Prudential Names Kent Grimes Head of Group Insurance Underwriting

In addition to underwriting experience in group and supplemental health, Grimes has a history of driving large technology initiatives and process modernization.

(Kent Grimes, Head of Group Insurance Underwriting, Prudential. Source: Prudential.)

Prudential (Newark, N.J.) has named Kent Grimes Head of Group Insurance Underwriting. In this role, Grimes will be responsible for growing and leading the overall underwriting strategy and execution for Prudential Group Insurance, with a focus on modernizing the company’s underwriting processes and underlying technology.  A statement from Prudential notes that Grimes has extensive experience in technology implementations that will serve the insurer’s plans to improve its underwriting capabilities. Grimes joined Prudential on March 27, reporting directly to Mike Estep, Head of Product.

Grimes joins Prudential from Reliance Standard (Philadelphia), where he was most recently Vice President of Underwriting. There he was responsible for driving profitable growth through key distribution partners, all middle market business, and for management of the policy issue process, according to the Prudential statement.

Technology-Enabled Change Initiatives

Mike Estep, Head of Product, Group Insurance, Prudential.

In addition to underwriting experience in group and supplemental health, Grimes brings a history of managing through large technology initiatives and modernization of quote processes and tools. Prior to his time at Reliance Standard, he held diverse management roles over 13 years at Unum. These included technology-enabled change initiatives focused on the quoting and pricing process, digital distribution, service operations, benefits, and various underwriting roles. Grimes is a graduate of St. Lawrence University, with an MBA from the University of Southern Maine. He is based in Portland, Maine, where he lives with his wife and two young children.

“We are thrilled to welcome Kent to Prudential Group Insurance,” comments Mike Estep, Head of Product, Group Insurance. “His technology experience that bolster underwriting capabilities, leadership experience, and deep knowledge are crucial strengths that will benefit us as we continue to optimize our portfolio and expand our capabilities to help the millions of customers we serve. I am confident his insights and skills will help drive our business forward as we focus on building Prudential Group Insurance into a leading benefits carrier.”

“At Prudential Group Insurance, we’re looking to transform and modernize our business to enhance our position in an increasingly competitive marketplace,” Estep adds. “Under Kent’s leadership, we will be, investing in technology and tools that enable our underwriting team to do their jobs more effectively and efficiently.”

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Anthony R. O’Donnell // Anthony O'Donnell is Executive Editor of Insurance Innovation Reporter. For nearly two decades, he has been an observer and commentator on the use of information technology in the insurance industry, following industry trends and writing about the use of IT across all sectors of the insurance industry. He can be reached at or (503) 936-2803.

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