Our thanks to all of you who attended our annual Policyholders’ Conference in San Diego. Based on the evaluations you submitted, it was one of the most successful conferences we’ve ever hosted, with 93% of members and brokers rating the conference as either “outstanding” or “exceeds expectations.” More than 1,200 members, brokers and guests attended the event this year, and we were pleased that the number of members attending the conference increased for the second year in a row, which was particularly gratifying given the ongoing consolidation of companies within the industry and the restrictions on travel budgets.
The theme of this year’s conference – real group effort – reflected the progress we’ve made together in the past year. Thanks to member and broker support of the underwriting measures we’ve taken to restore balance to our underwriting efforts, our excess liability book of business is finally getting in balance after many years. This progress was duly noted by AM Best when they recently reinstated our A (Excellent) rating with a stable outlook. In addition, we’re pleased to report that our balanced underwriting efforts, moderate losses and a favorable investment environment in the first six months of the year helped policyholder surplus grow by $59 million to $1.216 billion, a new high for the mutual.
Many of the general session and breakout session presentations made at the conference are posted on our website, including Bob Hartwig's report on economic and insurance market conditions and the highly rated presentations on solar storms, cyber risk, wildfires, current D&O issues, and the terrorism threat to physical assets.