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Lill and Newell top the 2020 D&O Rankings


  • Hiscox’s Gary Lill won the underwriting ranking for the third year in a row.

  • Marsh JLT Specialty’s Chris Newell took first place on the broker ranking, up from sixth in 2019.

  • Results on the underwriting side were more stable year on year compared to the broker league table.

Gary Lill of Hiscox has taken first place in Insurance Insider’s annual survey of London market D&O talent for the third consecutive year, while Marsh JLT Specialty’s Chris Newell rose to the top of the broker league table.

The 2020 edition of the D&O Rankings have somewhat indicated a shift in underwriter-broker preferences as, compared to previous editions of the survey, the results have produced some big movers on both underwriting and broking sides.


Lill, who at the time of the survey was Hiscox’s D&O line underwriter, finished the Rankings with an overall score of 47 – more than double his score of 22 in 2019. In terms of overall nominations, he garnered 19 votes from brokers, up from 11 in the prior year.

He is now set to join Lloyd’s carrier ERS to start building a professional lines book.


Scores are calculated using a Borda count methodology whereby three points are awarded to a respondent’s top choice, two to their second choice and one to their third.

Lill is a longstanding D&O underwriter and has been underwriting at Hiscox since 2014. Before that he was at Allied World Assurance Company for over 10 years.

Indeed, it was the more experienced brokers – those with more than 20 years’ experience in the market – that were more likely to vote for Lill.

While Lill’s nominations were given by brokers with varying levels of experience, a higher proportion – just over 30% – were from brokers with over 20 years’ experience.

When voting for Lill, one broker described him as having “great knowledge, very personable with a commercial mind and a very safe pair of hands”.

Meanwhile, Jeremy Isaacs of Sompo International was the runner-up on the underwriting side with an overall score of 32, lagging Lill by 15 points.

Isaacs, who is a consistently top performer in the D&O rankings, moved up to second in the 2020 Rankings after finishing third in 2019 and 2018.

Coming third this year was Starr Insurance Companies’ Paul Perry who beat fourth-placed Ed Whitworth of Hiscox by just one point.

Elsewhere, all three underwriters who were voted to joint-fifth position were also notable risers: Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance’s Chris Warrior came fifth after not being ranked in the 2019 survey, and Ken-Frode Svean of Allied World rose to joint fifth from 36th in 2019.

Beazley’s Mike Parry also took fifth place after not being ranked as an underwriter in previous editions of the survey. Indeed, Parry – formerly of Marsh JLT Specialty – has only been an underwriter for a year; he had been a broker since 2005 and was even voted as the top D&O broker in the inaugural 2018 D&O Rankings survey.


As for the broker ranking, Marsh JLT Specialty’s Chris Newell came top for the first time, having finished sixth in 2019 and 21st in 2018.

Like Lill, Newell is a longstanding market professional, having been at Marsh JLT Specialty for the last 14 years. Prior to that he was at Willis Towers Watson for four years.

Newell took top spot in 2020 with 12 nominations from underwriters, leading to an overall score of 27. When voting for Newell, one underwriter noted that “he is a genuine expert in his field”.


Howden’s Jason Rose took second with an overall score of 25, just two points behind Newell, even though both professionals received the same number of nominations. This is because although the two brokers received the same number of top-choice nominations (which carries the most weight when calculating overall scores), Newell received more second-place nominations than Rose did, allowing Newell to finish slightly ahead.

Rose, who holds a divisional director title at Howden, has been a consistent top-ranked broker since the inaugural D&O Rankings survey in 2018 when he came second, followed by first in 2019.

Elsewhere, Shaunna Batabyal of Marsh JLT Specialty rose from 13th last year to third in 2020. Batabyal – vice president and head of international management liability – worked at Aon for just over four years before joining Marsh in 2017.

To download the report containing headline results of the survey, or for details on how to get access to the full results, click here.

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