Our Leadership Team
President and Chief Executive Officer
As President and Chief Executive Officer of Western Financial Group, Kenny Nicholls oversees the strategic management across the company.
With over 25 years of experience in the financial institutions sector, Kenny spent 17 years with Desjardins prior to joining Western Financial Group in 2011. He has a wealth of experience having occupied several finance, compliance, and risk management positions, as well as executive positions in asset management, pooled and mutual funds, real estate management, securities brokerage, back office and wealth management companies.
Prior to being named to the CEO position, Kenny acted as the Chief Financial and Risk Officer at Western Financial Group from 2011-2016.
Throughout these 25 years, Kenny has had the opportunity to build high performing teams and to work with a wide spectrum of professionals. From this experience, he developed extensive knowledge around operational processes and financial performance.
Prior to joining Desjardins, Kenny spent five years as an auditor with Deloitte & Touche in Montreal specializing in financial institutions.
Kenny holds a graduate diploma in public accountancy from McGill University and a bachelor of commerce degree in accountancy from Concordia University. Along with being a CPA-CGA, Kenny is also an associate CFA member.
Chief Operating Officer
As Chief Operating Officer, Joe Sirianni oversees the corporate strategies and operating efficiencies of Western's network of insurance brokerages in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.
Joe joined Western Financial Group in February 2012 as Vice President of Business Development and was promoted to Executive Vice President, Sales in December 2012. In November 2013, he took on the role of Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Network. He assumed his current role in January 2017.
Prior to joining Western Financial Group, he spent the past 20 years at TD Bank Financial Group where he held increasingly senior roles, including National Sales Manager, TD Insurance. As a member of TD Bank Financial Group, he led various business units from large multi-location branches to regional specialized sales teams and a national sales team.
Joe is an executive with more than 20 years’ experience in the financial services industry, his expertise lies in sales management, strategy development, plan implementation and operations, change management and developing high performance teams.
Joe holds an MBA from Athabasca University and a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Calgary. He has his Canadian securities course designation from the Canadian Securities Institute and his Personal Financial Planner designation from the Institute of Canadian Bankers.
President and Chief Operating Officer
Group Insurance Solutions
As President and Chief Operating Officer for Western Financial Group Insurance Solutions, Grant Ostir is responsible for providing the strategic direction of the company’s business operations. In addition to these responsibilities, Grant is the lead contact for many of the company’s association partners.
Grant has over 20 years' experience with Western Financial Group Insurance Solutions. Prior to his role as President and Chief Operating Officer, he worked in many capacities throughout the company. In his most recent role, Grant was the Executive Vice President of sales and service where he oversaw the sales development and marketing as related to commercial and employee benefits insurance across Canada.
Grant graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Economics and has been with Western Financial Group Insurance Solutions since 1996.
Chief Financial Officer
As Western Financial Group’s Chief Financial Officer, Nancy Green leads the overall financial strategy and governance of the company. Under her management are Finance and Accounting; Business Intelligence; Facilities; Strategy and Project Management; and Risk and Compliance.
Since she joined Western in 2006, Nancy’s leadership abilities have enabled Western to increase efficiencies and support fundamental strategic initiatives leading to increased profitability.
Prior to her time with Western, Nancy spent 12 years in key financial and leadership roles with Weston Bakeries and Kraft Canada.
Nancy received her Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calgary, and holds CPA and CMA designations.
Senior Vice President
Business Systems and Technology
As Western Financial Group’s Senior Vice President of Business Systems and Technology, Doug Bennett leads all information technology support, applications development, technology, communications, and data management across the company.
He’s a veteran professional with more than 30 years’ experience working in various IT capacities. Prior to joining Western in 2005, Doug held numerous IT consulting roles and worked for Parks Canada for nine years maintaining its computer networking within Western Canada.
Senior Vice President
People and Culture
As Senior Vice President, People and Culture, Lisa Osachoff leads Western Financial Group’s Human Resources, Learning and Development, and Internal Communications teams.
Lisa has been an integral member of Western since 2012 and has held various key roles throughout her tenure with the company. Prior to her current role, Lisa led the Human Resources team and was instrumental in developing strategic career pathing, facilitating corporate succession planning, and reinforcing the Western employer brand.
Lisa has a strong background in retail sales and human resources. She combines strong business acumen with an intuitive leadership style that is key for our support teams.
Lisa holds a Bachelor or Sociology from the University of Lethbridge.
Mary Lou Charles
As Vice President Service, Mary Lou Charles leads branch integrations and customer solutions for Western Financial Group. Under her direction are the centralized processing teams, the broker management system, and process improvements.
Mary Lou joined Western through the acquisition of Whillis Harding Agencies in 1998 where she occupied the position of Vice President of Insurance. Recently celebrating 25 years with Western, Mary Lou has held several key positions within the company and was instrumental in transitioning to our current broker management system, establishing standardized workflows, and developing a centralized team creating efficiency.
With more than 30 years in the industry, Mary Lou holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of British Columbia and is a Fellow, Chartered Insurance Professional.