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Our Team

We bring the following Core Virtues to our relationships and associated insurance transactions: Wisdom, Responsibility, Preservation, Diligence, Humility, Patience & Philanthropy.


 

Joseph A. Valenza,
President

Joe is a Commercial Insurance Underwriting and Risk Management Executive with almost 30 years of experience. He has created, managed and led business units, to stability through his thoughtful and calculated decision-making. With his successful management roles at Deloitte Consulting, Kemper, AIG and most recently, Hudson Insurance Group, Joe brings a strategic focus to Virtue’s insurance operation by concentrating on Virtue’s three main objectives: Underwriting Excellence, Operational Excellence, and Streamlined Distribution. Joe’s long history as an industry veteran has established his intent to carry his client-minded philosophies to help grow underwriting operations with stability for all of his business partners.  Joe holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, Executive Management from Fairleigh Dickinson University and Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Finance from Rider University, NJ. Joe also holds three professional designations, CPCU, ARM, and AIM. Joe has strong industry ties to the WSIA, associated Automation Committees and the WSIA Emerging Issues Committee and has previously been endorsed by several industry associations. Joe has also been published several times in key industry trade publications.

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Desiree Hernandez-Molina,
Director of Operations

Desiree is a graduate of Manhattanville College with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Spanish. Desiree most recent work experience was at New York Life Insurance Company where she served as licensed Life and Health Insurance Agent in the Latino Market. In her current role, Desiree will remain a focused member of our renewal underwriting team.  She will also manage our processes so that our underwriting teams have the tools and functionalities to efficiently process our transactions from account clearance to invoice delivery.

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Tracey Signore,
Renewal Underwriter

Tracey brings professional demeanor, a track record of reliability, strong organizational, administrative, and top notch customer service skills.   Tracey’s most recent work experience was at Avon where she supported the Clinical Testing Center and prior to that, she was employed by KPMG and CA, Inc. in an Executive Management support role. Tracey is organized, efficient and precise as she provides administrative support to the underwriting team and to our distribution partners, that helps us serve our mutual clients with the speed and accuracy required. She is also our clearance quarterback and will be following up on subjectivities needed for policy issuance and timely delivery of documents.  Tracey is also starting to work with our renewal team to process your valuable renewal business.

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Geoffrey Bernardo,
Director of Environmental Programs

Geoff is a CPCU designee and a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University where he studied Finance with a focus in Risk and Insurance. Geoff most recently worked with James River Insurance as an Underwriter in their Environmental Division, where he worked closely with wholesale brokers throughout the western United States to place complex environmental accounts. Geoff will serve on our New Business team and will be key to helping our Agents win new business with creative yet responsible insurance solutions.

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Joshua Rubin,
General Liability Underwriting and Distribution Director

Joshua is a CPCU designee, a Certified Construction Risk and Insurance Specialist and a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University where he studied Risk and Insurance and Finance. Josh has worked as an Underwriter of manufacturers and contractors for the past several years and will be focused on writing new business to build our Environmental and General Liability programs.  Josh will also be responsible for helping our Agents responsibly win new business by using his underwriting experience and his knowledge of general liability underwriting and the wholesale distribution network.

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Daniel R. Lavoie,
Chief Counsel / Director of Claims

Mr. Lavoie has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of risk management and insurance from sales and brokerage, to claims management, legal and compliance and is responsible all legal matters at Virtue Risk Partners including contracts, real estate, HR matters, corporate compliance, claims, policy wording and endorsements. Mr. Lavoie is also an expert in environmental law including regulatory compliance, Phase I, Phase II, and Remedial Action reports, due diligence and litigation, insurance coverage, and risk management.  In addition, his experience includes handling RCRA & CERCLA matters as well as vapor intrusion, mold, and other indoor air quality issues.  He has practiced law at a prominent international law firms including Steptoe & Johnson and Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, and has also held senior-level corporate positions at major insurance and financial services companies including General Counsel of Navigators Group, SVP and Environmental Practice Leader at Marsh USA, Inc., and Principal and Chief Compliance Officer at Integro Insurance Brokers. Daniel is licensed to practice law in NY, NJ, and MA, as well as various U.S. District Courts around the country.

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Janel Jones-Bond,
Renewal Underwriter

Janel is an accomplished and energetic licensed insurance professional with a solid history of achievement in the insurance industry. A motivated leader with strong organizational and prioritizing abilities.  Areas of expertise include networking, cross-selling and customer minded operational execution.  Janel has worked for Allstate, State Farm and other insurance sales, underwriting, office management and customer support roles.   Janel was promoted to a Renewal Underwriter at Virtue Risk in March of 2020.

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Ann Boman-Clark,
Casualty Marketing Specialist / Personal Umbrella Specialist

Ann has over 40 years of insurance experience with 24 years of them as a carrier underwriter.  Her expertise has been in a specialty “niche” Personal Umbrella program that is distributed nationwide through wholesalers/MGA’s only. Her philosophy has always been to remain focused on underwriting, provide only the highest level of service to her clients and to have a team that truly understands the products and client relationships. Ann has built incredible loyalty with the wholesalers/MGA’s who have supported her over the years.  For Virtue, Ann will be working closely with our Underwriting team strengthen current relationships and bring improperly serviced and controlled business to our group.  Ann will also build a new Personal Umbrella line of business for Virtue and for our next carrier partner in this segment.

