The Risk Institute
About Us

The conversation about risk starts here.

Our Mission

To advance enterprise risk management through cross-disciplinary collaboration, academic research, thought leadership and talent development.

Why The Risk Institute Matters

The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Max M. Fisher College of Business is a consortium of forward-thinking organizations and academics with a focus on risk and enterprise risk management.

Today, every facet of a company, from the board and C-suite down, is affected by risk and enterprise risk management practices.

We operate at a unique intersection of risk leaders, academic researchers, students and industry professionals across all industries and functions. With our innovative and cutting-edge approaches to risk management, the Risk Institute creates a unique forum and immersive experience for members to neutrally convene, network and engage in risk-centered conversations, ideas and strategies that they often cannot find anywhere else.

Our Founding Members




The Ohio State University

Our Team

  • Leadership & Staff


    Isil Erel headshotIsil Erel, Academic Director

    Dr. Isil Erel, David A. Rismiller Chair in Finance, holds a Ph.D. in financial economics from MIT Sloan School of Management. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and business administration from Koç University, Turkey. Her research, which has been published in top finance journals, spans a variety of areas within corporate finance, with particular emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and financial institutions.

    Isil is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)’s Corporate Finance program and a research member at the European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI). She also serves on the boards of the European Finance Association (EFA), Foundation for the Advancement of Research in Financial Economics (FARFE), the Financial Intermediation Research Society (FIRS) and the Risk Institute.

    Isil is an editor of the Review of Corporate Finance Studies and an associate editor of the Journal of Financial Intermediation. She is the 2010 recipient of Fisher’s Pace Setters Faculty Research Award, the 2015 recipient of the Distinguished Faculty Award, and 2020 recipient of the Recognition Award for significant out-of-classroom contributions at Fisher.

    Ashley Corry headshotAshley Corry, Program Coordinator 

    Ashley Corry is the Program Coordinator at The Risk Institute at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business. A versatile professional, with high attention to detail and skills across multiple communication platforms, she earned her bachelor’s degree in communication at Wittenberg University and has worked in communication consulting for nearly ten years. She earned her Master of Arts in Management from Antioch University Midwest (formerly, Antioch University McGregor) and her Master of Science in Athletic Administration from Ohio University, with a focus on risk and communication dynamics in team sports.

    At The Risk Institute, Ashley is a dedicated logistician and professional event planner supporting a variety of Risk Institute initiatives. She is committed to delivering exceptional audience experiences and elevating business performance via data-driven strategies, meaningful market insights, streamlined processes and strong cross-functional partnerships. 

    Samantha Ellwood headshotSamantha Ellwood, Associate Director

    Samantha (“Sammie”) earned her Master of Public Administration from Ohio State’s John Glenn College of Public Affairs, and her Bachelor of Arts in cultural anthropology from Ohio University’s Honors Tutorial College. Before joining the Risk Institute, she spent two years recruiting for startups in technology and life sciences. Prior to that, she spent five years at The Ohio State University as the Glenn College’s Graduate Programs Manager, where she contributed to the development of three new master’s programs while wearing many hats as a student affairs professional (recruiting, onboarding, advising, event planning). Before that, she worked at Ohio State’s College of Medicine coordinating classes for first and second-year medical students.

    Sammie brings a wide set of professional skills to the Risk Institute, including program and stakeholder development/management, strategic planning, change management and data-driven decision-making. She has a passion for relationship-building both within the university and with private, public and community partners.

  • Advisory Board

    Klaus Diem HeadshotKlaus Diem | Nationwide Insurance

    Klaus Diem is Senior Vice President - Chief Risk Officer at Nationwide Insurance. As Nationwide's Chief Risk Officer, Klaus leads the Enterprise Risk and Capital Management functions overseeing the company's approach to identifying, assessing, aggregating, and optimizing its risk profile. He is responsible for Investment Risk Management, Quantitative Modeling and Analytics, Operational Risk Management, Corporate Risk Management and Reinsurance, Catastrophe Risk Management, Risk Governance and Reporting, and Risk-Adjusted Return Optimization. 

    Klaus begun his career at Nationwide in 2005 and has served as the Director of Investments Operations, Investment Professional within Enterprise Portfolio Management where he was responsible for relationship and client management, and as Chief Financial Officer - Planning and Administration for Nationwide Investments with additional financial leadership responsibility for Nationwide Innovation.

    Most recently, Klaus was the Chief Risk Officer for Nationwide Investments. Prior to joining Nationwide, Klaus held several positions at State Street Bank in their Insurance Outsourcing practice. 

    In addition to serving as the chair of the Risk Institute Advisory Board, Klaus is an executive committee member of the North American Chief Risk Officer Council (NACRO), a group of Chief Risk Officers of the largest insurers in the United States, Canada and Bermuda where he co-chairs the Strategic Risk Committee. Klaus also serves on the Board of Directors of Catholic Social Services. 

