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Mar 19, 2024

Welcome to RIMScast. Your host is Justin Smulison, Business Content Manager at RIMS, the Risk and Insurance Management Society.


As RISWORLD 2024 in sunny San Diego is just around the corner, I am delighted to welcome RIMS San Diego Chapter President Cheryl Berman to RIMScast. Cheryl is serving as Chapter President for the second time and has been a RIMS member since 1994. Sharing her background, Cheryl tells how she joined RIMS as she transitioned into the safety and workers’ compensation field working for a drywall and plaster specialty contractor. We discuss workers’ compensation, California’s new SB 553, the CA Workplace Violence Prevention Plan, and the RIMS San Diego Chapter. The RIMS San Diego Chapter is presenting a webinar on the new regulation on March 28th.

Listen in for Cheryl’s story of learning the risk management profession within the specialty contractor world.


Key Takeaways:

[:01] About RIMS and RIMScast.

[:14] Public registration for RISKWORLD 2024 is now open. Explore infinite opportunities with RIMS from May 5th through May 8th, 2024, in San Diego, California. Register at

[:31] About today’s EPISODE of RIMScast. Our guest is RIMS San Diego Chapter President Cheryl Berman. We’ll talk about construction safety, risk, and RISKWORLD 2024.

[:53] The RIMS-CRMP is the only competency-based risk management credential. That matters because earning the certification shows employers and recruiters that you have the skills necessary to manage risk and create value for your organization.
[1:10] Several Exam Prep virtual workshops are coming up. On March 19th and 20th, this two-day course will be presented with PARIMA. The next RIMS-CRMP-FED Exam Prep Virtual Workshop will be held from April 2nd through the 4th and led by Joe Mayo. Visit the certification page on for more information. A link is in these show notes.

[1:40] On March 20th at 9:00 a.m., Eastern, we have another informational session about Recertification: Keep Your RIMS-CRMP Active. I will be hosting that session, along with RIMS VP of Professional Development, Denise Osorio. If you have the CRMP and you don’t want the credits to lapse, find out how to keep it active! The link is in the notes.

[2:06] As you know, RISKWORLD 2024 is coming up from May 5th through May 8th, 2024, in sunny San Diego, California. Registration is open at and at the link in this episode’s show notes. Register today!

[2:23] In Episode 276 of RIMScast we had opening keynote Peter Diamandis join us. Check out that episode for just a taste of what’s in store for RISKWORLD 2024. The full roster of keynotes has been announced! I’m so excited! We will be welcoming Academy Award actress, director, and activist, Marlee Matlin!

[2:47] For our industry keynote, we will be rejoined by Evan G. Greenberg, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Chubb Limited and Chubb Group. That session will be sponsored by Chubb. Just announced, our closing keynote will be Daymond G. John. You know him from Shark Tank. He’s also the CEO and Founder of FUBU. I’m a big fan.

[3:11] I’m so excited for that closing keynote on May 8th! It will be extremely high-energy! Register at We want to see you there!

[3:22] My guest today has spent decades in construction risk. This is her second presidency of the RIMS San Diego Chapter. She is Cheryl Berman and she is here to discuss her career, construction risk, and safety risk. She has some words of wisdom for anyone moving into the construction and risk space.

[3:46] San Diego is our host chapter for RISKWORLD 2024, so we’ll be talking about that, as well. Cheryl Berman, RIMS San Diego Chapter President, welcome to RIMScast!

[4:30] Cheryl fell into risk management. She has always been in the building industry, starting in operations. She went from operations to asset protection, then to safety and workers’ compensation. When her company was spun off, it became Cheryl’s job to get insurance for the company. Nobody else at the company had insurance knowledge.

[5:25] That’s how Cheryl’s risk management career started. She joined RIMS at that time to become more knowledgeable about risk and insurance. That was in 1994. A RIMS member for 30 years!

[6:09] In 1994, RIMS met in person and had newsletters that came in the mail. There were committees, including Workers’ Compensation, Insurance, Safety and Loss Control, and Legal Legislation. Besides monthly chapter meetings, committees met two or three times a year. There was a lot of personal interaction.

[7:10] Construction wasn't a RIMS topic at the start, but there were other people in the chapter with a background in construction so that helped.

[7:58] Brady West is Cheryl’s employer. Brady West is a drywall contractor, including lathe and plaster and metal framing. It is a specialty contractor, not a general contractor. Brady West works primarily on commercial projects. Cheryl reviews contracts both upstream with clients and downstream with subcontractors.

[8:52] Cheryl is the whole Risk Group at Brady West. She’s a department of one. She is used to it. In some roles, she has had HR and Payroll report to her but she was the only risk manager. In one company Cheryl worked for, things landed on her desk randomly. A trainee had been told, “If you don’t know what to do with it, put it in Cheryl’s in box”!

