Risk and Insurance Management Society, Inc.
Los Angeles Chapter


 The Newsletter for Risk and Insurance Management Professionals

L.A. RIMS News May 2004


 L.A. RIMS Links

 L.A. RIMS Website
 Board Officers 

 Executive Referrals
Membership Info
List of Members

 Related Links

Calendar of Events

May 10, 2004
L.A. RIMS Annual
Charity Golf Tournament
Brookside Golf Course
Pasadena, CA

June 16th
L.A. RIMS Luncheon

July 21st
L.A. RIMS Luncheon

August 18th
L.A. RIMS Luncheon

September 15th
L.A. RIMS Luncheon

Register for the L.A. RIMS Golf

Welcome New Members
Dona Blazis
Port of Long Beach

Etawanda Breland
Safeway, Inc.

Constance Callan
CRC Insurance

Peggy Cutts
Helpmates Staffing Services

John Funk
Manhattan Data

Audrey Harrison

Dennis Harris
Infonet Services

Zeev Haskal
Mega Group Invest.

Bonnie Henderson
The Walt Disney Co.

David Jones

Kevin Kelly
Great Circle
Family Foods, LLC

Araxy Krikorian
Financial Corp.

Ann Kuster
Honda North
America, Inc.

John Maloch
The Walt Disney Co.

Richard O'Reilly
Infonet Services

Joyce Martinez
Panda Restaurant Group

Carlton Seyforth
ACCO Engineered Systems

Lauren Waldvogel

Tom Whitesell
Port of Long Beach

LA RIMS Board Officers 2004

Michael Carlin, ARM, CPCU

Executive V.P.
Dennis Healy

Rae Knapp, CPCU, ARM

RIMS Delegate
Kathy Merkovsky

Tanya Karn, ARM, ALCM
Stacy Stevens, CPCU, ARM, AIC

Paula Ferrini
Becky Smith, ARM

Facilities & Communication
Diane Wren, ARM

Scott Ritto, ARM

Legislation & Compliance
Ruth Lindstrom, ARM

Public Relations
Madeline Ramirez, ARM

Todd Marumoto
Bill Witt

L.A. RIMS Office
Amber Brown

If you would like to submit articles for the monthly newsletter, please note that articles must be received by  the 15th of each month.   Submit articles to RIMS@emaoffice.com

Please submit a correction to the RIMS directory to

Copyright 2004,
Risk and Insurance
Management Society,
Los Angeles Chapter


President's Message

Spring has arrived and the days are getting longer which I truly enjoy. The RIMS National 42nd Annual Business Conference and Exhibition was recently held in San Diego. The conference started on Sunday April 19th and ended on April 22nd. The conference attracted more than 10,000 attendees and 400 exhibiting companies, offering the widest range of insurance educational and networking opportunities available.

On Monday morning, the Annual Membership Meeting was held at the San Diego Convention Center in downtown San Diego. The purpose of the meeting is to look upon the past year and examine the future of the society. The outgoing President, Lance Ewing, and the incoming President, Nancy L. Chambers, provided excellent reflections on the society’s year-over-year goals and objectives. I have listened to Lance speak several times during his presidency and he always focuses on Leadership and Integrity – we were not disappointed with his farewell address. One comment that I will remember and hopefully continue to apply is never allowing your ego to influence making good, sound decisions either at work or at home – this is obviously easier said than done. Thank you Lance for a great year and we look forward to an eventful year with Nancy.

The meeting also includes performance awards to various chapters and individuals. The Los Angeles Chapter was very proud to have our own, John Pinner, retired Assistant Treasurer of Mattel, receive the Heart of RIMS award for all his dedication and hard work for our Chapter. We had said this many times, but here it is again: Thank you John, you will be missed. The conference started on a high note and ended on a high note.

 The Los Angeles Chapter hosted a Thursday session titled California Workers’ Comp – Where Do We Go From Here? The session was a tremendous success and was attended by over 250 participants. The panelists provided an overview of the new workers’ compensation reforms and discussed how these new reforms will benefit employers in reducing their workers’ compensation costs. The panel was the Who’s Who in California Worker Compensation and included Steve Brenner of Wasserman, Comden, Casselman & Pearson; Christine Baker of the Department of Industrial Relations; Lori Kammerer of Kammerer & Company; Tim East the Chair, CA Coalition on WC and Director, RM Disney; Earl Sherman from Ralph’s; Judie Tsanopoulos from St. Joe’s; Vicki Galli from LMC; and David Holmquist from LAUSD. On behalf of the Los Angeles Chapter, we extend our sincere appreciation to the panelist for their perspective on this critical issue. I would also like to thank Todd Marumoto, Maria Bayne of Bayne Consulting and Bernie Melchionne of Mattel and Ruth Lindstrom of Jacobs that were instrumental in the success of this session.

