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Aon Promotes Ward Ching and Michael Gruetzmacher to Head Strategic Solutions and Innovation Practice in North America
New team dedicated to delivering breakthrough solutions that enhance decision making

CHICAGO, Feb. 22, 2022Aon plc (NYSE: AON), a leading global professional services firm, today announced it has formalized the Strategic Solutions and Innovation (SSI) practice within Commercial Risk Solutions in North America, furthering the firm’s commitment to innovation and excellence in meeting unmet client needs. Risk and Insurance Management Society award winner Ward Ching, head of strategic solutions and innovation, and Michael Gruetzmacher, head of alternative risk transfer and innovation, will spearhead the practice. Bleu Bettencourt will join the team as managing director, alternative risk transfer and innovation.

The SSI team will work with clients, colleagues and markets to design and implement innovative solutions that enhance decision making, help navigate new forms of volatility, reduce the relevance gap created by unmet needs and effectively match capital to risk. The introduction of this group is more relevant than ever as organizations are increasingly experiencing unprecedented volatility and risk.

“Aon has always offered strategic risk solutions, but the emergence and acceleration of disruptive risks propelled us to bring together this team in a way that makes our specialists even more accessible to address unmet client needs and to deliver the breadth of our differentiated capabilities,” said Joe Peiser, Aon’s Commercial Risk Solutions leader for North America.

“There couldn’t be two people more fit to lead this team other than Ward and Michael. Ward brings more than 40 years of risk finance and enterprise risk management experience to the table and Michael has led the development of non-traditional insurance solutions and alternative risk transfer frameworks for clients.  The two complement each other well and will help us to further innovate new solutions,” said Maureen Toomey, Aon’s head of Commercial Risk Solutions strategy and execution for North America.

The SSI team will aim to bring new value-generating ideas and alternatives to traditional risk transfer approaches through its talent and expertise, intended to facilitate client decision making. The goal is to bring clients quantified risk insights and scaled solutions for risk retention and risk transfer across the full portfolio of risk that will enable clients to make better decisions.

Ching added, “I am most excited to carry forward our approach to working with clients by building a team that will continue to bring them innovative solutions. We will utilize the great pool of talent that Aon nurtures and help them deliver the best insights, so our clients are better informed. I am confident that this new structure will enable us to provide superior outcomes for all of our clients.”

More information about Aon’s Commercial Risk Solutions is available here.


About Aon
Aon plc (NYSE: AON) exists to shape decisions for the better — to protect and enrich the lives of people around the world. Our colleagues provide our clients in over 120 countries with advice and solutions that give them the clarity and confidence to make better decisions to protect and grow their business. 

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