[10:00] Workers’ Compensation is probably the number one thing that happens in most construction companies. Construction injuries can cause drastic changes in someone’s life or just require stitches and be done. When it changes a life, it is difficult. A claim is filed and it is hoped the worker will recover and return to work.

[11:47] California has a new Senate Bill for instituting a workplace violence prevention plan for any company that has an employee. Cheryl explains different issues that may come up at different locations, depending on the local population. The mandate takes effect on July 1, 2024. However, Cal OSHA has not come up with a final rule for plans.

[15:01] RIMS plug time! RIMS Virtual Workshops: Visit to see the full calendar. On March 27th and 28th, our good friend, Ken Baker, of Enterprise Risk Consulting, leads the two-day course, Fundamentals of Risk Management.

[15:24] Information about these workshops and others is on the RIMS Virtual Workshops page and a link to the full calendar is in this episode’s notes. There are RISKWORLD 2024 pre-conference workshops held on May 4th and 5th. A link is in this episode’s show notes.

[15:41] Topics include but are not limited to Applying and Integrating ERM, Fundamentals of Insurance, and a RIMS-CRMP Exam Prep Workshop. Go to and then go to Learn and then Workshops. You will find it there.

[15:56] On March 21st, Zurich presents Fraud Attitude Shifts in the Industry. On March 28th, our friends at TÜV SÜD GRC will present Inflation and Property Valuation: Aligning Your Assets with Reality. On April 11th, Clara Analytics returns to present AI’s Impact on Emerging Risk Management Trends.

[16:20] On April 18th, Hub International returns for the second installment of its Ready For Tomorrow Series, Challenging the Status Quo: Rethinking Your Casualty Risk Strategy. Visit to learn more about these webinars and to register! Links are in the show notes. Webinar registration is complimentary for RIMS members.

[16:44] Our friends at FERMA encourage you to participate in its inaugural International Risk Managers Survey, open through March 2024 to risk professionals from the U.S., Latin America, Asia-Pacific, and Africa. It is produced in partnership with PwC France. The results will be distributed in October 2024. A link is in this episode’s show notes.

[17:12] The RIMS San Diego Chapter on March 28th will host CA Workplace Violence Prevention Plan: Are You Ready for the New Regulation? That regulation is known as SB 553. A link to the RIMS San Diego Chapter event is in this episode’s show notes.

[17:44] Cheryl’s top priority in construction is workplace safety. In California, companies must have an injury and illness prevention plan. Cheryl has training prepared for all the tasks a worker would do. It’s constantly being tweaked as different work and machinery come down the pike. It’s reviewed as processes change; at the least, annually.

[19:22] In the three decades Cheryl has been in the profession, she believes more attention is paid now to risk management and safety. Awareness has improved.

[20:06] Cheryl’s advice to anyone entering the construction field as a risk professional is to understand the operations side before dictating what safety is. Have some experience in understanding the pressures of the workers, to help them better. Cheryl’s operations-side experience was helpful when she transferred to the administration side.

[20:43] Cheryl’s experience told her what workers can do and what they struggle with.

[21:26] At the first company where Cheryl worked in the asset protection side, they knew her from her 15 years of experience in operations. When she transitioned to a new company, the person who hired her was her champion. Cheryl shares a workers’ comp experience from that job that turned into a home run for her.

[23:51] The EEOC helped Cheryl get an outside sales position with very little experience so she worked hard to learn the trade. She worked only once briefly for someone who did not believe in her and she moved quickly to another job. She is very appreciative of the wonderful advocates and people who have helped her throughout her career.

[25:53] Justin noticed that the leadership of the RIMS San Diego Chapter is comprised almost entirely of women. They volunteer their time and are passionate about the profession and their careers. Cheryl says the chapter is fortunate to have some very capable people on the board.

[26:36] Cheryl tells about her time on the board, including two terms as president, first in 2002, and at present. She has been on the chapter board since 1995, with a five-year break. Her professional career grew parallel to her RIMS career.

[28:38] Cheryl leads by example showing that women can have a great career in risk management.

[29:37] Cheryl is very excited to have RISKWORLD 2024 in her home city of San Diego.

[30:15] The RIMS San Diego Chapter is planning a reception for RIMS staff, the board of directors, and RIMS past presidents on the Friday before RISKWORLD 2024 starts.

[31:02] Special thanks to RIMS San Diego Chapter President Cheryl Berman, for joining us here on RIMScast. Visit for more information. They have a fascinating session coming up on March 28th about SB 553 the CA Workplace Violence Prevention Plan. The link is in this episode’s show notes.