 Again, thank you for your continued support and as Lance Ewing would say, “Focus on Leadership and Integrity.”

Michael Carlin

L.A. RIMS President

Chapter Clips

Golf Tournament May 10th, 2004 Brookside Country Club

Have you signed up?  Better hurry, you don’t want to miss this years LA RIMS/Zurich Charitable Golf Tour. Take advantage of our online registration at  http://larims.org/golf_04.html The deadline is fast approaching and you need to register today. We are asking that you bring your business card to qualify for the prize raffle. Can’t miss this event…..sign up now!!!!

Volunteers and Prizes

Would you like to help out the annual golf tournament?  Would your company like to donate a prize for the evening raffle?  How about a small item for the golfers goody bag. Contact LA RIMS office at (818) 842-6096.


What a better way to advertise than by sponsoring a hole at the annual golf tournament. The cost is $1,500 which includes a sign displayed on the course to let every player and businesses know that you are helping support our local RIMS Chapter. In addition, your company will be recognized in the program at the event and on our website, www.larims.org.  For more information, contact the L.A. RIMS office at (818) 842-6096.

RIMS National Annual Conference - April 18-22

John Pinner accepting the Heart of RIMS Award

Scott Ritto, Diane Wren and Michelle Darringer

Ellen Vinck, Diane Wren, Rae Knapp and Kathy Merkovsky

Worker's Compensation Fraud

Workers Compensation Fraud

From:  Valley Coastal ASSE

Location:  Holiday Inn

21101 Ventura Blvd, Woodland Hills, CA 

View Map

When:  Tuesday, May 18, 11:30a.m.

Phone:  818-759-8073

Cost:  $20.00 Per Person

Pay Now

Ms. Arranga is a seasoned prosecutor for the LA County District Attorney's Office.  She received her BA from the UC at Berkley in 1984.  Ms. Arrange has been a prosecutor for the LA County District Attorney's Office for 20 years.

Workers' comp laws were created to avoid disputes over the compensation of workers injuries.  The laws sought to expedite benefits to injured workers and avoid costly legal disputes by creating a "no fault" system that eliminated the issue of negligence.  In the 80's and early 90's, insurance costs skyrocketed.  This negatively impacted our economy and caused many businesses to leave California due to an inability to pay the excessively high premiums.

Find out how you can fight these high costs!!!!!

Legislative Updates


Ruth Lindstrom

LA Chapter of RIMS Becomes a Member of California Coalition on Workers’ Compensation (CCWC)

The LA Chapter of RIMS recently became a member of the CCWC.  The CCWC is the largest statewide coalition of employers in California that focuses solely on workers’ compensation issues.  CCWC provides legislative and regulatory updates to its members, evaluates and provides input in areas of  workers’ compensation policy to the legislature and regulatory agencies, and on a regular basis, mobilizes its membership to effect at the grassroots level, positive change to the workers’ compensation system in California. 

Given the importance of workers’ compensation to our employers, membership of CCWC will prove to be a good value.  CCWC provides consolidated information, mobilization techniques and resources for concise, timely and informative materials in the effort to effect workers’ compensation reform.  This has been especially true this year with the passage of the new workers’ compensation legislation. 

 The website address for CCWC is www.ccwcworkcomp.org

California Workers’ Compensation Legislation

A summary of the 2004 workers’ compensation reform legislation has been completed by CCWC.  You can access the summary by going to their website. 

As noted by our LA RIMS President, Michael Carlin, the LA Chapter sponsored a session on this topic at the RIMS National Conference and the panelists provided an overview of the new legislation.  It was the consensus of the panelists that the reform legislation will provide marked improvement to our expensive system.  The slides from that session can be accessed via the LA RIMS website www.larims.org

Job Opportunities
Coordinator of Risk Management and Litigation

Gemstar-TV Guide International, Hollywood, CA

Duties: Receives, reviews and, if applicable, reconciles loss runs from existing and expiring carriers. Maintains files on all claims (e.g., workers comp, general liability and auto liability) and processes requests for certificates of insurance. Assists in the gathering and compiling of information for submission to the insurance carriers. Completes insurance applications and maintains database of underwriting information. Analyzes insurance quotes and premiums, and processes premium payments. Maintains files relating to correspondence, binders, invoices and premium quotes. Follows up for policies with insurance brokers and carriers and assists in reviewing such policies upon receipt. Photocopies, scans documents for e-mail capability, faxes, word processing and spreadsheets as required.

Requirements: 3-5 years related experience in a major law firm or in-house legal affairs department. Strong Word, Excel, and PowerPoint skills and typing speed of 80+ WPM a must. Good organizational and communications skills, as well as solid attention to detail. BA/BS degree highly preferred.

Company Information:

Gemstar-TV Guide Corporate - Gemstar-TV Guide International, Inc. is a leading media and technology company focused on consumer television guidance and home entertainment. The Company's businesses include: television media and publishing properties; interactive program guide services and products; and technology and intellectual property licensing. Additional information about the Company can be found at www.gemstartvguide.com.

