Faces in the Industry: Chris Coleman, Oversea Yacht Insurance
By: Sean Smith
Date posted: Mar 06, 2019 Wed
Tell us where you are from, what brought you to Florida, and how long you’ve lived here.
I was actually born here in Broward County, but spent the second half of my childhood in North Georgia off of Lake Lanier. I have been back in South Florida for 6 years now, determined to never be too far from the ocean again.
Where do you work, what is your job title, and what does your job entail?
I work at Oversea Commercial Marine, a subsidiary of Oversea Yacht Insurance. I’m the Director of our Commercial Marine insurance department and fulfill the role of a Yacht Insurance Agent as well. My current title is Commercial Marine Specialist, and I am responsible for commercial accounts of all shapes and sizes, from maritime attorneys to shipyards, yacht dealers/brokers to research vessels, shark diving tour operators to marine product wholesalers/retailers. From beginning of an inquiry to day-to-day client interaction, I help procure all lines of coverage including but not limited to: Marine General Liability, Cyber/Crime, Protection & Indemnity, Bumbershoots, Hull & Machinery, Cargo/Stock Throughput, Yacht/Charter Brokers Legal Liability, Professional Liability (Errors & Omissions), Contractors Pollution, Workers Comp/USL&H, and Kidnap Ransom & Extortion.
How did you initially become interested in the marine industry?
I have always had a fascination with the boating industry, but never thought I would find myself immersed in it. At an early point in my insurance career, I stumbled upon a few marine clients and became fixated on trying to break into and fix the multitude of errors I repeatedly find in this niche market that we find ourselves in. What I have discovered is that there is a lack of insurance professionals who are trained or proficient in marine laws and coverage requirements. Marine Insurance is unique, it’s been around for centuries, and yet it still is constantly evolving. This impermanence fuels my desire to think abstractly and problem solve; and, turns what most typically feel is a generally “monotonous” work product into a new challenge on a daily basis.
What is your favorite or most valuable benefit of membership in MIASF?
There are many benefits to membership in MIASF, but I believe the opportunity to grow my relationships within the industry and giving back top the list. I am a huge advocate on leaving it better than you found it, and that’s what motivates me to volunteer. From the Plywood Regatta to Spin-a-thon to involvement with the Workforce & Education committee, all of the volunteer events and opportunities to support and educate potential new blood is what makes being a part of MIASF satisfying.
Describe some of the other community organizations or events that you are involved with or participate in.
At present I am the Events Chair for Young Professionals in Yachting’s USA chapter, as well as an active member in the US Superyacht Association, and International Yacht Brokers Association. I am currently assisting the Young Professionals in Yachting International Board with their Inaugural Sailing Trip in Croatia this summer, bringing together the 7 existing chapters for a week of seminars, sailing workshops, and best practices networking opportunities. I also am working on joining the advocacy team that will be attending the American Boating Conference in Washington DC in an effort to do my part to prove that this industry is for all generations, and we are in it together.
Tell us about your hobbies and what kinds of things do you do for fun.
Currently I am the team captain of a co-ed 7v7 soccer team comprised of a group of industry professionals, but I also enjoy any opportunity to get out on the water. I have recently started paddle boarding and look forward to joining some of my colleagues in a few amateur races in the future. When I do find the free time, I try to make it an effort to travel and see the world while I still can.