Canadian Underwriter

Barry Penner named new chair of ICBC’s Board of Directors

March 23, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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Barry Penner, QC brings his legal skills and considerable experience with the Government of British Columbia – including as the province’ longest-serving environment minister – to his new duties as chair of the Insurance Corporation of B.C.’s (ICBC) Board of Directors.

Joined in businessPenner’s appointment – which runs Mar. 31, 2016 to Mar. 31, 2019 – was announced Tuesday by B.C. transportation and infrastructure minister Todd Stone. “Mr. Penner’s deep commitment to public and community service led him to accept the government’s request that he take on this challenging position. His extensive experience with government and the private sector will make him an excellent fit for this important role,” Stone says.

Penner (pictured below) replaces Ronald Olynyk, who has served as interim chair since Dec. 31, 2015, and will continue to do so until Mar. 31.

Barry Penner has been named the new chair of ICBC’s board of directors

Barry Penner has been named the new chair of ICBC’s board of directors

“I’m honoured to have been asked to take on this challenging and important role,” Penner says in a statement issued by ICBC. “Over the coming weeks, I will be reviewing key files and meeting with senior management and fellow board members to learn more about the organization and the issues it faces.”

Currently senior counsel and strategic advisor for Penner Pacific Advisory Services, Stone reports that Penner has served as B.C.’s environment minister, attorney general, minister of aboriginal relations and reconciliation and deputy house leader. Outside of politics, he “continued his legal career, working with stakeholders throughout the province to resolve challenging natural resource and environmental issues,” the minister adds.

“The B.C. government will continue to work with ICBC to identify and implement measures that will mitigate the causes of rate increases, to help ensure that ICBC insurance rates remain as low and as affordable as possible,” Stone says in the statement.

Related: ICBC asking for 5.5% increase to basic insurance rates

Adds Penner, “During my time as a Member of the Legislative Assembly, I saw how ICBC touches the lives of virtually every British Columbian. Drivers want rates to remain affordable, and when accidents, unfortunately, occur, they expect fair compensation and good service. My top priority will be helping ICBC accomplish these goals.”