    Klaus earned his BS in business administration from the University of Kansas. 

    mark benotti headshotMark Benotti | The Ohio State University

    In March of 2023, Mark arrived at The Ohio State University with over 30 years of experience in the areas of risk management, captive insurance, enterprise risk management, along with property and casualty insurance. Prior to joining the Office of Enterprise Risk Management at Ohio State, Mark had an expansive career leading the risk management function at large organizations including commercial and residential real estate (investment) firms; the world’s largest beer, wine, and spirits manufacturer; and a top three retail wholesale club store chain. Along with that experience and just prior to joining Ohio State, Mark led and was a Partner and Practice Leader overseeing the USI offices located in Upstate New York.  USI is the 6th largest privately held insurance and risk management broker/consultant in the United States.

    Mark received his undergraduate degree in business administration from the University of New Hampshire, a Master's in Business Administration from Babson College, and holds the designation of Associate in Risk Management. He is married and a father of three.

    Helga Houston HeadshotHelga Houston | Huntington

    Helga Houston is the Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Risk Officer at Huntington. Houston joined Huntington in September 2011 and is responsible for corporate risk management, including credit, market, compliance, operational and strategic risks. Houston has over 30 years of diversified banking experience in risk management, business development and client relationships. Prior to joining Huntington, Houston was a partner with Phoenix Global Advisors in Charlotte, N.C.

    She also held executive positions with Bank of America across multiple lines of business over 20 years. Earlier in her career, Houston held positions with Crocker National Bank and Home Federal Savings and Loan.

    Houston earned her bachelor’s degree from Westmont College and her MBA from the University of Southern California. She serves on the Advisory Board for The Risk Institute at the Ohio State University and Board of Trustees for Westmont College and The New Albany Community Foundation.

    Gary Price HeadshotGary Price | Battelle

    Gary Price was appointed Chief Risk Officer of Battelle in October 2021. Gary leads our Enterprise Risk Management process, along with providing oversight and experience in the area of risk related to major company initiatives, business pursuits and complex transactions. Gary also served as our interim Chief Information Officer from April 2022 – October 2022. Prior to joining Battelle, Gary was most recently PricewaterhouseCoopers’ (PwC) US Partner Affairs Leader and Chief Administrative Officer (since 2014). In this capacity, Gary was responsible for all partner-related matters. As a member of the US Leadership Team, Gary’s responsibilities also included executing firm strategy and aiding in the firm’s digital transformation.

    Gary joined PwC in 1983 and spent his career advising clients in both the firm’s Assurance and Advisory practices and has advised clients from across many industries and sectors, including: transportation; manufacturing; retail and consumer; financial services; and energy and utilities.

    Gary is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants. Gary received his undergraduate degree in 1983 from The Ohio State University.

    Gary and his wife Mary Ellen have four adult children and they reside in Columbus, Ohio

    Dean Anil Makhija HeadshotAnil Makhija | The Ohio State University Max M. Fisher College of Business

    Anil K. Makhija serves as dean and John W. Berry, Sr. Chair in Business of the Max M. Fisher College of Business. Makhija is recognized as an expert in the field of finance, particularly capital structure, corporate governance and valuation, and has more than 20 years of experience in academic leadership roles. Prior to his appointment to dean in October 2014, Makhija served as senior associate dean at Fisher. He has served on the faculty of the business college since 1998 and has held the Dean's Distinguished Professorship and the David A. Rismiller Professorship in Finance. He chaired Fisher's Department of Finance and served as an associate dean of executive education programs, where he was responsible for the development of Fisher's top-ranked Executive MBA program.

    Makhija has led consulting and executive development programs for dozens of leading companies in the U.S. and around the world. He has held visiting faculty appointments at respected institutions in Chile, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, Hong Kong, India and Korea.

    Makhija is a respected and widely published researcher. He is also the winner of numerous teaching awards, including the Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching and the Pace Setters Daniel Westerbeck Teaching Excellence Award — the highest teaching honors bestowed by, respectively, Ohio State and Fisher College of Business.

    Makhija has been a featured expert in media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, The New York Times, Financial Times and Bloomberg Businessweek, among many others.

    He has a PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an MBA from Tulane University, and a Bachelor of Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi.

    Bernadette A. Minton headshotBernadette A. Minton | The Ohio State University Max M. Fisher College of Business

    Professor Bernadette A. Minton is Chair of the Department of Finance and the Arthur E. Shepard Endowed Professor in Insurance at Fisher College of Business of The Ohio State University and serves as Interim Executive Director of The Risk Institute. Professor Minton holds a PhD in economics from the University of Chicago. Professor Minton’s research spans a variety of areas within corporate finance, with particular emphasis on risk management, corporate governance and banking.  Her research has been published in top finance journals such as the Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial Economics and Review of Financial Studies. 

    As a leader in her area of scholarship, Professor Minton has been recognized for both her research and her teaching impact in the classroom.  She is a recipient of the Pace Setters Faculty Research Award and Pace Setters Undergraduate Teaching Award and is a Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics Research Fellow.  

    Professor Minton is a Managing Editor of the Quarterly Journal of Finance and an Associate Editor of the Journal of Financial Services Research. 

    Professor Minton teaches risk management to Fisher undergraduate students and is actively involved in the college’s Fintech Initiative.

    Risk Institute Academic Director, Isil Erel, also sits on the Risk Institute Advisory Board. 

Contact Us

Samantha Ellwood

Associate Director, The Risk Institute 

255 Mason Hall | 250 W. Woodruff Avenue | Columbus OH, 43210

Keep in touch on LinkedIn and Twitter.