[31:33] Go to the App Store and download the RIMS App. This is an exclusive members-only benefit with all sorts of RIMS resources and coverage. Everybody loves the RIMS App!

[31:58] You can sponsor a RIMScast episode for this, our weekly show, or a dedicated episode. Links to sponsored episodes are in our show notes. RIMScast has a global audience of risk professionals, legal professionals, students, business leaders, C-Suite executives, and more. Let’s collaborate! Contact for more information.

[32:44] Become a RIMS member and get access to the tools, thought leadership, and network you need to succeed. Visit or email for more information.

[33:01] Risk Knowledge is the RIMS searchable content library that provides relevant information for today’s risk professionals. Materials include RIMS executive reports, survey findings, contributed articles, industry research, benchmarking data, and more.

[33:17] For the best reporting on the profession of risk management, read Risk Management Magazine at, and check out the blog at Justin Smulison is the Business Content Manager at RIMS. You can email Justin at

[33:59] Thank you for your continued support and engagement on social media channels! We appreciate all your kind words. Listen every week! Stay safe!


Mentioned in this Episode:

RISKWORLD 2024 — San Diego, CA | May 5–8, 2024

RISKWORLD Pre-Conference Workshops


RIMS DEI Council

Spencer Educational Foundation — Grants Page

RIMS-Certified Risk Management Professional (RIMS-CRMP)

RIMS-CRMP Virtual Workshops

2024 International Risk Manager Survey conducted by FERMA in partnership with PwC FERMA

RIMS San Diego Chapter

RIMS San Diego Chapter Presents: CA Workplace Violence Prevention Plan | March 28, 2024


RIMS Webinars:

Recertification: Keep Your RIMS-CRMP Active | Presented by RIMS | March 20, 2024

Fraud Attitude Shifts in the Industry | Sponsored by Zurich | March 21, 2024

Inflation and Property Valuation: Aligning Your Assets with Reality | Sponsored by TUV SUD GRC | March 28, 2024

AI’s Impact on Emerging Risk Management Trends | Sponsored by Clara Analytics | April 11, 2024

Hub’s “Ready for Tomorrow” series: “Challenging the Status Quo: Rethinking Your Casualty Risk Strategy” | Sponsored by Hub International | April 18, 2024

Upcoming Virtual Workshops:

See the full calendar of RIMS Virtual Workshops

RIMS-CRMP Prep Workshops

Related RIMScast Episodes:

“Water and Women in Risk with Sarah Mikolich”

“Giving Back with APIW President Liz Kramer”

“RISKWORLD 2024 Keynote Peter Diamandis”

Sponsored RIMScast Episodes:

“Alliant’s P&C Outlook For 2024” | Sponsored by Alliant (New!)

“Why Subrogation is the New Arbitration” | Sponsored by Fleet Response

“Cyclone Season: Proactive Preparation for Loss Minimization” | Sponsored by Prudent Insurance Brokers Ltd.

“Subrogation and the Competitive Advantage” | Sponsored by Fleet Response

“Cyberrisk Outlook 2023” | Sponsored by Alliant

“Chemical Industry: How To Succeed Amid Emerging Risks and a Challenging Market” | Sponsored by TÜV SÜD

“Insuring the Future of the Environment” | Sponsored by AXA XL

“Insights into the Gig Economy and its Contractors” | Sponsored by Zurich

“The Importance of Disaster Planning Relationships” | Sponsored by ServiceMaster


RIMS Publications, Content, and Links:

RIMS Membership — Whether you are a new member or need to transition, be a part of the global risk management community!

RIMS Virtual Workshops

On-Demand Webinars

Risk Management Magazine

Risk Management Monitor

RIMS-Certified Risk Management Professional (RIMS-CRMP)

RIMS-CRMP Stories — New interview featuring Dr. Lianne Appelt!

Spencer Educational Foundation


RIMS Events, Education, and Services:

RIMS Risk Maturity Model®

RIMS Events App Apple | Google Play

RIMS Buyers Guide


Sponsor RIMScast: Contact or for more information.


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About our guest:

Cheryl Berman, RIMS San Diego Chapter President

Risk Manager at Brady West, Inc.


Tweetables (Edited For Social Media Use):

Getting insurance for the company landed on my desk because there wasn’t anybody else in the company who knew anything about it. — Cheryl Berman


In one of the companies I worked for, things would just land on my desk and I’d ask “Why is this here?” But I’d figure it out and I’d deal with it. — Cheryl Berman


In California, companies must have an injury and illness prevention plan. — Cheryl Berman


We are fortunate to have some very capable people on our RIMS San Diego Chapter board. — Cheryl Berman