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Volume 67, July 2013

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Mississippi Insurance Alliance Celebrates 10th Anniversary

July 19th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Mississippi Insurance Alliance (MIA) of Jackson, MS as an SIAA Master Agency.

According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With a decade of successful growth, Mississippi Insurance Alliance has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for over 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

"Our alliance is designed to help insurance agents at all stages." said MIA Manager Ladd Bratcher. "Our retail agency, The Insurance Mart, is celebrating their 50th anniversary next year. Sharing that agency development expertise as an SIAA Master Agency was a natural extension of our tradition. Our members gain access to competitive insurance companies, the opportunity to earn profit sharing, and avail themselves of vendor discounts and marketing tools."

Mississippi Insurance Alliance continues to grow by working "from the inside out" with its members to help them maximize their efforts. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 2003. With a territory spanning the entire state of Mississippi, they are one of the most significant independent agency groups in the region. For more information about Mississippi Insurance Alliance, please visit http://www.msinsalliance.com.

The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,500 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


Brownyard Group Introduces Revamped Website

Site redesign provides a better user experience for customers and agency partners

Bay Shore, N.Y. - July 22, 2013 - Brownyard Group is pleased to announce the launch of their redesigned website (www.brownyard.com). The specialty program administrator has refreshed the design and content of their site to make it more accessible for all users, from current and prospective insureds to agents and industry partners.

The intuitive interface and easy navigation, as well as the updated program information and visuals deliver an enhanced user experience. These features will assist agents in evaluating products for their clients and in accessing the library of customizable marketing materials.

Though its look has changed, the web address remains the same - visit www.brownyard.com to view the new site.

About Brownyard Group
Brownyard Group is a program administrator that has developed and provided specialized insurance programs for select industries for more than 60 years. These industries include security guards, pest control operators, cosmetics manufacturers, alarm systems, private investigators and security consultants and the beauty industry. In 1993, Brownyard established Brownyard Claims Management, a loss prevention and full-service insurance claims facility. The company is based in Bay Shore, N.Y.


SIAA Grows by 25 Agencies in June 2013

July 16th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 25 new member agencies during the month of June.

"We are excited to be able to grow at a steady and aggressive pace." said Jim Masiello, SIAA's CEO. "432 new Member Agencies joined our ranks in 2012. That was our 4th consecutive year with over 400 members signed, and we are on pace for another record-breaking year in 2013. Established small to mid-sized agencies as well as captive agents looking to break free and open their own independent agency continue to recognize the value of access to major reputable carriers and the agency development resources that SIAA membership provides. Over the past thirty years we have developed a model that works regardless of the economic climate, signing over 4500 members along the way."

Masiello went on to say, "Agencies that see value in development & education, access to program and specialty markets, marketing assistance (including lead generation), automation discounts, and more recognize SIAA as the total solution to the challenge of agency success. We've spent three decades getting it right and our new member agencies reap the benefits."

SIAA members created more than $700 million in new premium growth in 2012.

June's new members include:

East:
Canopy Insurance of Charlottesville, VA

Midwest:
Grand Slam Insurance Agency of Fargo, ND
M&M Insurance Associates of Omaha, NE
BBNS Endurance Corporation of Cadillac, MI
Redburn of Big Rapids, MI
The Lenar Group of Saginaw, MI
Chris Zunich Insurance Agency of Reynoldsburg, OH
Michael Anthony Agency of Houghton Lake, MI
Brooks Fleetwood Insurance Group of Alton, IL
The Insurance House of Marion, IL
Mike Watterson Enterprises of Holden, MO
Concentric Insurance of West Des Moines, IA

West:
Viva Insurance Agency of Pasadena, CA
Universal 1st Financial Group of Glendale, CA
Invisible Insurance Solutions of Irvine, CA
PCI Conrad of Conrad, MT
Serve-Link Insurance of San Marino, CA
Idaho Insurance Agency of Boise, ID
Vista West Insurance Services of Oxnard, CA
Meslee Insurance Services of Los Angeles, CA
Theo Insurance Services of Los Angeles, CA
Jun Ng of San Francisco, CA

Southeast:
Insure-Florida Associates of Lake Worth, FL
The Insurance Store of Radcliff, KY

South Central:
Gooszen & Associates Insurance of Oklahoma City, OK

SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

The National Insurance Agency Alliance
For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


Steven J. England joins Global Special Risks (GSR) as President and CEO

July 15, 2013, HOUSTON, TX -- Global Special Risks, LLC (GSR), part of Ryan Specialty Group, LLC, announced today that Steven J. England has joined GSR as President and CEO. England was formerly Executive Vice President - US Field Operations for Ironshore US, where he was instrumental in developing Ironshore's Property and Specialty Casualty business in the US.

