Medders named Freeman Distinguished Professor of Insurance

Dr. Lorilee A. Medders has been named the Joseph F. Freeman Distinguished Professor of Insurance in the Walker College of Business at Appalachian State University.

Medders will join the faculty at Appalachian and assume the role of Freeman Professor at the start of the 2017-18 academic year.

Medders serves as director of the Florida Catastrophic Storm Risk Management Center and as a professor of risk management and insurance within the College of Business at Florida State University. Prior to joining the Storm Center, Medders taught risk management and insurance at Georgia State University and Georgia Southern University.

The professorship was established by the Freeman family and friends and the insurance industry in memorial of the late Joseph (Joe) F. Freeman III. Joe's father, Joseph F. Freeman Jr., is a retired insurance agent and a member emeritus of the Walker College of Business Advisory Council and the Appalachian State University Foundation Board of Directors.

The Freeman Professorship was previously held by insurance professor Dave Wood from its creation in 1995 until 2016. 

“I am delighted that Dr. Medders will serve as our next Freeman Professor of Insurance,” said Dr. Heather Norris, dean of the Walker College of Business. “She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in academia and practice that will make an immediate impact on our already outstanding insurance program.”

David Marlett, Managing Director of the Brantley Risk and Insurance Center, chaired the search.

“Dr. Medders is a perfect fit for our college,” said Marlett. “She excels in the classroom and has a long history of engagement with the business community, legislators and regulators.” 

“This is a particularly exciting time in insurance – an era of great challenge and opportunity,” said Medders. Appalachian’s risk and insurance faculty are well known nationwide for preparing students to succeed in what has become a highly dynamic business environment. I am excited to join the Appalachian family and contribute to bridging Appalachian’s students with their futures in the risk and insurance field.”

Medders has keen interests in risk modeling, business risk management, global risk challenges, catastrophe risk finance, economic resilience, reputational/crisis risk management and business ethics. She is chair of the Florida Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology, a commission on which she has served by appointment from the State of Florida CFO, as a member of the Boards of Directors for the American Association of Water Distribution and Management, and as president of the Southern Risk and Insurance Association.

Medders earned a Bachelor of Science in Commerce and Business from The University of Alabama and a Ph.D. in Business Administration – Risk and Insurance from Georgia State University.

Appalachian’s Risk Management and Insurance Program is the fifth largest in the country. The college’s Brantley Risk and Insurance Center, founded in 1988 with support from the Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina, supports research and faculty development, assists the insurance industry in the design and delivery of training and continuing education programs, and facilitates interaction between students, faculty and the professionals in the insurance industry. For more information about the center, visit

Medders named Freeman Distinguished Professor of Insurance at Appalachian State University
Published: Mar 8, 2017 2:57pm