Gauteng Women in Insurance (GWII) is pleased to announce that Wilmine De Ridder, a GWII committee member, has assumed the position of GWII Deputy President for 2020/2021.
Stepping in as the new Deputy President, Wilmine tells us a little bit more about herself and how she came to join the GWII.
A Q&A session
Q. Tell us a little about yourself and your career in insurance.
I started my insurance career in 2003, at Mutual and Federal as a Claims Consultant, and over time I have moved up the ranks to Team Leader then Manager, and now Head of Claims. I have worked at Hollard, Miway, FSP Solutions, Discovery and I am currently at Constantia Insurance. Working in claims has been a passion of mine and I have always loved it. I find that in claims no day is the same and you are always dealing with something different. It keeps a person on their toes. The atmosphere in claims is always a buzz and always busy. I thrive on the pressure to always provide the best service possible and pay as many valid claims as possible.
Q. How did you come to join the GWII?
I became involved with the GWII, as from experience, I could see that the insurance industry was pretty much a man’s world. I always saw the guys going on golf days, and as a woman, we were generally always left to run the show at the office and hold the fort while the gents played their golf. The GWII has given women the opportunity to rub shoulders with other likeminded ladies. The GWII has also provided a platform for ladies in the industry to be recognised for all that we have to offer in this male dominated industry, which I think is fantastic. I am all about empowering not only myself as a woman, but empowering or hopefully inspiring other amazing women as well.
Q. Why do you believe you are suited to the position of Deputy President?
I see this as a huge honour, to have been selected, because the GWII is very close to my heart. I truly live the GWII Vision, where we collaborate and promote all ages of woman in this dynamic insurance industry to grow and become the “better” you. We need to add value and also have a social responsibility to empower all ladies in the industry, with the “flavour” each of us have that makes us different and unique
Q. As a Deputy President, what will you be bringing to the table?
I ended up in the insurance industry by default, but love every bit of it, and will always promote our dynamic industry with all the woman out there. Passion is one of my trademarks, where I give my full capacity towards something I believe in, and the rest of the committee will feel this as well. I have a lot to learn still, and a lot to give, where with each opportunity that comes along, I grab it with both hands and, we need to enjoy every minute of it.
Q. What excites you about the year ahead and the role you will be playing on the committee in 2020/2021?
2020 was a year with a lot of change and challenges, where we could not function normally, but this is the new “normal”, where we are looking forward to 2021 to renew our position in the industry and also to collaborate as women together in a fantastic industry which is evolving daily. I think all will agree that what we miss is the human interaction, but 2021 can only be better than this.
Q. Your message to members?
To all the lovely ladies in the insurance industry… become a member of the GWII and come and collaborate, engage and have fun with all the other ladies in the industry… we have exciting plans for 2021 and you don’t want to miss out. The GWII is a fantastic professional platform to develop and learn from all the fantastic ladies in our industry, this also includes the opportunity to engage in leadership programmes, relevant networking and some fun. Come join us and see for yourself!
Wilmine De Ridder
Head of Claims
Constantia Insurance Company Limited