Global Special Risks was formed in 1979 as a London Market Coverholder (a Managing General Agency for Lloyd's and London Companies). GSR provides insurance and risk management services to energy, marine, cargo and special risks. Currently, GSR has offices in four major energy centers: Houston, New Orleans, Dallas, and Calgary.

Frederick C. Burns, Jr. will assume the newly created role of Chief Underwriting Officer (CUO) and will work closely with Steve England to help grow and expand GSR both domestically and internationally.

About Ryan Specialty Group, LLC (RSG) and Global Specialty Risks, LLC (GSR)
Ryan Specialty Group, LLC is a global holding company which includes Global Specialty Risks, LLC (GSR) and other highly-specialized underwriting companies, a Lloyd's insurer and specialty services designed specifically for agents, brokers and insurers. www.ryansg.com and www.globalspecialrisks.com.

For more information on this release, contact Chelsey Krull, (312) 784-6043, ckrull@ryansg.com.


Ultra Risk Advisors

Mark Walker Promoted to Vice President

Bellevue, Wash. – July 9, 2013 – Chris Randall, President and CEO of Ultra Risk Advisors (formerly NSU Healthcare), announced today that Mark Walker has been promoted to the position of vice president. “It’s a pleasure to see our people grow with our organization. Mark has done an outstanding job as a producer in building a nice book of business from an impressive network of retail broker customers,” said Randall. “Most recently he has taken a leadership role in growing our imaging and non-standard physicians programs.” In his role as vice president, Walker will lead sales efforts for specialized healthcare programs in the Eastern and Southern regions of the U.S.

Walker joined Ultra in 2008 when it was known as the Healthcare Division of National Specialty Underwriters, Inc. Based in Atlanta, he has been in the insurance industry for more than 20 years. A graduate of the University of Central Florida, Walker began his career as an underwriting trainee with the St Paul Companies and went on to work for Western Indemnity and MMI Companies.

About Ultra Risk Advisors:
Ultra Risk Advisors (Formerly NSU Healthcare) is a privately held commercial insurance program administrator and specialty wholesale broker based in Bellevue, Wash. The company also has offices in Chicago and Atlanta. Ultra specializes in professional and general liability insurance in the healthcare field. For more information, visit www.ultrariskadvisors.com.


NBIS ADDS INDUSTRY LEADER ARTHUR KIRKNER AS VICE PRESIDENT OF CLAIMS

NBIS Successfully Implementing Growth Strategy as New Market Segments Remain Key

Atlanta, July 8th, 2013: NationsBuilders Insurance Services, Inc., the industry leader in specialty construction insurance and a portfolio company of SunTx Capital Partners, is pleased to welcome Arthur “Art” P Kirkner to the Company, where he will assume the position of Vice President, Claims.

In his leadership role, Art will be responsible for auditing claim files to ensure that claims handling comply with processes, procedures and contracts. He will manage the commercial and residential claims teams to ensure that claims are responded to per DOI guidelines, maintain compliance and address non-compliance issues. Art will also develop strategy for the claims function, provide coaching/training and.ad guidance in claims handling while auditing files for compliance with payments for the litigation and claims management guidelines, along with review, identify and implement improvements to claim procedures and policies as needed. He will work on special projects and provide assessments through claims reviews and reports analysis.

Art joins NBIS from Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, where he was VP, Claims Field Services, responsible for delivering prompt, efficient and high-quality claims services to ensure high level of customer satisfaction and retention. He streamlined processes achieving a 10.6% increase in employee productivity, as measured by claims handled per person. He also achieved an 8% decrease in operating budget along with reducing the legal and allocated expense by 35% over a 3-year span. As a claims executive, he was responsible for the leadership and effective management of all aspects of the claims organization, along with timely and realistic recognition of loss and expense reserves and the accurate and prompt disposition of claims. Art holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Temple University and comes to NBIS with over 30 years of claims experience.

“We are confident Art will be an excellent addition to NBIS”, said Bill Tepe, President of NBIS. “Art comes with the high level of claims experience and management skills needed to support our organization’s objectives.”

Art will be located at the NBIS headquarters, Atlanta, GA and can be reached at akirkner@nbis.com.


