PEARL RIVER, NY--(Marketwired - Sep 17, 2015) - ACORD, the non-profit global insurance standards and services organization, is pleased to announce that Bill Hartnett, former Head of Financial Services at Microsoft, will spearhead initiatives to bring new ways of thinking and doing business to the organization and the industry at-large as Head of Innovation for ACORD.

"ACORD is uniquely positioned in the insurance industry, with insurers, agents, brokers, solution providers, regulators, legislators and many other influencers," said Hartnett. "Having served on the ACORD Board of Directors and as a longtime volunteer for the organization, I was able to participate in its growth and change over the years. I'm looking forward to bringing even more to the table as a member of the ACORD team."

Hartnett has a special talent for trend spotting, linking technology innovation to insurance and making connections from outside the industry to improve the business. He has already made a significant contribution to ACORD as the creator of the ACORD Insurance Innovation Challenge (AIIC), the first insurance-specific innovation competition. Taking place at the ACORD2015 event this November in Boca Raton, the AIIC is poised to highlight pitches by 12 finalists in two categories, ACORD Innovators and Insurance Disruptors.

"This is a critical time not only for ACORD, but for the insurance industry," said Greg Maciag, CEO for ACORD. "It is not enough to keep a finger on the pulse of change today, action must also be taken. Consumer and business expectations are driving the change in technology as well as our business models, products and distribution channels. There is no one better qualified to fill this role for ACORD than Bill Hartnett." 

Hartnett has considerable experience providing strategic advice on the transformational power of technology in business. He spent nearly 20 years as Microsoft's top executive in financial services. He expanded Microsoft's presence in the insurance vertical, establishing the firm as an innovator, thought leader and change agent. Under Hartnett's leadership, Microsoft's financial services organization grew from a startup to a global business among the company's most strategic and demanding customers. 

As ACORD develops standards and related services for the insurance industry, Hartnett will play a central role in finding new methods of implementation and opportunities for collaboration. He will focus on expanding areas for new development and identifying fresh ideas.

For more information about the new role of innovation at ACORD, or for an opportunity to speak with Bill Hartnett, please contact Mark Westin at ACORD at 845-535-6465 or

ACORD (Association for Cooperative Operations Research and Development) is a global, nonprofit organization serving the insurance and related industries. ACORD facilitates the development of open consensus data standards and standard forms, and works with its members and partner organizations to drive implementation of those standards. ACORD members worldwide include hundreds of insurance and reinsurance companies, agents and brokers, software providers, financial services organizations and industry associations. ACORD maintains offices in New York and London. For more information, visit the association website at

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