BELLEVUE, Wash. — As part of its business strategy to expand life insurance products, distribution and operations, Symetra Life Insurance Company has hired 20 new employees and opened an office in Waltham, Mass., west of Boston.
The new hires represent a variety of life insurance disciplines, including actuarial, new business operations, product management and underwriting. Most are former employees of Sun Life Financial, which exited the U.S. life insurance market in late 2011. These 20 experienced life insurance professionals join Symetra’s expanding national Life Sales team to grow the company’s life business.
Here are five senior life insurance professionals who recently joined Symetra and are based in the Boston area:
Michael Polonsky is assistant vice president and senior actuary, Life Product. In this position, he will play a key role in the idea creation, development and launch of new individual life products. Polonsky most recently served as director, Individual Pricing and Product Development at Sun Life. He moved up the actuarial ranks at John Hancock Financial Services, where he worked for nearly 15 years. He is a graduate of Brown University, a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and Member of the American Academy of Actuaries.
Philip Calderone is assistant vice president, Individual Life Underwriting. In his new role, he will lead the life underwriting group in Boston and will work closely with Symetra’s Life Sales team to help manage and enhance relationships with distributors. Calderone spent most of his 30-year insurance career at Sun Life in underwriting leadership positions. A graduate of the Johns Hopkins University, he is a Fellow of the Academy of Life Underwriting and a Fellow of the Life Management Institute.
Gregory Faux is assistant vice president, Life Product Development. In this position, he will participate in the development of Symetra’s life product strategy and identification of new life product development opportunities to best meet distributor and customer interests and needs. He most recently served as associate vice president, Product Management at Sun Life, with earlier career stops at John Hancock Financial Services and Gentry Partners. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University and holds Series 6, 7, 24 and 63 licenses.
Douglas Bowden is director, Advanced Markets, responsible for consulting on complex cases and product designs with distribution partners and Symetra’s Life Sales team. As Advanced Markets director at Sun Life, Bowden developed and implemented point-of-sale tools to increase market share, and he managed the life illustration system and advanced sales platforms. He is a graduate of the University of Vermont and a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC). Bowden also is a member of the Society of Financial Services Professionals and Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU).
Carrie Benoit is director, New Business in Symetra’s Life Division. In this role, she will manage and optimize new business processes and will work closely with distributors in on-boarding customers to Symetra. At Sun Life, Benoit led new business process and technology improvements, which resulted in higher customer satisfaction ratings in industry surveys. She previously served in operations and project management roles at Hanover Insurance Group. Benoit earned a bachelor of science degree at Quinnipac University and an MBA at Nichols College in Dudley, Mass. She holds Series 6 and 26 licenses and FLMI, AFSI and ACS designations from the Life Officers Management Association (LOMA).
“These five outstanding leaders and their talented Boston-area colleagues bring broad industry experience and proven technical skills to Symetra. They will partner with our Life team in Bellevue, Wash., to elevate our game as we diversify our life product portfolio and broaden our distribution network,” said Jon Curley, executive vice president of Symetra’s Life Division. “This investment in people and new facilities demonstrates Symetra’s clear commitment to grow our life insurance business.”
The new Symetra office is located at the Stony Brook Office Park, 130 Turner Street in Waltham, Mass.
Symetra Life Insurance Company is a subsidiary of Symetra Financial Corporation (NYSE: SYA), a diversified financial services company based in Bellevue, Wash. In business since 1957, Symetra provides employee benefits, annuities and life insurance through a national network of benefit consultants, financial institutions, and independent agents and advisors. For more information, visit www.symetra.com.