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RLI’s board confirms Kliethermes as next CEO, names Klobnak COO

RLI logo with Craig Kliethermes .jpg

RLI has confirmed the appointment of Craig Kliethermes as president and CEO, and has named Jennifer Klobnak its COO, effective January 1, 2022.

The moves will coincide with the planned retirement of RLI’s current chairman and CEO, Jonathan Michael, at end of this year.

Following his retirement in December, Michael will continue to serve as chairman of the RLI board of directors, a position he has held since 2011.

Kliethermes has been RLI’s president and COO since 2016. Previously, the executive served as a senior vice president for risk services since 2013. He joined the firm in 2006.

Prior to RLI, Kliethermes held various actuarial and leadership stints at Lockton, GE Insurance/Employers Reinsurance and John Deere Insurance Company.

Klobnak had served as a senior vice president for operations since 2016. She was previously senior vice president for risk services since 2014. The executive joined the firm in 2000, and prior to that, she served in an audit role with PwC.

Commenting on the appointments, Michael said: “Both Craig and Jen have the leadership track record and breadth of business experience necessary to guide our organization forward, including a strong customer orientation, commitment to our people and core values, and focus on delivering value to shareholders.

“This planned transition demonstrates the depth of our leadership team and long-term sustainability of our organization. I’m confident that RLI is well-positioned for continued success.”

Kliethermes said: “I’m grateful for the opportunity to lead the continued growth of our extraordinary company. RLI has talented and passionate employee owners at its core. I look forward to working with them to build on the solid foundation and legacy that Jon and RLI Founder Jerry Stephens established.”

Klobnak added: “I look forward to continuing to work with the entire RLI team to enhance these relationships and advance our mission to protect customers from life’s uncertainties through industry-leading specialty risk management solutions, unmatched expertise and superior service.”

RLI named Kliethermes as heir to its CEO seat in November 2020, when it revealed its succession plan.

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