McGowan Purchases Assets of Professional Risk Placements, LLC

To Our Brokers:

We are excited to announce that The McGowan Companies (McGowan) has purchased the assets of Professional Risk Placements, LLC (PRP). Effective immediately, PRP will begin operating under the newly formed "McGowan Risk Specialists" (MRS) brand.

Established in 1996, PRP has become one of New Jersey's Pre-Eminent Professional Liability Specialists. Professional Risk Placements, LLC is duly licensed to do business in NJ, NY, PA, and CT, with requisite Surplus Lines license(s) in NJ, NY, and PA. "Professional Risk Placements fits exceptionally well with McGowan's growth strategy in the Northeast", states Thomas B. McGowan, IV, President of The McGowan Companies. "We are very excited about the future having these well-respected insurance veterans and their staff as part of the McGowan team."

The "McGowan Risk Specialists" brand will be a facility dedicated to Professional Liability and Special Risks. This operation will be headed by Peter Wilkens, as its President. Wilkens commented, "We are very pleased to announce this transaction with Thom and his team. The McGowan Companies is a fine organization with technological capabilities and insurance expertise that will further enhance the high quality service PRP has been providing to its agents for decades. Our future together is very bright".

All PRP brokers will receive automatic appointments with McGowan and its full range of products and capabilities. Further, all McGowan brokers will now have access to all of PRP's product offerings.

Please note:

  • Your contacts will not change.
  • Your current commission structure will remain in place.

    Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. Cordially,

    Thomas B. McGowan, IV Peter Wilkens
    President & Chief Executive Officer President
    The McGowan Companies - Home Office 4 Hendrickson Ave, Suite 1
    20595 Lorain Road Red Bank, New Jersey 07701
    Fairview Park, OH 44126 P: 732.450.9730
    P: 800.545.1538 (x3609) pwilkens@prpins.com
    t4@mcgowanins.com


    Liberty International Underwriters Expands Environmental Presence In Southwest

    NEW YORK – Liberty International Underwriters® (LIU), part of the Global Specialty division of Liberty Mutual Insurance, has expanded its environmental impairment liability (EIL) operation with a regional presence, headed by underwriting manager Mike Padula, located in LIU’s Houston office.

    Leveraging his local presence to focus on regional trends, develop new opportunities and expand LIU’s producer base, Mr. Padula delivers an enhanced level of support to the Southwest market.

    “Our product is the people and the experience behind the policy,” said William McElroy, senior vice president of Environmental Liability for Liberty International Underwriters. “LIU always strives to provide the best service, coupled with the broadest expertise. Our brokers value this and many choose LIU because of our responsive methods.”

    Mr. Padula, along with the rest of LIU’s Environmental group, has a deep understanding of local and national environmental regulations and can work with agents and brokers to evaluate a company’s potential liabilities, helping them proactively protect their assets.

    “Environmental incidents often come with unexpected risks and many companies do not realize until it is too late that they have environmental exposure,” said Mr. Padula. “Many pollution events are not covered by a Commercial General Liability Policy, and there may be unforeseen gaps in insurance coverage that leave a company paying out-of-pocket for an environmental claim. LIU has the knowledge and experience to help agents and brokers protect their clients’ businesses.”

    LIU’s entire suite of Environmental Liability products – fixed site pollution legal liability, contractors pollution liability, storage tank third-party liability, contractors and professional services, and corrective action and cleanup – will be supported by this expanded presence as well as by LIU’s existing EIL operations in New York, Boston, San Francisco, and Denver.

    Agents and brokers can contact Mr. Padula at 713-470-5833 or Michael.Padula@libertyiu.com.

    About Liberty Mutual Insurance
    "Helping people live safer, more secure lives" since 1912, Boston-based Liberty Mutual Insurance is a diversified global insurer and the third largest property and casualty insurer in the U.S. based on 2012 direct premiums written as reported by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

    Liberty Mutual Insurance also ranks 81st on the Fortune 100 list of largest corporations in the U.S. based on 2012 revenue. As of December 31, 2012, Liberty Mutual Insurance had $120.1billion in consolidated assets, $101.5 billion in consolidated liabilities, and $36.9 billion in annual consolidated revenue.

    Liberty Mutual Insurance offers a wide range of insurance products and services, including personal automobile, homeowners, workers compensation, property, commercial automobile, general liability, global specialty, group disability, reinsurance and surety. Liberty Mutual Insurance (www.libertymutualinsurance.com) employs over 50,000 people in more than 900 offices throughout the world.


