vice-President of Claims, and then Vice-President of Market Development and General Manager of Ontario, Atlantic and Western Regions. He then took on the role of Chief Integration Officer and managed the integration of State Farm Canada into Desjardins Group in 2015. Before his appointment as President and COO of DGIG, Mr. Dubois was Senior Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of DGIG's subsidiaries.

Mr. Dubois has a degree in Actuarial Science from Université Laval and is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries and of the Casualty Actuarial Society.

Rob Wesseling, President and CEO, The Co-operators (Canada)

Since joining The Co-operators in 1997, Rob has held increasingly senior leadership roles within the group of companies, culminating with his appointment as President and CEO of The Co-operators Group Ltd on December 1, 2016. From 2007 until 2016, he was Chief Operating Officer of The Sovereign General and, in November 2011, assumed the additional role of Executive Vice President, National Property and Casualty (P&C) for all P&C operations across The Co-operators group of companies.

Rob has been instrumental in leading flood resiliency efforts in Canada and engaging all levels of government, the academic community and various industries, to develop a complete solution for Canadians. In this capacity, Rob is a founding director and member of Partners for Action Advisory Board and a board member of the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction.

Rob is also a board member of the International Cooperative and Mutual Insurance Federation (ICMIF), where he sits on the Executive Committee, and is a member of the Insurance Development Forum (IDF) Steering Committee. He is also a member of the Business Council of Canada and a board member of the Canadian Cooperative Investment Fund. Rob holds a B.A. with distinction in Theoretical Mathematics and MSc. of Applied Statistics from the University of Guelph where he graduated in 1996. He obtained a Chartered Insurance Professional designation in 1999.

Rob lives with his family in Guelph, Ontario and is an active volunteer in the local community, coaching youth sport and mentoring young athletes.


Christoph Lamby, Member of the Board of Management, R+V Versicherung AG (Germany)

Dr. Christoph Lamby began his professional career at Gerling, Cologne, in 1989. From 1997 to 2000 he worked for Gerling Global Re in New York. After joining R+V Re in 2002 he became a Member of the Board of Management of R+V Versicherung AG in 2004, with responsibility for the Reinsurance Business Unit.

Dr. Lamby received his PhD at the Faculty of Economics of the University of Cologne in 1993.


Klaus-Jürgen Heitmann, CEO, HUK-Coburg (Germany)

Klaus-Jürgen Heitmann has been Chairman of the Board of HUK-COBURG Insurance Group since 2017. With more than 11 million insured vehicles, HUK-COBURG is Germany’s largest motor insurer.

After his training as an insurance clerk, followed by his studies in Industrial Engineering and Management specialising in Insurance Economics, Klaus-Jürgen Heitmann launched his career at a management consulting firm in 1996. In 2003, he started working at HUK-COBURG Insurance Group and was appointed a member of the Board of Directors in the following year.

Klaus-Jürgen Heitmann is involved in association work both on a national and on an international level. Apart from his membership in the ICMIF board, he is a board member of AMICE (Association of Mutual Insurers and Insurance Cooperatives in Europe). On a national level, Klaus-Jürgen Heitmann is a board member of ARGE, the national association of mutual insurance companies, and a member of several panels of the German Insurance Association GDV e. V.

Pierluigi Stefanini, Chairman, Unipol Group (Italy)

Pierluigi Stefanini was born in 1953. He is Chairman of the Unipol Group and Vice Chairman of the subsidiary UnipolSai Asicurazioni.

He has held positions in the banking, insurance and cooperative sectors.

He was Chairman of Legacoop Bologna from 1990 to 1998 and of Coop Adriatica Soc. Cooperativa from 1998 to 2006.

In 1998, he joined the Unipol Group as member of the Board of Directors of Finsoe, a finance company of the cooperative sector, a position he holds to date.

At the same time, he was appointed Director of Unipol Assicurazioni S.p.A. and thereafter, in 2002, of Unipol Banca S.p.A.

In 2006, he was appointed Chairman of Unipol Assicurazioni, and, in 2007, he took office as Chairman of Unipol Gruppo Finanziario S.p.A. following its incorporation. At the same time, he also held the chairmanship of the Unipolis Foundation.

