Eckler announces new Principal appointments

As Canada’s leading independently owned actuarial and consulting firm, Eckler is managed by its active principals across Canada and the Caribbean. We are pleased to announce our most recent Principal appointments in all three consulting practices: pension and benefits, life insurance, and property and casualty insurance.

Pension and Benefits

Photo of Eckler Principal August Cruikshanks.August Cruikshanks

With Eckler since 2011, August leads the investment manager research team. With over 20-years of experience on both the consulting and plan sponsor sides, August is known throughout the industry for his research expertise and experience. His areas of expertise include manager selection and assessment, trustee education, and application of asset allocation theory.

In addition to his role in manager research, August consults to some of Eckler’s most sophisticated clients and is frequently brought in to provide subject matter expertise on manager due diligence projects.

August has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, an MBA from Thunderbird School of Management at the University of Arizona and is a CFA charterholder. August is an active volunteer with the Investment Committee for the Salvation Army in Canada.

Photo of Eckler Principal Theresa TranTheresa Tran

Based in our Toronto office, Theresa joined Eckler’s Health and Group Benefits consulting practice in 2018. She has over 20 years of industry experience and supports plan sponsors across all geographies – both in the public and private sector.

Her expertise includes benefit design and strategy, benchmarking, administration, marketings, renewals, flex pricing and financing/ funding solutions. Theresa has also worked with other large global consulting firms during her tenure in the industry and has been involved in global benefits strategies and harmonization of programs in mergers and acquisitions.

She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Western Ontario.  She is also a Certified Employee Benefits Specialist (CEBS) and licensed life insurance agent.

Shawn WilcoxPhoto of Eckler Principal Shawn Wilcox

Shawn has over 25 years of pension consulting experience, with more than 20 of those years at Eckler. Shawn has a deep expertise in pension plan design, legislative compliance, funding and financial reporting, plan administration and governance.

Known for his exceptional attention to detail and outstanding technical competence, his advice is frequently sought after by clients and colleagues alike when new legislation or regulations are released. Shawn also provides oversight and support to Eckler’s research team.

Shawn graduated with honours in actuarial science from the University of Western Ontario and is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and Canadian Institute of Actuaries. 

Life Insurance 

Photo of Eckler Principal Kim TranKim Tran

With Eckler since 1992, Kim started her consulting career right out of university. Having consulted to the financial services industry in both Canada and the Caribbean for nearly 30 years, she has extensive actuarial experience and expertise.

Kim specializes in financial reporting, dynamic capital adequacy testing, financial condition testing, profitability testing and product pricing for all traditional and non-traditional life, health and disability products. She has also been involved in various projects in Canada, the Caribbean and Hong Kong including mergers and acquisitions, product pricing and development support for ingenius™, Eckler’s proprietary illustration and policy records system for life insurers. Kim has developed deep expertise in actuarial valuation, projection and pricing software.

Kim graduated from the University of Waterloo with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics majoring in actuarial sciences and statistics. She is an Associate of both the Society of Actuaries and the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.

Phillip CoutoPhoto of Eckler Principal Phillip Couto

Phillip joined Eckler in 2013 and since then has played a pivotal role helping to develop and manage the deployment of Eckler’s proprietary cloud applications: ingenius™, espace™, and foreward®. He also works collaboratively across the firm to develop and deploy specialized services for clients in other practice groups.

Some of Phillip’s key specialties are web and application development, database development and administration, deployments of high availability solutions for Web applications and services, developing tools for Business Intelligence (reporting) and automated management and monitoring of applications.

Phillip graduated from Sheridan College with a diploma in Computer Systems Technology – Systems Analyst Program.

Property and Casualty Insurance 

Photo of Eckler Principal Bertha PilgrimBertha Pilgrim

While based in Eckler’s Barbados office, Bertha is officially a member of the Toronto property and casualty insurance practice. She joined Eckler in 2012 after spending 15+ years working for a large international actuarial consulting firm, as the Chief Actuary of a large international reinsurer and as an independent actuarial consultant.

Seen as a regional expert by insurers, Bertha is responsible for a large roster of the firm’s Caribbean P&C clients and plays an integral role in business development activities as well.

A Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, Bertha graduated from the London School of Economics and Political Science, with a bachelor’s degree in Actuarial Science with First Class Honours. She also holds a master’s degree in Applied Statistics from Oxford University, England.


We congratulate August, Theresa, Shawn, Kim, Phillip and Bertha on their appointments. We know they will help grow our business and continue to deliver the superior results our clients have come to expect.