    Susquehanna Agents Alliance Celebrates 10th Anniversary

    June 18, 2013 - Hampton, NH: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Susquehanna Agents Alliance (SAA) of York, PA as an SIAA Master Agency.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With a decade of successful growth, Susquehanna Agents Alliance has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for over 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    "Our alliance is designed to help insurance agents at all stages." said SAA Manager Paul Brady. "Our retail agency, Glatfelter Insurance Group, is one of the top 25 privately-owned insurance brokerages in the US and has been servicing the region for over 60 years. Sharing that agency development expertise as an SIAA Master Agency was a natural extension of our tradition of service founded on trust. Our members gain access to competitive insurance companies, the opportunity to earn profit sharing, and avail themselves of vendor discounts and marketing tools."

    Susquehanna Agents Alliance continues to grow by working "from the inside out" with its members to help them maximize their efforts. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 2003. With a 21-county territory spanning Southern Pennsylvania, they are one of the most significant independent agency groups in the region. For more information about Susquehanna Agents Alliance, please visit http://www.tga-ins.com/saa.asp .

    The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,500 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Philadelphia Insurance Presents Racing Wheelchair to Challenged Athlete

    PHLY funds CAF grant to provide 12-year-old with custom-built racing wheelchair

    Bala Cynwyd, PA, June 10, 2013 – Like many other 12-year-olds, Miguel Jimenez-Vergara enjoys playing sports, but he is missing two things most 12-year-old athletes have: his legs. Miguel was born in Columbia, without legs due to a congenital birth defect. Currently living in Ewing, New Jersey with his family, Miguel has been actively involved with the North Jersey Navigators Paralympic Sport Club for the past 6 years. In July 2012, he won 14 gold and two silver medals at the National Junior Disability Championships, however he realized he would need a top-end racing wheelchair to continue competing at a top level and to compete at the 2013 Jr. National Championships this July.

    “Wheelchair sports are great and they make me feel like a regular kid. I love to compete and I love to win,” shares Miguel.

    Thanks to a Challenged Athletes Foundation® (CAF) grant funded by Philadelphia Insurance Companies (PHLY), Miguel received a custom-built racing wheelchair. The cost/value of the EagleSports Soaring Racing Wheelchair is approximately $3,500, an expense most health insurance providers don’t cover for disabled athletes. The Challenged Athletes Foundation is a unique non-profit organization that provides support to people with permanent physical disabilities so they can live active and healthy lifestyles.

    “Participating in wheelchair sports is the best thing that ever happened to me. I could play sports and compete just like everyone else,” said Miguel.

    “Sponsors like Philadelphia Insurance Companies are crucial in providing the funding needed by athletes like Miguel to overcome obstacles and pursue their athletic dreams,” said Virginia Tinley, CAF’s Executive Director. “We are beyond thankful for PHLY’s support.”

    Miguel was presented with his new racing wheelchair in the TEAMPHLY Health and Wellness Center, joined by his family, as well as representatives from CAF and PHLY. Following the presentation, PHLY employees participated in a spin class fundraiser for CAF, kicking off a series of exercise fundraisers to be held in the Company’s gym throughout the month of June. PHLY has already raised more than $230,000 for CAF since 2008.

    “Commitment to a healthy and active lifestyle is important to PHLY,” said Jamie Maguire, Chairman of Philadelphia Insurance Companies. “We are proud to support the Challenged Athletes Foundation to help athletes like Miguel stay active and achieve their goals.”

    Miguel has a long-term goal to compete in the International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports (IWAS) World Junior Games and the Paralympics. You can watch a video of Miguel receiving his custom racing wheelchair at www.youtube.com/phlyins.

    About Philadelphia Insurance
    Philadelphia Insurance Companies designs, markets, and underwrites commercial property/casualty and professional liability insurance products incorporating value added coverages and services for select industries. In operation since 1962, the Company, whose commercial lines insurance subsidiaries are rated “A++” (Superior) by A.M. Best Company and “A+” for counterparty credit and financial strength by Standard & Poor’s, is nationally recognized as a member of Ward's Top 50, National Underwriter’s Top 100, and one of the Top 150 Workplaces in America by Workplace Dynamics. The organization has 45 offices strategically located across the United States to provide superior service. For more information, please visit www.PHLY.com.