Stefanini is an ICMIF Board Member and currently also holds the office of Chairman of Euresa, European network of fourteen mutual and cooperative insurance companies, as well as that of President of the ASviS Assembly, Alleanza Italiana per lo Sviluppo Sostenibile (Italian alliance for sustainable development) made up of non-profit organizations to support the development of the Italian Agenda to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Masami Hirota, President, Kokumin Kyosai co-op (Japan)

Mr Masami Hirota is President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Kokumin Kyosai co-op (National Federation of Workers and Consumers Kyosai Cooperatives, formerly known as Zenrosai or the National Federation of Workers and Consumers Insurance Cooperatives until 1 June 2019). Based on the cooperative principle, Kokumin Kyosai co-op provides mutual help using insurance system called “Kyosai” in Japanese for its members. It was established in 1957 and has mainly been run by trade union members as a part of the workers’ welfare movement: however, its service expands to workers and consumers in the community today.

Mr Hirota joined Hitachi, Ltd., one of the leading electronics companies in Japan. Soon he also started to serve in the trade union and held senior positions in its group unions throughout his career. He joined Kokumin Kyosai co-op as Head Director of Kanagawa prefectural office in 1998, and then became Head Director of Eastern Regional Office in 2015. In August 2019, he was elected as President of Kokumin Kyosai co-op by the General Assembly.

Fumio Yanai, Chair, AOA and President of the Board of Directors, Zenkyoren (Japan)

Mr. Fumio Yanai has been President of Zenkyoren since July 2017. Zenkyoren (National Mutual Insurance Federation of Agricultural Cooperatives) has a business scale of JPY57.7 trillion (USD 514.8 billion) in total assets and JPY 5.9 trillion (USD 53.1 billion) in premium and other insurance income.

Mr. Yanai joined Zenkyoren in April 1979. Since then he has held a number of various position at the organization, including responsibility for the project of integrating Zenkyoren’s 47 prefectural federations with the national federation. Previously, he was General Manager of the Accounting Department, Corporate Administration Department and Human Resources Department. After a period as Senior Managing Director in charge of Corporate Administration, Mr. Yanai was appointed President and is now leading Zenkyoren’s efforts to promote more community-rooted businesses and efficient operations in order to achieve Zenkyoren’s mission to provide a wide range of security to its members/policyholders and support further development of local communities.

At ICMIF, he serves as Chair of the Asia and Oceania Association (AOA), Member of the Executive Committee and Member of the Board of Directors.

He believes in “having courage to change what should be changed, but also having strength to preserve what cannot be changed”, to fulfil cooperative responsibilities in these changing business environments.

Chris Black, Chief Executive, FMG (New Zealand)

In both his personal and professional life, FMG's Chief Executive Chris Black treats risk as a necessary and positive ingredient for achievement. Given the importance of the agricultural sector to NZ Inc., he feels the role FMG plays as a mutual in providing advice to help rurally minded people and businesses in New Zealand take risks in order to grow and fulfil their aspirations is very important.

Chris joined FMG in 2008 and is driven by its philosophy to give rural New Zealand a better deal. As an Otago University and Victoria University graduate, Chris held many varied and senior roles within the finance and banking sectors, including time with international firms such as Citibank, SG Warburg and NAB, before joining FMG.

At an industry level, Chris is currently President of the Insurance Council of NZ (ICNZ) and is also on the Board of ICMIF and AOA.

Aris Alip, Founder and Chairman, CARD MRI (The Philippines)

Dr. Jaime Aristotle Alip is the Founder and Chairman of the Center for Agriculture and Rural Development Mutually Reinforcing Institutions (CARD MRI), the 2008 Ramon Magsaysay Awardee for Public Service. Started in 1986, CARD MRI is a group of 21 mutually reinforcing institutions serving 4.33 million poor families. Its microinsurance arm, CARD MBA, insures more than 14 million individuals representing 21% of all insured Filipinos. In addition, he brought to other Southeast Asian countries CARD’s model of poverty eradication by establishing its presence in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Indonesia

Under Dr. Alip’s leadership, CARD MRI was also awarded the Prize for Excellence in Community Economic Development by the Southern New Hampshire University in 2007; People Power People Recognition Award by Former President Corazon C. Aquino in 2005; the Global Excellence for Microfinance by the Grameen Foundation, USA in 2003; and the Flame of Excellence Award by USAID and The Microfinance Coalition for Standards of the Philippines in 2000.

