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Executive Leadership


At the turn of the new millennium, we had a vision to create a boutique insurance firm specializing in niche and hard to place business. So in 2000, we set out on a journey, armed with years of experience in the specialty insurance markets in London and the United States and launched American Special Risk. Our aim isn't to be the biggest broker - just the best within our chosen areas of expertise.


Our team brings deep, functional expertise, but we are known for our innovation and performance. We are passionate about what we do and we love helping our clients achieve unimagined levels of success. We help our clients navigate the specialty lines marketplace for their most complex challenges and build tailored solutions to help them achieve results where other firms simply don't deliver.

Mark Coons

Founder & President


Mark has over 25 years of senior-level experience having worked in all facets of the business. He started his career in the London market at Lloyd's and has held positions in commercial underwriting as well as retail, wholesale and treaty reinsurance broking. In addition to deep experience in all aspects of the insurance industry, he is accutely aware of the challenges and opportunities faced by agencies, having started and operated his own firm since 2000. Mark oversees all aspects of ASR, but remains most passionate about business development and helping our clients solve tough problems. Mark holds a B.A. in Politics from Queen's University in Canada.

O: 704.358.0447  


George Palmer

Senior Vice President


George joined American Special Risk in 2005 with experience in banking and finance. He is responsible for the management of numerous clients, with particular emphasis on insurance for ASR’s Financial Institutions, Crime and High Value Asset product areas. He also oversees many of our most important relationships with our underwriting partners both domestically and in London. George holds a B.A. in Economics from Hampden-Sydney College.

O: 704.358.4838


Traci Ertley

Director of Sales and Business Development​


Traci joined American Special Risk in 2015 after a highly successful career in marketing and sales in the sports and entertainment industry in New York City. She is responsible for all areas of business development for ASR, with a particular emphasis on building and maintaining relationships with our distribution partners. Traci is a consummate networker and is responsible for harnessing ASR’s various specialty capabilities to ensure that we meet the needs of our clients. She holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Bucknell University.

O: 917.561.6132  



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