Ice precipitations in the summer? It’s a much more common natural phenomenon than you would think, particularly in Alberta.

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AXA XL appoints Judy Faber as Vice President, Business Operations & Customer Management in Canada

AXA XL today announced Judy Faber will join as Vice President, Business Operations and Customer Management in Canada effective June 16, 2020. In this dual role, Ms. Faber will oversee the Canadian insurance operations of AXA XL as well as strengthen our customer management strategy in Canada. Ms. Faber will join AXA XL’s Canadian leadership team, reporting directly to Urs Uhlmann, CEO & Country Manager for AXA XL, Canada.

Ms. Faber’s responsibilities include establishing and executing an operations strategy for the business units in Canada while ensuring alignment with the broader priorities of AXA XL.  She is responsible for streamlining underwriting and operations to ensure the team provides industry-leading service to our clients and brokers. In this role, Ms. Faber will work with and support the distribution function in Canada by effectively leading the execution of our customer management strategy and elevating AXA XL’s market reputation in the targeted segments.

“Judy’s knowledge of the Canadian large risk markets coupled with her background in claims, underwriting and customer management in the Risk Management space will further strengthen the ability for AXA XL, Canada to deliver quality service to our customers and improve operational efficiencies,” noted Mr. Uhlmann.

Ms. Faber joins from Zurich Canada where she spent several years in customer and client management, most recently serving as Head of Customer Management. Prior to Zurich, Ms. Faber spent nearly 20 years in loss adjustment and underwriting. Ms. Faber is a member of the Insurance Institute of Canada, Ontario Independent Adjusters Association (OIAA), Toastmasters of Toronto and the Insurance Bureau of Canada. She is the Chair for speaker series at the Women’s Innovative Network. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and is a Chartered Insurance Professional.


AXA XL1, the property & casualty and specialty risk division of AXA, provides insurance and risk management products and services for mid-sized companies through to large multinationals, and reinsurance solutions to insurance companies globally. We partner with those who move the world forward. To learn more, visit


AXA XL1 Insurance offers property, casualty, professional, financial lines and specialty insurance solutions to mid-sized companies through to large multinationals globally. We partner with those who move the world forward. To learn more, visit

1AXA XL is a division of AXA Group providing products and services through three business groups: AXA XL Insurance, AXA XL Reinsurance, and AXA XL Risk Consulting.


Canadian man diagnosed with brain tumour while on vacation in Thailand dies

Sean Davidson, CTV News Toronto

A Canadian man who was diagnosed with a brain tumour in Thailand last winter and fought with his insurance company to get home for surgery has died.

Kitchener, Ont. resident Alex Witmer and his wife Jennifer Witmer, who had been living in New Brunswick, quit their jobs earlier last year and went on a trip to Thailand before planning to relocate to Toronto.

The couple was about a month into their trip when the 30-year-old began suffering from a severe migraine. They went to the hospital in Koh Samui and after doctors completed scans they were given the devastating news that he had a tumour deep inside his brain.

Their insurance company, Allianz Global Assistance, initially rejected the $265,000 air ambulance flight home because Alex reported a headache during an emergency room visit in Moncton a month before their trip. Days later, the insurance company reversed the decision and he eventually flew home to Canada and underwent surgery in Ottawa.

The tumours were originally thought to be benign but after a second pathology report doctors revealed his tumour was in fact cancerous.

According to Jennifer, he was diagnosed with epithelioid glioblastoma, a rare and aggressive form of brain cancer.

She announced on Instagram that he died on Sunday.


Economical Insurance will donate $200,000 to Canadian charities driving change in their community

Employee and broker-driven campaign, Choose Your Charity, supports communities in need

Press Release:

Economical Insurance is proud to announce that it will be granting donations to 13 community-based organizations in areas neighbouring Economical offices across the country, through an employee and broker-driven Choose Your Charity.

Normal life – along with significant portions of the Canadian economy – has been significantly disrupted due to the coronavirus pandemic and a shifting societal landscape. For many Canadians, the services provided by the not-for-profit sector and community-driven organizations have become more essential than ever. The impact of COVID-19 requires additional funds to assist with health care and mental health supports. The Choose Your Charity program may also provide assistance for organizations that are furthering anti-racism causes or unique needs that have resulted from the hardships of 2020.

“Our Choose Your Charity campaign is focused on supporting registered charities whose needs have increased or been neglected, and whose mandates have a positive community impact,” said David Bradfield, Vice-President, Marketing and Communication at Economical Insurance. “This campaign empowers our employees and our broker partners to nominate and advocate for the needs they believe are the most significant in their community.”

Employees and broker partners of Economical will be able to nominate and vote for charitable organizations from coast-to-coast between now and late June to determine which final charities will receive a combined donation of $200,000.

In response to the present and growing needs of surrounding communities, Economical Insurance has already taken action to pivot its corporate social responsibility (CSR) planning for 2020. Over the last few months, Economical has:

“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it’s crucial to acknowledge that the world is changing in other ways. Thousands of protesters have recently taken to the streets – and to social media – in a show of solidarity with the anti-black racism movement,” said Bradfield. “Choose Your Charity is intended to provide diverse support to assist any organization in need.”

The nomination period of Choose Your Charity is now open for the employees and broker-partners of Economical. As a proud supporter of Canadian charities and causes that directly protect the safety and security, youth and education, and health and wellness of Canadians — Economical remains focused on driving true change for Canadians through community funding.

Economical will announce the selected charities in the weeks to come.

About Economical Insurance
Economical Mutual Insurance Company (“Economical” or “Economical Insurance”, which includes its subsidiaries where the context so requires) is a leading property and casualty insurer in Canada, with approximately $2.6 billion in annualized gross written premiums, based on the quarter ending March 31, 2020, and over $5.8 billion in assets as at March 31, 2020. Economical is a Canadian-owned and operated company that services the insurance needs of more than one million customers.

SOURCE Economical Insurance

Emergency chief Tom Sampson said some of the hail was as big as tennis balls

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Fairfax chairman Prem Watsa spends nearly US$150 million to buy more shares

TORONTO _ The chairman and CEO of Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. has spent nearly US$150 million to purchase thousands of additional company shares.

The Toronto-based company says Prem Watsa bought 482,600 subordinate voting shares over the last few days in the market.

Watsa says in a news release that he told shareholders at the company’s recent annual meeting and earnings call that the company’s shares are “ridiculously cheap.”

In 35 years since Fairfax began, Watsa says he’s never seen Fairfax shares sell at a bigger discount to their intrinsic value.

He says he backed up his words by purchasing the shares “as I believe that this will be an excellent long-term investment.”

Fairfax is a holding company which, through its subsidiaries, is engaged in property and casualty insurance and reinsurance and the associated investment management.



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