Qualified candidates should be-mail their resume and salary history to jobs01@tvguide.com. NO PHONE CALLS, PLEASE. EOE.


Title: Risk Manager

Please contact Josh Goodman, BridgeGate, 949-553-9200 ext. 233

Company Description: Leading Provider of Dental Practice Management Services in a $73B industry.

Size: ~2000 total people, 128 affiliated dental offices.

Growth: $224M in revenue. Growth of 4% year over year. EBITDA is expected to grow from 8.9% to 11%. Opening 5 dentist offices a year.

Reports to: CFO


* Establish Risk philosophy

* Manage Broker - Willis

* Support office locations

* Provide Litigation support

* Implement policies and procedures to reduce claims

* Oversight of D&O, EPLI, Crime, Fiduciary, Auto, E&O, WC, G&L

Personality: Customer service oriented, strategic in nature, thinks outside of the box


* 5+ years experience in a Risk Management role.

* Multi-Site location experience preferred

* Degree preferred

* Somebody who can work with limited supervision

* Limited Travel




California Pizza Kitchen, the winner of the "2002 and 2003 People Report™ Best People Practices Award" for lowest management and hourly turnover, one of Forbes' Top 200 Small Businesses, and one of BusinessWeek's Top 100 Growth Companies, has an excellent opportunity for a Risk Control Manager at our Restaurant Support Center in Los Angeles.


The Risk Control Manager will be responsible for mitigating the organization’s exposure to risk by developing, coordinating, and maintaining risk management activities.  The position will provide leadership and support of the claims management process, safety programs, and the administration of the Company’s insurance programs (including renewals).


Principal duties and responsibilities will include:

·     Analyzing and classifying risks as to frequency and severity

·     Selecting appropriate loss prevention techniques and implementing programs to minimize losses

·     Ensure the timely reporting, investigation, and settlement of claims

·     Educate, advise, and provide support to the restaurant’s Operations staff

·     Oversee the compilation and distribution of reports

·     Able to effectively interface with claims representatives, insurance broker, and internal customers (including Operations, HR, Facilities, Accounting departments)

·     Overseeing the insurance renewal process (to assist with budget planning, evaluating coverages, assimilating renewal information)


Qualified individuals must have:

·        Bachelor’s degree in business, finance, or insurance

·        3-5 years of equivalent work experience with training in claims,  risk management/insurance (preferably in a retail setting)

·        Effective interpersonal and customer service skills

·        Excellent written communications skills

·        Proficient computer skills with Microsoft Office products

·        Ability to work in a fast-paced, team-oriented environment

·        Strong analytical and quantitative skills



·        Tremendously strong company culture and brand

·        Competitive salary with annual bonus potential.

·        Outstanding 401K plan with company match

·        Complete Health Care Package

·        Management and Employee Stock Purchase Program


...and the opportunity to advance your career with a growing company!


If you think we might be your type, fax a resume to (310) 568-7702, or forward your resume online at cpk.com.


RIMS Western Regional Conference  

Please plan on joining us this fall for the RIMS 2004 Western Regional Conference at the Hyatt Newporter in the Back Bay area of Newport Beach hosted by the four Southern California Chapters:  Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and Inland Empire.  This is the only closed conference remaining on the RIMS schedule and is quite a unique experience.  This means that, while we anticipate some of the speakers at the educational sessions may be brokers, underwriters, attorneys and other service providers, registration is limited to risk managers who are deputy members of RIMS (or those eligible for deputy membership) and to educational, student and affiliate members.  This leads to an open interchange with your peers to work towards resolving today’s challenges and preparing for tomorrow in a casual, relaxed environment.

The Hyatt Newporter offers 26 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds with fantastic amenities including three outdoor pools, bicycle rentals, jogging paths, a fitness center, tennis courts and an on-site 9 hole / par 3 golf course.  The hotel is undergoing a $10 million transformation of all public rooms, meeting space and guest rooms which will be completed this spring so it will truly be a grand setting for our conference.  Fashion Island and Balboa Island are within reasonable walking distance but complimentary transportation is provided if you don’t want to bother with finding a parking spot.

Local attendees are not obligated to stay at the hotel but it’s a great opportunity for a getaway since the conference guest room rate is only $130 per night (that’s not a typo – it’s one hundred and thirty dollars!!!) and also applies to stays three days before and three days after the conference dates on a space-available basis.  A special conference registration rate will be available for spouses/guests so that they can join the group for meals while taking advantage of the surroundings for the rest of the day.

The planning committee is working on the program and is open to your suggestions.  What would you like to hear about?  Have you heard any really good speakers lately?  Would you like to be a speaker?

Please pass on any ideas, comments or questions to Kathy Merkovsky at
(310) 732-3971 or you can contact her at