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Burns & Wilcox Announces Leadership Promotions for Los Angeles and Tampa Offices

Sylvia Ornelas promoted to Associate Vice President in Los Angeles; John Heaner promoted to Associate Manager Director in Tampa

DETROIT (December 11, 2019)Burns & Wilcox, North America’s leading insurance wholesale broker and underwriting manager, today announced two leadership promotions in its Los Angeles, California and Tampa, Florida offices. Sylvia Ornelas was promoted to Associate Vice President in addition to her current role as Director, Personal Insurance, and John Heaner was promoted to Associate Managing Director from Underwriting Manager, Commercial Insurance.

In the new role as Associate Vice President, Ornelas works closely on the strategic direction and overall growth of the Los Angeles office while overseeing the Personal Insurance business. Beginning her career with Burns & Wilcox as an underwriter technical assistant nearly 24 years ago, her long-standing dedication has led her to various managerial positions within the company. She reports to Tim Burnett, Corporate Vice President, Managing Director, Burns & Wilcox, Los Angeles.

“Sylvia is a strong example of a professional who has taken advantage of the diverse career and growth opportunities available within the Burns & Wilcox network,” said Burnett. “Her decades of commitment to the company and growth of the Personal Insurance business is a testament to the positive impact she makes with her team and with her clients.”

Based in the Burns & Wilcox Tampa office, Heaner will oversee and manage day-to-day operations and team growth to support the office strategy. With more than 10 years of underwriting experience, Heaner is known for his expertise and leadership within the Commercial Insurance space and has been instrumental in the growth of the office since joining nearly five years ago. He reports to Rebecca Roberts, Vice President, Burns & Wilcox, Florida.

“John has been a driving force for the growing Tampa office and continues to build its robust Commercial Insurance business,” said Roberts. “Burns & Wilcox has operated in Florida for more than 30 years and with his support, the Tampa office has experienced 15 percent organic growth in 2019.”

About Burns & Wilcox

Burns & Wilcox is the industry’s leading wholesale insurance broker and underwriting manager internationally recognized for its expertise in commercial and professional liability, property, marine and personal insurance.

H.W. Kaufman Group, parent company to Burns & Wilcox, has over 60 offices across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom and employs more than 2,000 professionals. Founded in 1969 and headquartered in Metro Detroit, H.W. Kaufman Group also includes: Burns & Wilcox Brokerage, Burns & Wilcox Canada, Atain Insurance Companies, Afirm, Global Excess Partners, RB Jones, Stonemark, Minuteman Adjusters, Kaufman Institute, and London-based, Chesterfield Insurance Brokers, Lochain Patrick, Cranbrook Underwriting, Node International and Burns & Wilcox United Kingdom. More information can be found at and