IASA, one of the insurance industry's largest trade associations, formally announced today that Beth Mercier of Travelers Companies has been elected to serve as president of the association for the 2013-'14 fiscal year.

"I'm honored to be the next president of IASA," said Beth Mercier, VP, personal lines, for Travelers. "My volunteer experiences at IASA have allowed me to gain insights around industry issues and incorporate them back into the work I do at Travelers, and I have drawn on my strategic planning experience at work to assist in the enhancement of the IASA strategic plan. The integration of experiences has contributed to my career accomplishments and positioned me to take on this important role."

Mercier, who started her career working as a staff auditor for Shawmut Bank in Hartford, Conn., has since held leadership positions with Aetna, Cigna, and SS&C before joining Travelers. Her years at Travelers and volunteer experience with IASA have led Mercier to gain experience in project management, enterprise program management, process improvement, portfolio management, strategy, execution and project delivery.

Mercier was also a 2012 Women in Insurance Leadership Award winner.

For the coming year, IASA says there are already initiatives underway to expand the association's delivery of education through web seminars, and to deliver the popular statutory accounting via an app with more interactive capabilities.

In addition to the election of Mercier as IASA president, the association's members nominated Forrest G. Mills Jr. of Guaranty Income Life Insurance as president-elect; Celeska Fredianelli of QBE as CFO; and Rex Bagwell of Salient Commercial Solutions, Sonia Cliffel of First American Equipment Finance, Tom Ewbank of The Ewbank Group P.C., Ed Kruger of Indiana Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, Brian Ollech of The Warranty Group, and Linda Paolucci of TIAA-CREF, as board members at-large.

Also, Mary Ellen Freyermuth of Catholic Mutual Insurance, and 2006 Women in Insurance Leadership Winner, was nominated as IASA Chief Information Officer.

As a past president for IASA and according to the association's bylaws, Louise Ziemann, now retired from State Farm, automatically becomes Board Chair for the upcoming fiscal year.

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