    About Challenged Athletes Foundation
    The Challenged Athletes Foundation® (CAF) is a world leader in helping individuals with physical challenges get involved – and stay involved – in sports. CAF believes that participation in sports at any level increases self-esteem, encourages independence and enhances quality of life. Since 1994, close to $47 million has been raised and more than 8,200 funding requests from challenged athletes in all 50 states and dozens of countries have been satisfied. Additionally, CAF’s outreach efforts reach another 60,000 individuals each year. Whether it’s a $2,500 grant for a handcycle, helping underwrite a carbon fiber running foot not covered by insurance, or arranging enthusiastic encouragement from a mentor who has triumphed over a similar challenge, CAF’s mission is clear: give those with the desire to live active, athletic lifestyles every opportunity to compete in the sports they love. To learn more, log on to www.challengedathletes.org or call 858-866-0959.


    SIAA Grows by 30 Agencies in May 2013

    May 29th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 30 new member agencies during the month of May, bringing the total of the past two months to 70.

    "We are excited to be able to grow at a steady and aggressive pace." said Jim Masiello, SIAA's CEO. "432 new Member Agencies joined our ranks in 2012. That was our 4th consecutive year with over 400 members signed, and we are on pace for another record-breaking year in 2013. Established small to mid-sized agencies as well as captive agents looking to break free and open their own independent agency continue to recognize the value of access to major reputable carriers and the agency development resources that SIAA membership provides. Over the past thirty years we have developed a model that works regardless of the economic climate, signing over 4500 members along the way."

    Masiello went on to say, "Agencies that see value in development & education, access to program and specialty markets, marketing assistance (including lead generation), automation discounts, and more recognize SIAA as the total solution to the challenge of agency success. We've spent three decades getting it right and our new member agencies reap the benefits."

    SIAA members created more than $700 million in new premium growth in 2012.

    May's new members include:

    East:
    Legacy IFS of Willow Grove, PA
    Olde Liberty Insurance of East Hartford, CT
    Love Insurance Agency of Hurricane, WV
    Armor Group of Saratoga Springs, NY
    S.I. Agency of Woodbourne, NY

    Midwest:
    Alliance Insurance & Financial Services of Omro, WI
    Zohos Insurance of Mayfield Heights, OH
    Marco Miller Insurance Agency of Columbus, OH
    Virgin Financial Group of Columbus, OH
    West Suburban Assurance of Aurora, IL
    D.K. Insurance of Anderson, IN
    Global Insurance of Northbrook, IL
    Helenske Insurance Agency of Fessenden, ND
    Empire Park Insurance Agency of Omaha, NE

    West:
    Clear Lakes Agency of Buhl, ID
    MEB Insurance Services of Greely, CO
    Adam Hansen Insurance of San Clemente, CA
    Valley Center Insurance Agency of Valley Center, CA
    Kitty L. Johnson Insurance Agency of Keizer, OR
    Nevada Insurance Solutions of Las Vegas, NV

    Southeast:
    Hartsfield Insurance of Lawrenceburg, TN
    Farrar Lynch Insurance Agency of Clinton, TN
    My Community Insurance of Winchester, KY
    MJC Insurance Group of Nashville, TN
    Holtzmann Insurance Agency of Louisville, KY
    Taylor Made Insurance Group of Lexington, KY
    1st United Insurance Services of Lilburn, GA
    Eton Bridge Insurance and Financial Solutions of Orlando, FL

    South Central:
    Bean Insurance Agency of Austin, TX
    Edward E. DeMars & Associates of Fort Worth, TX

    SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance
    For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


    TMPAA Announces 2013 “Program Marketing Campaign” Award Winners

    Three Member Agencies Score Highest in Competition Co-Sponsored by the IMCA

    Wilmington, DE — The Target Markets Program Administrators Association (TMPAA) announced at their Mid Year Meeting in Baltimore that 20 entries were received for the third annual marketing campaign competition. TMPAA’s co-sponsor, the Insurance Marketing & Communications Association (IMCA) has sponsored its own marketing and communications “Showcase Awards” for 55 years. IMCA provided a panel of independent judges that reviewed all TMPAA member entries for both creative design and marketplace impact.

    The winning member agencies were Venture Insurance Programs from West Chester, PA, K&B Underwriters from Reston, VA and MiniCo Insurance Agency from Phoenix, AZ. Venture’s entry was for its “Suite Life” campaign in support of its hospitality program. K&B Underwriters’ entry featured its multi-media campaign in support of its “DigniCARE” senior living facilities program. And MiniCo’s entry was the launch of its new “Family of Products” campaign featuring a branded icon supporting four of its specialty insurance programs. All three Award of Excellence winners supported their entries with impressive marketplace metrics that achieved desired upfront marketing objectives.

