Magazine article Risk Management

Chicago Chapter a Valued Commodity for over 40 Years

Magazine article Risk Management

Chicago Chapter a Valued Commodity for over 40 Years

Article excerpt

Before RIMS became RIMS and risk management as we know it became risk management, there was a group called the Mid-West Insurance Buyers Association. Incorporated in Illinois in 1945, this group, along with a handful of others like it, would come to be among the founding cornerstones of the National Association of Insurance Buyers (NIBA), the first national incarnation of what would later become RIMS. In 1952, the Mid-West Insurance Buyers Association would formally join NIBA as its seventh chapter--eventually changing its name to the Chicago Chapter.

At present, the chapter stands at approximately 150 member organizations strong--one of the largest in the Society. But like many chapters across the United States and Canada, the Chicago Chapter understands it must remain vigilant about membership retention and growth. To respond in part to this challenge, the chapter instituted a "Year With RIMS" program. Under this program, risk managers of non-RIMS-member companies can attend the chapter's monthly meetings on a one-year trial basis, and pay only a small surcharge to cover related mailing and administrative expenses. As a result, several of those trial attendees have become full members, reports Judy Silverman (Premark International Inc.), the current president of the Chicago Chapter. As far as retaining those organizations that are already members goes, "risk managers in transition" --individuals who are former RIMS deputy members, particularly those who are now unemployed--are welcomed to attend regular chapter meetings at the member price as a guest of any current active Chicago Chapter member.

For a number of years, the chapter has been cultivating relationships with other organizations and working with other RIMS chapters, to expand each other's knowledge. For instance, this past November marked the latest manifestation of the RIMS Midwest Regional Workshop, cosponsored by the Chicago, Northeast Illinois and Wisconsin RIMS chapters. Originally a one-day event, it is now a two-day Risk Management and Employee Benefits Conference and Exhibition, called REBEX for short.

Additionally, the Chicago Chapter occasionally holds separate joint meetings with the Northeast Illinois RIMS Chapter, as well as with both the local Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters and American Society of Safety Engineers chapters. Ms. Silverman notes that the chapter is also looking to work with other groups and associations and is currently reaching out to Indiana State University and Illinois Wesleyan to encourage students to attend chapter meetings. …

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