Our Executive Management Team
Our executive officers, like our general employee populace, all have very long tenure with our organization. They bring deep expertise in their area of specialty and a commitment to our independent agents and policyholders.
Christine Sears, CPCU
"We believe in the value of relationships as a vital part of our corporate culture. Our corporate relationships include those with our employees, agents, business partners and the communities in which we live. Nurturing strong relationships with all our constituents gives me great satisfaction."
Chris Sears joined our company in 1980 as a financial analyst. She held various positions of increasing leadership in our company, and was elected to boards of directors of our affiliated companies during the 1990s, and to our Mutual Company’s board in 2002. Prior to being elected president & CEO, Sears served as executive vice president & COO for five years and was responsible for underwriting, claims, and our company’s third-party claims administration subsidiary, Inservco Insurance Services, Inc.
Sears was raised in the Harrisburg area and earned her Bachelor of Business Administration degree (magna cum laude) from the Pennsylvania State University. Sears is a Certified Public Accountant, holds the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter designation from the American Institutes for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters, and has completed the Insurance Executive Development Course of the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Robert B. Brandon, CPCU, ARM
"Our culture of valuing relationships, truly considering the needs of all constituents in our decision making and placing an emphasis on always doing the right thing differentiates us from many companies. These values and behaviors square nicely with our Mutual Company organizational structure – we exist to serve others. We owe a great deal of gratitude to our agents and policyholders that entrust us with their books of business and financial security."
Robert B. Brandon joined Penn National Insurance in 1995 as a property underwriting line of business manager. He was named director of Commercial Lines Underwriting in 1997 and promoted to regional vice president of the company’s Harrisburg Branch Office in 1999. He was named vice president—Commercial Lines in 2002, and vice president—Underwriting Operations in 2005. In 2010, he was elected senior vice president—Underwriting Operations.
Brandon is a graduate of Millersville University, Millersville, Pa., with a bachelor’s degree in political science. He holds the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter and Associate in Risk Management professional designations. He completed the Insurance Executive Development Program of the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
sr. vice president, Insurance operations
John joined Penn National Insurance in 2006 as vice president – Personal Lines. Before joining us, he was assistant vice president – Personal Lines at Grange Mutual Insurance. Additional prior experience included senior product management, underwriting and pricing with GEICO Direct, and district management responsibilities for Erie Insurance Group. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Penn State University and an MBA from Frostburg State University. He completed the AICPCU Executive Development Program at The Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania, and earned the Associate in Risk Management designation from The Institutes.
Jacquelyn Anderson, CPCU, CPA, CIA
senior vice president,CFO and treasurer
Jacquelyn Anderson, CPA, CIA, was elected senior vice president, CFO and treasurer on July 25, 2016. Jacquelyn joined Penn National Insurance in 2012 as director of Internal Audit. Prior to joining the company, she worked as a certified public accountant for Brown, Schultz, Sheridan and Fritz. She attended Harrisburg Area Community College and is a graduate of The Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. degree in professional accountancy.
Karen C. Yarrish
senior vice president, secretary, and general counsel
Karen Yarrish is our senior vice president, secretary, and general counsel. She joined our company in 1990 as a legal intern, later became associate counsel, and in 1998 was appointed to the position of vice president–Legal, and assistant secretary. In addition to the Legal Department, she is responsible for our Administrative Services and Human Resources departments.
vice president, Human Resources
Thom joined our company in 2018, following a career in human resources consulting and corporate human resources leadership in several business segments.Thom has an extensive human resources background and has worked across a variety of industries, including pharmaceutical, health care, and financial services. He has 30-plus years of applied experience in human resources management, executive consulting and front-line business leadership.