Celebrating Women in Risk Management | International Women’s Day 2024

This International Women’s Day, we shine a light on three outstanding women working in the field of risk management. The passion, innovation, and drive of these inspiring ladies has helped them make impactful contributions to both their organizations and the industry as a whole. Please read on and enjoy as we celebrate Kelly Flores, Collin Klein, and Amanda Trueman.

Kelly Flores
Deputy Director of Underwriting Services, Risk Management Services
Texas Association of Counties

How did your career in risk management / risk pooling get started?

I started in the insurance industry in 2002, beginning my journey as a Claims Loss Reporting Representative at Progressive Auto Insurance. Like countless others, I did not initially consider a career in insurance. After graduating with a Bachelor of Business Administration, specializing in Marketing, I encountered difficulty securing a job due to lack of experience. This prompted me to draw upon my background in insurance to find employment opportunities. That is how I found the Texas Association of Counties and applied for the Member Services Representative position back in 2007.

What do you like best about working in risk pooling?

Our Members and the relationships we build with them are founded on care and trust when it comes to providing them with their coverage needs. Our purpose is to serve our members.

What resources and/or people have significantly impacted your career?

I am dedicated to lifelong learning and grateful the organization I am part of fosters our aspirations for professional growth.  I admire authors such as Brene Brown, James Clear, and Brianna Wiest. I enjoy listening to “The Mel Robbins Show” and “The Heal Squad,” both offering insightful discussions on personal development, overcoming challenges, and overall well-being. My dad and grandpa have been influential figures in my career journey from the start. Their guidance has always emphasized the importance of leadership and treating others with the same respect I desire to receive.

What advice do you have for young women aspiring to work in risk management / risk pooling?

Seek out mentors who can provide valuable guidance and support as you develop your career in risk management or risk pooling. Continuously expand your knowledge base and stay current on emerging trends and industry advancements that may influence the way we do business.

Collin Klein
North Carolina Association of County Commissioners, County Risk Group (NCACC CRG)

How did your career in risk pooling get started?

I attended East Carolina University, where I received my bachelor’s degree in finance with a concentration in Risk Management & Insurance (RMI). While in the RMI program, I became a member of the professional fraternity, Gamma Iota Sigma. As a part of this group, I was able to attend many conferences and got involved in ways I wouldn’t have known how without it.

One of the conferences I attended in my junior year was the NCPRIMA (the NC Chapter of the Public Risk Management Association) conference. I chose to attend sessions that would help me understand what PRIMA was all about; the crazy part is, one of the sessions was “Introductions to Risk Management.” I didn’t think anything of the session besides learning what this conference was about and what it meant to the employers and employees in attendance.

Fast forward a year and a half, I’m sitting in my new office’s conference room with my new boss, going through a PowerPoint called “Introduction to Risk Management” and it was all too familiar. While I wanted to stop him at the very first slide, I let him continue a little more, and finally stopped him to tell him about this whole bit. Both of us got a laugh out of it, and we still talk about it to this day, eight — almost nine — years later. I’m so happy to have been in that session and to have things work out the way they did.

What do you like best about working in risk pooling? 

I really enjoy all of the people who I get to work with and the job that I get to do. I always hoped for a career where I could help people and with this job, and with the Pools (CRG), I found that.

Initially going into the insurance industry, I recognized that everyone has insurance in one way or another but most don’t understand why or what they have/are paying for. Being a part of CRG has provided me with the knowledge of insurance and why we have it along with the benefits of pooling, if/when available.

We are a member-based organization, and what we do and all that we provide is for our membership — for their benefit to help them and to help provide the tools/resources they need to allow them to do what they do, for our NC Counties. I love that and my job.

What resources and/or people have significantly impacted your career? 

Being a part of the ECU RMI program had an enormous impact on my career. However, I feel even more strongly, that attending the NCPRIMA conference on an annual basis, continues to impact my career and provide insight to what public entities are faced with each year. There’s always something new!

What advice do you have for young women aspiring to work in risk management / risk pooling?

It’s such a unique field and opportunity to have, working in the pooling world. I would urge you to get in there and learn more about specific organizations! I’ve had such a rewarding experience with my job, and I know there are so many more years of this to come.

Amanda Trueman
Director of Appraisal Services – West

How did your career in risk management get started?

I started my professional journey at Centurisk as an appraiser/valuation associate, conducting on-site appraisals in multiple states. What originally attracted me to this role was the ability to travel to all different parts of the country and an opportunity to use my economics degree.

What do you like best about working in risk management?

I really enjoy working collaboratively with both my team and clients to deliver valuation projects of exceptional quality. Together, we navigate the complexities of projects and their intricate details to help ensure accurate valuations. 

I also really love that our client’s organizations are focused on how to best serve their members which are often the states/counties/etc. we live in, the schools we attend, the organizations that maintain our water supply, and more. It’s such a positive environment to work with clients who are doing the best they can to help their members every day.

What resources and/or people have significantly impacted your career?

Sandra Hou has been a pivotal force in shaping the trajectory of my career.  Her unwavering commitment to excellence has inspired me to strive for greater heights in my field.  While under her management, I found myself driven to pursue my ASA, which has significantly enhanced my skills and contributions in the workplace. Sandra’s work ethic serves as a constant source of motivation and witnessing her success in her position has been instrumental in pushing me to continuously evolve in my career. I am grateful for the impact Sandra has had on my professional development. 

The American Society of Appraisers has also significantly influenced my professional journey. Engaging with experts in the field through this association has enhanced my comprehension of various facets of risk management.

What advice do you have for young women aspiring to work in risk management / risk pooling?

Confidence in your abilities is the catalyst for success. Always bring your innovative ideas to the table, embody the spirit of a lifelong learner, and let your unwavering work ethic shine. Infuse every interaction with positive energy that not only inspires and elevates those around you but also fuels your own continuous growth.

Big thank you to Kelly, Collin, and Amanda for sharing their stories/advice with us and for everything they do to advance the fields of risk management and risk pooling!

You can connect with or follow them on LinkedIn here:
Kelly Flores: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kelly-flores-cisr-a4782b110/
Collin Klein: https://www.linkedin.com/in/collinmklein/
Amanda Trueman: https://www.linkedin.com/in/amanda-trueman-67aa21b5/

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