CIU Program Committee 2019-2020

Lianne Heppenstrijdt-Hamilton

CIU Program Director 
Lianne Heppenstrijdt-Hamilton, FALU, FLMI, ACS
Director, U/W & Claims Risk Management
Sun Life Financial (Toronto)

Lianne has over 25 years experience in the Life and Health insurance industry, in both the US and Canadian markets and both the retail and wholesale channels. Over the years, she has been involved in process and guideline review and implementation, product development, people management and advisor training. She joined Sun Life in 2002 and made a move from the Canadian Division to the Corporate Division in 2014 where she is the Director of Underwriting and Claims Risk Management for the global enterprise encompassing North America and Asia. In this role, she is responsible for Sun Life's Global Risk Management Framework for Underwriting, involved in the Underwriting Manual review and update, referrals for the global underwriting teams and as a subject matter expert for our business partners. She is passionate about education and really looking forward to her new role on the CIU Program Committee.


Erica Hind

CIU Assistant Program Director 
Erica Hind, ALMI, AALU
Senior Underwriter
Hannover Re (Ireland) DAC Canadian Life Branch

Erica began her Underwriting career in 2010, holding positions at Sun Life Financial and Equitable Life of Canada, before joining Hannover Re in 2018. Over her career, she has underwritten Life and Critical Illness insurance, large case, piloted an Elite Broker Program and served as a Subject Matter Expert on Underwriting-related projects. Erica resides in Waterloo, Ontario with her husband and two sons, and is an avid concert goer and hockey fan. She is very passionate about education, and is consistently continuing her own education through both industry-related and University level courses. Erica is excited to continue to support the CIU Program Committee for years to come.

Marie-Claude Alarie

Program Committee Member
Marie-Claude Alarie, RN
Assistant Vice-President, Life & Health Products
Swiss Re

Born in Trois-Rivières, QC, Marie-Claude earned her nursing diploma in 1994, and practiced both in the emergency room and as a research nurse. A career change to life insurance saw her become an underwriter at Industrial Alliance from 2002 to 2006. After having spent time doing paramedical exams, she subsequently worked as a claim specialist for the following 2 years. Marie-Claude returned to underwriting in 2008 with Manulife, and later joining SSQ, so as to have the opportunity to work remotely from Québec City. She has been in her current position at Swiss Re since April 2016.
Besides underwriting, she has been a passionate musician since childhood; she plays the flute, sings and has even tried the tuba. She is also a proud skate and hockey mom who enjoys 2 arenas in lieu of a cottage! In addition to her RN designation, Marie-Claude holds a diploma from a college for radio and TV presenters. She is looking forward to working with the Program Committee on developing educational program for the CIU.

Karen McLeod, FALU, FLMI, ACS
Senior Underwriting & Learning Specialist

With a formal background in nursing, Karen left the health care industry and started her underwriting career in 2008 as an Underwriter with Manulife Financial. During her time there, Karen quickly gained valuable knowledge and a solid foundation of Life and Disability underwriting.  Additionally, Karen had the opportunity to mentor junior underwriters, before moving to Sun Life Financial in 2012 as a Senior Underwriter.  During her time at Sun Life Financial, Karen quickly became proficient in Critical Illness underwriting, and gained valuable exposure and experience with completing rescissions. She moved to LOGiQ3 in March 2016. Karen quickly became an expert in Life Valuations, Structured Settlements, Life, CI and DI underwriting, E Learning grading, as well as being involved in auditing and consulting projects. In 2018, she was promoted to a more formal coaching role. In her current role, Karen is still involved in production underwriting but is also responsible for training, mentoring, auditing and coaching of new and existing underwriters, both internally and externally. Her positive attitude, warm demeanor and passion for teaching and continuing education is a great fit with the Program Committee. Karen is looking forward to providing exciting educational opportunities for our members.

Nicole Morrall

Nicole Morrall, FALU, FLMI, ACS
Associate Underwriting Consultant, Individual Insurance

Nicole has more than 28 years of insurance experience, starting off her insurance career in 1990 at Crown Life in the policy change department, and in 1995 began underwriting with UNUM Canada.  Nicole is currently an Associate Underwriting Consultant at Manulife underwriting disability, life and critical illness insurance.   Current additional responsibilities include claims insurance review and cosigning.   As a witness and an active participant in the technological changes within the insurance industry, the process and procedures of insurance modernization are of great interest to her.  Personal community volunteering experience includes 7 years as a Girl Guide Leader.

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