JOHNSTON, R.I., USA—FM Global, one of the world’s largest commercial property insurers, is creating a new division within the company to further strengthen its focus on serving the property risk management needs of the forest products and chemical industries.


James P. O’Brien, a 31-year veteran of the company, and currently senior vice president and Central USA division manager, has been promoted to oversee FM Global’s newly created Canada and Specialty Industries Division. Ken Lavigne, head of FM Global’s Canada division, is retiring at the end of the year.

Johnell R. Holly, currently operations senior vice president and manager of FM Global’s New York operations and a 19-year veteran of the company, has been promoted to succeed O’Brien as Central USA division manager.

“FM Global is doubling down on our long-term approach to the forest products and chemical sectors and reaffirming our long-time commitment to Canada,” said Bret Ahnell, FM Global executive vice president. “This move creates a strong strategic opportunity to leverage the synergies of our client base, our insurance broker relationships and our property risk improvement expertise in high hazard sectors and other industries with complex property exposures. In particular, Jim’s track record working with clients that share FM Global’s philosophy that the majority of loss is preventable will put us on an even stronger path to growth in these specialty areas.”

O’Brien began his career with FM Global in 1989 as a loss prevention engineering consultant in Wisconsin and has since held roles with increasing responsibility and business impact. O’Brien earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in engineering sciences from Loras College, Dubuque, Iowa, and a Bachelor of Science in industrial engineering from Northern Illinois University.

Holly began his career as a loss prevention engineering consultant in 2001 in FM Global’s Seattle, Washington operations and served in various management positions in the company’s Los Angeles, Singapore and New York operations. Holly holds a Bachelor of Science degree in systems engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point.

“Johnell’s experience around the world with the U.S. Army and FM Global makes him the right leader at the right time for our Central Division, which has client relationships with many of America’s core industrial companies,” said Ahnell. “He has solid relationships with insurance brokers, and a proven ability to develop long-term partnerships with clients committed to property risk management and resilience.”

About FM Global
Established nearly 200 years ago, FM Global is a mutual insurance company whose capital, scientific research capability and engineering expertise are solely dedicated to property risk management and the resilience of its client-owners. These owners, who share the belief that the majority of property loss is preventable, represent many of the world’s largest organizations, including one of every three Fortune 1000 companies. They work with FM Global to better understand the hazards that can impact their business continuity in order to make cost-effective risk management decisions, combining property loss prevention with insurance protection.