Dr. Alip is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School, having completed the 3-year Owner/President Management (OPM) Program in 2007 and was given the Excellence Award on Strategy. He obtained his doctorate degree in Organization Development from the Southeast Asia Interdisciplinary Development Institute (SAIDI) in 2002. He received his bachelor and master’s degrees in agricultural economics/marketing from the University of the Philippines in 1978 and 1983 respectively. He also attended the Executive Program in Global Management at the Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, USA) in 1999.


Juan A. Lugo Meléndez, Executive President, Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples (Puerto Rico)

Current Executive President of Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples, Juan’s professional career has been closely bound to this cooperative insurer for over 40 years ago.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a major in accounting from the University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras Campus. Subsequently, he also obtained a Master’s degree in Business Administration, with a major in finance and marketing from Inter American University of Puerto Rico.

Juan began his career as accountant and comptroller at the Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples in 1971, fulfilling tasks related to the analysis of financial statements, reinsurance, and production of yearly financial status reports. He was also in charge of preparing the statutory Annual Statement for the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance of Puerto Rico. Subsequently, in response to the company’s sustained growth, he went on to become Vice President of Finance, a position which he occupied until his retirement in 2001. However, he continued serving as a consultant to the cooperative’s president from 2001 to 2009 in areas related to finance and investment, and in the management of the Contemporary Art Collection for the organisation. From 2009 to 2017, the experienced executive re-joined the Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples management team as a consultant in finance, investment, and reinsurance, in addition to sitting on several advisory committees and boards of trustees. On 1 September 2017, Lugo began working as Executive Vice President and held that position until being officially appointed Executive President early in January 2018.

Lugo is married to Mizraím Cortés and they have five children.

Kibong Seo, President & CEO, NongHyup Life (Republic of Korea)

Since joining the Nonghyup Financial Group in 1986, Mr. SEO has devoted his life to implementing cooperative spirit for more than 30 years. He has emphasized communication with customers through work experiences in various parts of Nonghyup Financial Group. After taking over as CEO of NongHyup Life in January 2017, he has developed specialized products for farmers and is working to differentiate as a cooperative insurer. Especially, he has been successful in launching mobile platform “All-one Bank” that offers various kinds of life financial services such as remittance, billing, travel insurance, and loans etc. all-in-one-application. He is especially interested in the impact of 4th industry revolution and Fin-tech development on the finance and insurance industry.

NongHyup Life is the biggest cooperative-based insurance company in Korea.

Izak Smit, CEO, PPS (South Africa)

Jens Henrikson, President and CEO, Folksam (Sweden)

Jens Henriksson has an extensive experience from financial markets, public finances, private companies and international economic affairs, gained during his years as an advisor and policy maker in government, international agencies and policy organs, and president and CEO in private companies. Since September 2013, he has been the President and CEO of Folksam, Sweden’s largest insurance company, active both in life and non-life. Folksam has yearly premiums of around SEK 35 billion (USD 4 billion), and SEK 300 billion (USD 35 billion) in assets under management. Every second Swede has an insurance policy with Folksam.

Before joining Folksam he was a Senior Vice President with NASDAQ OMX, the world’s largest exchange company, and the President of the Swedish Stock Exchange, NASDAQ OMX Stockholm. From 1994 to 2006, Jens was with the Swedish Ministry of Finance where he served as State Secretary from 2002 to 2006. At the Ministry, he was responsible for economic development, structural reforms, international financial affairs, Ecofin-related issues, public finances, public procurement, government real estate, and statistics issues. He worked closely with Sweden’s Riksbank and the financial markets and was responsible for IMF, World Bank, NIB, EIB, CEB, EBRD, and Paris Club matters. 

From 2008 to 2010, Jens was Executive Director at IMF in Washington, D.C., responsible for the Nordic and Baltic region, and worked with the Latvian and Icelandic IMF programs. He has also been a long-time member of the EU Economic and Financial Committee (EFC) and participated in WP3 in OECD, discussing economic policy with G7.


Mark Summerfield, Managing Director, The Co-operative Insurance (UK)

Lindsay Sinclair, Group Chief Executive, NFU Mutual (UK)

Lindsay Sinclair was appointed Group Chief Executive of NFU Mutual Insurance Society Ltd on 1 November 2008. Prior to joining NFU Mutual he was CEO of ING Direct (UK) and over a period of 25 years Lindsay has also run retail businesses around the world for Barclays, ING and Standard Chartered (including bancassurance together with AIA across South East Asia). 

In addition to being an ICMIF Board Member, Lindsay sits on the General Insurance Committee of the Association of British Insurers (ABI).