Meet a fellow URMIAn and what he does
Justin Kraynack at Temple University
Director, Enterprise Risk Management
Misericordia University in Dallas, Pennsylvania for a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Marketing)
What was your first job?
My first job was as a purchasing manager for a large machine shop in Wilkes-Barre, PA. I spent the first ten years of my career working in manufacturing before starting in higher education as a contracts analyst.
How did you start your career in risk management?
I was the director of procurement and auxiliary services at Wilkes University when we began discussing a position in risk management and compliance. I was very interested in the idea of developing a risk and compliance program, and also in the opportunity to change my career. It has been one of the most rewarding decisions I made in my career.
Years in Risk Management:
I have been involved in purchasing and placing insurance for over 30 years. For just over a decade, I have been focused on risk management and compliance, managing the complete insurance portfolio.
Role in URMIA this year:
I have been an URMIA member for over a decade. Most recently, I was involved as a speaker presenting on enterprise risk management assessment techniques.
What's the biggest change you've seen in the risk management and insurance industry since you've been in it?
Risk management in higher education is constantly evolving. The biggest change I’ve noticed is the increasing inclusion of risk management in the decision-making process. Regarding insurance, the continuing hard market has been a significant change after enjoying many years of soft premiums and easy placements.
What emerging risks concern you the most?
In higher education, declining enrollments and the impending “cliff” need to be at the top of nearly every school's risk register. Student mental health has been a concern for years and, unfortunately, does not appear to be significantly improving. Hiring challenges are continuing to be an issue, and are affecting all areas of our institutions. And finally, information technology advances so rapidly that it will keep all of us on our toes for many years to come.
What's the most interesting situation you've encountered in your job?
COVID-19 was the most significant event in my career. I was tasked with co-chairing the response task force and got to see firsthand how an institution can change when necessary. We all had to learn how to do things differently, and for the most part, learning on the fly. What started as a two-week interruption became a two-year saga with constant changes and modifications to our plans. Reflecting on that time, I’m always taken back at how well institutions did in the face of such a tragedy.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?
Enterprise risk management is a fascinating field. It combines my love of problem-solving and analysis with talking to people from all areas of the university.
What do you most appreciate about URMIA?
I appreciate the URMIA community in particular. There are so many experienced professionals in URMIA that you can always find someone with experience with a situation you are facing.
What's your favorite book, movie, and/or hobby?
I’ve always loved thriller/horror movies, and my favorite is Jaws.
What is your favorite beverage and/or food?
I’m a beer and pizza guy at heart!
What do your friends and family think you do?
My family believes I’m Chandler Bing…they have no idea what I do. My friends boil it down to “Insurance Guy.”