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Bradley Carroll,
Underwriter

Bradley graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2019 with a degree in Business Finance, concentrating in Risk Management & Insurance.  He has extensive experience in communications, sales & service oriented industries. Brad served the renewal team before joining the new business team in 2020.  His primary focus today is underwriting new business accounts for the environmental program team.  In addition to underwriting commercial lines, Brad’s role involves providing competitive & responsible insurance solutions, brokering worker’s compensation coverage, marketing & managing wholesale broker relationships and utilizing data analytics.

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William Ragland,
Associate Underwriter

William is a recent graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University where he studied Finance with a concentration of Risk Management and Insurance.  William started with Virtue Risk as an intern before being hired into a full time position in May 2021.  William’s studies and interning experience have prepared him well for the insurance industry, where his responsibilities now include administering the claims intake process, data mining to support our underwriting and claims functions, and will soon include pre-underwriting renewals and new business.

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Katrina Valenza,
Human Resources Coordinator

Katrina is a graduate of Sacred Heart University’s Jack Welch College of Business & Technology where she studied Business Management with a concentration in Human Resources Management.  Her studies and her work experiences as a legal and insurance Administrative Assistant have positioned her well to build and evolve the Virtue Risk Human Resources Department and bring our team even more tools to facilitate their personal and professional growth and development.

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Ledya Yigzaw,
Associate New Business Underwriter

Ledya is a graduate of VCU.  She studied Business Management and Administration. Upon graduation, she worked as an Insurance Agent assisting military members and their families with Personal Insurance.  She has also worked as a Commercial Account Manager Associate handling multiple Middle Market/Large accounts with coverages including Environmental, Cyber, and Professional Liability. Ledya holds licenses in Personal and Property & Casualty.  She will assist the Virtue Renewal Team to ensure client satisfaction and provide superior service. Ledya is dedicated and driven and is also currently on track to become a CPCU designee.

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Jaden Woodley,
Underwriting Assistant

Jaden is a recent graduate of Pace University where he studied Finance and Economics. Jaden started with Virtue Risk as an intern before being hired into a full-time position in June 2023. His studies and intern experience have prepared him well for the insurance industry, where his responsibilities now include submission clearance, subjectivity analysis, policy issuance and the timely delivery of other account documents. Jaden is poised nicely to continue to grow to be a very big part of Virtue Risk Partners.

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Gabriela Sarlija,
Underwriting Assistant

Gabriela is an Underwriting Assistant working with our General Liability Casualty (PLEDGE) Program.  Gabriela is a recent graduate of St. John’s University where she studied Risk Management and Insurance. She is currently working toward her MBA in Enterprise Risk Management also from St. John’s. Gabriela started with Virtue Risk in March of 2023 as an intern before being hired into a full time position in December 2023. Her responsibilities now include policy issuance and other underwriting focused administrative responsibilities.

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Ana Feliz,
Renewal Underwriter

Ana is a Renewal Underwriter working with our General Liability Casualty (PLEDGE) Program.  Ana has 10 years of experience in underwriting property and casualty lines of business.   Combined with a strong prior background in retail management and in wholesale insurance distribution, Ana brings underwriting expertise and quick response time and will serve our Agents with the responsible service they deserve.

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Fabio Sgarro,
New Business Underwriter

Fabio is a New Business Underwriter working in our General Liability Casualty (PLEDGE) Program.  Fabio was with Berkshire Hathaway Direct Insurance Company before joining Virtue Risk Partners. Fabio has worked as underwriter for various industries, including hospitality, for-hire transportation, and contractors and specialty trades and as experience underwriting package general liability policies. Fabio graduated from Dickinson College with a degree in Environmental Studies and will be focusing on underwriting profitable new business opportunities.

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Garrette Woody,
Renewal Underwriter

Garrette is a Renewal Underwriter working with our Environmental Liability Casualty Program.  Garrette is an AINS designee and has over 9 years of experience in Commercial P&C underwriting. Prior to joining Virtue, Garrette spent 5 years at Liberty Mutual – Equine and Livestock division. Her extensive experience as well vast knowledge of the underwriting process makes her a great fit for our Renewal team. Garrette prides herself on the level of care she provides her clients and is eager to bestow that level of care to Virtue and to our partners.

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Brandon Wright,
Underwriting Assistant

Brandon is an Underwriting Assistant working in our Environmental Liability Casualty Program.  Brandon is a CPCU designee and a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University where he studied Business Administration with a concentration in Risk Management & Insurance.  Brandon most recently worked with Markel Insurance.  Brandon will serve in assistance to our New Business team, handling the behind-the-scenes of the policy issuance process, and working to optimize our internal processes to provide service most efficiently and effectively to our wholesalers.

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