Staff

Profiles of Our Professional Team

Eli Bjornoy, B.A., J.D. & LLM Admiralty

President/Adjuster

Eli Bjornoy is a licensed independent insurance adjuster who has worked in the marine environment since 1978. Prior to her arrival in the Pacific Northwest in 1991, she worked in close connection with the fishing industry in Canada and Norway and served as in-house legal counsel for a maritime adjusting company. She is a co-founder of The Polaris Group, Ltd., and is an active member of many key professional maritime associations.

Ms. Bjornoy is a Proctor in Admiralty. She holds a B.A. from St. Mary's University in Halifax, Canada, a J.D. from Hamline School of Law in Minnesota, and an LLM in Admiralty from the Tulane University School of Law in Lousiana. She is admitted to the practice of law in Minnesota, Washington and the Federal Courts. She can also assure professional services in Norwegian, French and German.

Ms. Bjornoy can be reached at eli@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 301.

Anissa Olson, A.A.

Vice-President & Corporate Secretary/Adjuster

Anissa Olson has worked in maritime claims adjusting since 1987. She earned a university diploma, is licensed as an independent insurance adjuster in Washington and Alaska, and is a notary public. She is a co-founder of The Polaris Group, Ltd.

Ms. Olson formerly served as president of the Puget Sound Maritime Claims Association. She holds memberships in professional associations of importance to the maritime industry and is active in community and service organizations.

Ms. Olson can be reached at anissa@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 302.

Roy L. Brown, A.A.

Adjuster

Roy Brown has extensive experience as the claims manager of a fishing company and as an independent adjuster. He graduated from the University of Louisville Southern Police Administration Program and the University of Alaska, Kodiak. He worked for 10 years in law enforcement as sergeant of an investigation unit. He holds an independent insurance adjuster’s license in Alaska and Washington and is a licensed federal airframe and power plant mechanic.

Mr. Brown has an intimate knowledge of Alaska issues and understands the challenges that impact the lives of vessel owners and claimants.

Mr. Brown can be reached at polarisak@alaska.net, (907) 297-7377.

Sonja M. Adams, B.A., J.D.

Adjuster

Ms. Adams has worked in claims handling since 1995. She earned a B.A. from the
University of Washington and a Juris Doctor from Seattle University. Licensed as an independent insurance adjuster in Washington State and Alaska and admitted to the practice of law in Washington State, she has experience on both sides of the claims process. As a law student, she worked for one year as an intern for a Seattle firm of trial attorneys. Ms. Adams is a member in good standing of the Washington State Bar Association and provides pro-bono legal services on a regular basis through the King County Bar Association’s neighborhood legal clinics, as well as for other non-profit organizations. She can also assure professional services in Norwegian.

Ms. Adams can be reached at sonjaa@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 306.

Rebecca Buchan, B.A.

Adjuster

With only a brief interruption, Rebecca (Becky) Buchan has been working in Maritime claims since 1997. She received a B.A in Office Management from Central Washington University. She is licensed as an independent insurance adjuster in Washington and Alaska.

Ms. Buchan can be reached at becky@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 307.

Daniel Copenhaver, B.S.

Adjuster Trainee

Mr. Copenhaver joined The Polaris Group, Ltd. in February 2013 as a claims adjuster trainee shortly after graduating from the University of Redlands. He earned a B.S. in Business Administration with a minor in accounting.

Mr. Copenhaver can be reached at daniel@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 304.

Carol Martinez

Office Manager and Claims Associate

Resident Associate Member, Association of Average Adjusters of the U.S.

Carol Martinez began her career in the marine insurance industry in 1974 at the firm of Marsh & McLennan, Inc. in San Francisco, California. In 1983, she became a junior member of the Association of Average Adjusters of the United States. She moved to Seattle in 1987, where she has been handling hull & machinery claims. She joined the Polaris Group, Ltd. in 2003.

Ms. Martinez can be reached at carol@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 303.

Kristina Nyhammer

Claims Associate

Kristina (Tina) Nyhammer has over 15 years of experience in the insurance industry. She worked with an insurance broker for 7 years prior to joining The Polaris Group, Ltd. as a claims associate in 1998. In addition to growing up in a family of commercial fishermen and vessel owners, Ms. Nyhammer gained practical insight into the industry while working as a processor onshore in Alaska. Ms. Nyhammer is a notary public.

Ms. Nyhammer can be reached at tina@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 308.

Kathy Tennyson

Claims Associate

Ms. Tennyson has 13 years of experience in the maritime insurance industry. She has worked both on the claims and underwriting sides of the industry. She was a licensed broker and agent, property and casualty. Her experience includes commercial hull, P&I, cargo, and yacht handling. She joined The Polaris Group, Ltd. in Spring 2012.

Ms. Tennyson can be reached at kathy@polarisgrpltd.com, (206) 378-6090, ext. 311.

Linda Brown

Claims Associate

Linda Brown has over 30 years of experience in the legal environment.  She has held positions as an administrative assistant/legal secretary for the State of Alaska Department of Law and was a senior legal assistant for an Alaska law firm for 19 years.  She joined The Polaris Group, Ltd. as a claims associate in July 2008.

Ms. Brown can be reached at lindab@alaska.net, (907) 297-7377.

Helmut Schweiger, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., J.D.

Dr. Schweiger has been assisting The Polaris Group, Ltd.’s professional team of adjusters since the firm’s inception in 1995. He has extensive experience as a university professor, as a senior administrator of large complex organizations, and in government. He is admitted to the practice of law in Washington State. He is fluent in French and German.

Dr. Schweiger can be reached at nytun@comcast.net, (206) 378-6090.