James River Insurance Company and its affiliate James River Management Company has appointed Richard Schmitzer as the new president and CEO. He succeeds Joseph Morris who will become managing director of corporate development at James River Group, the parent company of James River Insurance Company.

Mr Schmitzer joined James River Insurance Company in July 2009 as senior vice president and chief underwriting officer following around eighteen years at Scottsdale Insurance Company where he served in a variety of underwriting and underwriting management roles. Since joining James River, he has been responsible for all of the company’s underwriting direction.

Adam Abram, president and CEO of James River Group, said: “When Joe and I recruited Richard Schmitzer to James River it was with the intention of his eventually leading our E&S operations. We are first and foremost an underwriting company serving brokers with unusual and often hard-to-place business. I am confident that under Richard’s leadership, James River Insurance Company will maintain its commitment to solid underwriting while growing our business.”

Mr Schmitzer, said: “I am excited to have the opportunity to lead the extraordinary team of professionals we have assembled at James River. My colleagues here excel in all of the disciplines of operating an excess and surplus lines company. I am looking forward to this new challenge.”