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Barlow chosen for Insurance Hall of Fame.

Barlow Chosen for Insurance Hall of Fame

Douglas Barlow recently became the first risk manager to be inducted into The Insurance Hall of Fame. At the annual seminar of the International Insurance Society on July 9 in Paris, Mr. Barlow was honored by more than 600 people for his precedent-setting achievements in the field of risk management.

As risk manager for Canada's Massey-Ferguson Ltd. from 1959 to 1972, Mr. Barlow created the cost-of-risk concept and established the first multinational insurance program, both of which are widely used in the insurance and risk management fields today.

Mr. Barlow said his induction into the hall of fame reflects the dependent relationship between insurance and risk management. "It's a recognition of the place that risk management should occupy as a companion to insurance," he said in an interview from his home in Ontario. "Risk managers and insurers depend on each other. Our society could not exist without insurance and insurance could not exist without people buying it."

The cost of risk, Mr. Barlow explained, provides arguments in favor of businesses spending money on loss prevention. He defined the cost of risk as the sum of four basic elements: cost of measures for loss prevention; insurance premiums; the losses sustained net of recoveries from insurers and third parties; and administrative expenses. In short, Mr. Barlow said, it is one formula for all the factors related to the management of risk.

"The cost of risk proves to corporations that loss prevention is good business," he added. "It shows that the return they are getting is greater than the money they are putting in."

In 1962 at Massey-Ferguson, a manufacturer of agricultural equipment, Mr. Barlow implemented the first global insurance and risk management program for all classes of risk. In 1965 he created a captive, Polygon Insurance Co., for Massey-Ferguson's property and liability coverages.

Within the RIMS organization, Mr. Barlow is well-known. He served as president of the society in 1971 and of its Ontario chapter from 1964-65. In 1979 he received the Donald W. Stuart Award for his contributions to risk management in Canada, and in 1982, the Goodell Award, RIMS highest honor, for outstanding achievement in furthering the goals of risk management and the society.

Born in East Angus, a small town in Quebec, Mr. Barlow, who speaks French and English, earned a degree in mathematics from Bishop's University in Lennoxville, Quebec. He also holds degrees in common law from Oxford University and in French civil law from McGill University in Montreal.

Starting out in the insurance business, Mr. Barlow worked as general counsel for an insurance brokerage in Quebec City and was a professor of insurance at Laval University. One year after opening his own law firm in 1954, he contracted tuberculosis, forcing him to leave the practice. In 1959 he was hired by Toronto-based Massey-Ferguson as an insurance buyer, a title, he said, he quickly changed to risk manager.

Throughout his career, Mr. Barlow lectured widely on insurance and risk management. His articles have appeared in the AMA Management Handbook, Industrial Canada, Canadian Risk Management, Business Insurance and Risk Management.

In effect, Mr. Barlow first proposed the cost-of-risk approach in an article in the September 1962 issue of National Insurance Buyer magazine, the predecessor of Risk Management. The idea spurred a series of surveys supported by RIMS and later became a base-line comparison used by many corporations worldwide.

Mr. Barlow said his greatest interests are marine insurance and the legal aspects of insurance and risk management. He added that he is currently involved in research on the parameters of risk management and the cost of risk.

Mr. Barlow said risk management has progressed enormously in the past 40 years. "Risk management is in a state of transition in terms of responsibility and scope of authority within an organization," he said. "There has been a substantial change. But this type of change doesn't move in a straight line."

The hall of fame was initiated in 1957 to recognize major figures in the history of insurance. Originally financed and administered by The Griffith Foundation for Insurance Education at Ohio State University, the hall of fame was transferred to the International Insurance Society in 1984 and is now based at the University of Alabama.

Mr. Barlow is the second Canadian to be elected to the hall of fame. R. Leighton Foster, superintendent of insurance for Ontario, was elected in 1967. He joins such laureates as Benjamin Franklin (1957), Alfred M. Best (1962) and Maurice R. Greenberg, chief executive officer of the American International Group Inc., and Edwin S. Overman, president emeritus of The American Institutes, who were inducted last year.

PHOTO : Former RIMS President Douglas Barlow addresses members of the International Insurance

PHOTO : Society in Paris after being inducted into The Insurance Hall of Fame. He is the first

PHOTO : risk manager to be inducted.

PHOTO : Ian M. Rolland, chairman of the International Insurance Society's board of directors,

PHOTO : right, congratulates former RIMS President Douglas Barlow on his induction into the hall

PHOTO : of fame.
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Title Annotation:Douglas Barlow
Author:Oshins, Alice H.
Publication:Risk Management
Date:Sep 1, 1990
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