Brenda Powell Wells, Ph.D., CPCU, AAI, CRIS, CICS

Brenda Wells

Chair, Department of Finance & Insurance
Robert F. Bird Distinguished Professor of Risk Management and Insurance
Director, Risk Management & Insurance Program
Department of Finance & Insurance
College of Business
East Carolina University
3417 Bate Building
Greenville, NC  27858-4353

Brenda Powell Wells holds both a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Ph.D. in Risk Management and Insurance from the University of Georgia.  She holds the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), Accredited Advisor of Insurance (AAI) and Construction Risk Insurance Specialist (CRIS) designations.  She also holds a graduate certificate in Business Analytics from East Carolina University, as well as the Cannabis Insurance Coverage Specialist (CICS) designation.

Brenda has spent over 37 years studying and teaching risk management and insurance.  In 2009 she was hired to build a new risk management and insurance program at East Carolina University (ECU).  She presently serves as the director of that program and is the Robert F. Bird Distinguished Professor of Risk Management and Insurance.  She is also the chairperson of the Department of Finance and Insurance, beginning July 1, 2022.

Brenda is a private consultant to the insurance and risk management industry.  A sought-after public speaker, Brenda can educate and entertain groups of all sizes and backgrounds.  She has served as an expert witness and consultant on several court cases.  Her consulting firm—Risk Education Strategies–offers agency management consulting, custom seminar delivery, preparation of expert opinions and testimony, continuing education course delivery, agency valuation, risk management audits.  Brenda’s expertise is in property-casualty insurance, and she also has experience in life insurance twisting/churning cases.

During her career she has taught a variety of classes including Principles of Insurance, Risk Management, Commercial Liability Insurance, Commercial Property Insurance, Insurance Company operations, Employee Benefits and Retirement Planning, and Advanced Topics in Risk and Insurance.  She has supervised countless internships and independent study projects.  She is also the faculty advisor to ECU’s Gamma Iota Sigma – Beta Theta Chapter.  Brenda has a long history of forming, supporting, and mentoring student organizations and has a wide range of experience in public relations and fundraising.  She is the founder of the Texas Risk and Insurance Professional Society (TRIPS), a non-profit entity that supports insurance education.  She has a career fundraising total of well-over $3 million.

Brenda has published numerous articles in Journal of Risk and InsuranceJournal of Insurance Regulation, Journal of Insurance Issues, Journal of Services Marketing, Small Business Institute Journal, Journal of Applied Business Research, Journal of Applied Risk Management and Insurance and Journal of Risk Education.  Her current research interests are varied.  They include marijuana legalization and the insurance industry, diminished value in automobile insurance, and insurance education.  Her publication in Journal of Insurance Issues on marijuana legalization and its impact on property-casualty insurance is considered the seminal paper in this field.

Brenda is a member of the American Risk and Insurance Association (ARIA), Western Risk and Insurance Association (WRIA) and the Southern Risk and Insurance Association (SRIA).  She is a past-president of SRIA and WRIA. She is a Professional member of the American Association of Insurance Management Consultants (AAIMCo).

In her spare time, Brenda is an accomplished painter, specializing in pet portraits.  She is very pleased and humbled to have been able to take art classes at ECU’s School of Art & Design, and hopes to take more of them sometime in the future.

Many years ago, Brenda was an amateur stand-up comic.  She performed at Addison Improv in Dallas, Texas, and at Hyena’s Comedy Club in Arlington.  She won the “Bodacious Crowd Pleaser” award at the Blue Night of the Stars Talent Show at University of North Texas.  Brenda resides in Chocowinity, NC, with her fabulous rescue dog, Tito. “Rescued” is Brenda’s all-time favorite breed!