    David Springer, TMPAA President, presented the winning award plaques at the recent Mid Year Meeting. The semi-annual association meeting attracted 600 agency, carrier and vendor members. Springer commented, “The TMPAA was thrilled to continue the creative competition in partnership with IMCA. We hope to have even more entries in 2014.”

    Additionally, Springer announced that two other member agencies were named runners up in this year’s competition – GMI Insurance from Valley Forge, PA and Willis Programs of Portsmouth, NH.

    The Association’s recent Mid Year Meeting was held in Baltimore, MD, May 6-9. Complete details of this event are now on the TMPAA website. The 13th Annual TMPAA Summit is scheduled for October 21-23 in Scottsdale, AZ.

    Program Administrators / MGA’s interested in learning more about the TMPAA and the Program Marketing Awards can visit the Association website at www.targetmarkets.com, or contact Ray Scotto, Executive Director, at (877) 347-5700 or ray.scotto@targetmkts.com.


    Safeco Insurance recognizes BB&T-Oswald Trippe and Company for excellent performance

    FORT MYERS, Fla. (June 3, 2013) - Safeco Insurance has recognized BB&T-Oswald Trippe and Company with a Premier Partner Award for performance and partnership. Fewer than 10 percent of independent insurance companies who sold Safeco personal lines products in 2012 received this distinguished honor.

    "Inclusion in the Safeco Premier Partner Program is reserved for only our very best agencies," said Matthew Nickerson, president of Safeco Insurance. "The commitment and high achievement of these top performers have earned them access to special resources and programs that support their ability to better serve their customers and grow their agencies."

    "We are honored to be recognized as a Safeco Premier Partner," said Jerry Elliott, BB&T Insurance Services's Personal Lines Insurance vice president of sales. "We make it a priority at BB&T-OTC to deliver superior-quality service and the trusted advice that our customers want."

    BB&T-Oswald Trippe and Company provides comprehensive insurance and risk-management services to families and businesses throughout Florida. The agency offers protection from the nation's leading insurance companies. BB&T-Oswald Trippe and Company has offices in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Holmes Beach, Miami, Naples, Ocala and Weston, Fla.

    BB&T Insurance Services, the sixth largest insurance broker in the U.S. and the eighth largest internationally, is a wholly owned subsidiary of BB&T. Founded in 1922, it operates more than 100 insurance agencies in Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Florida and California. Visit http://Insurance.BBT.com/ to learn more. BB&T Insurance Services is a wholly owned subsidiary of Branch Banking & Trust Company.

    In business since 1923 and based in Seattle, Safeco sells insurance to drivers and homeowners through a network of independent agents throughout the United States.

    Safeco is a Liberty Mutual Insurance company. Liberty Mutual ranks 84th on the Fortune 100 list of the largest U.S. corporations based on 2011 revenue. The company has financial strength ratings of A (Excellent) from the A.M. Best Company, A2 (Good) from Moody's Investors Service and A- (Strong) from Standard & Poor's.

    For more information about Safeco Insurance, visit www.Safeco.com.


    SAN Business Meeting 2013 Celebrates 30th Anniversary

    May 28, 2013 - Satellite Agency Network Group, Inc. (SAN) celebrated its 30th anniversary at SAN Business Meeting 2013 on Tuesday, April 30 at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA. The annual conference included Space Shuttle Commander Rick Searfoss, a trade show, workshops for member attendees, awards for excellence, anniversary recognition, a networking reception, and check distribution. More than 500 insurance industry professionals across eight states attended the event.

    "This event, our 30th, brings together all the professional organizations and individuals that do business with SAN to network, gather new opportunities, share experiences, and applaud hard work and success. We thank our members for their business, support, and participation. A special thank you goes to our sponsors for supporting this major event as well as working with us to deepen relationships that create mutual achievement," expressed Matt Masiello, SAN President and COO.

    To highlight SAN's longevity, the company presented a featured speaker to address the group. Searfoss, astronaut, top gun pilot, and entrepreneur, shared his experiences on "Overcoming Adversity" and developing key strategies to focus on business success and growth in challenging times. Awareness, adaptation, and leadership themes permeated his message.

    SAN's trade show presented 56 booths staffed by a variety of sponsors including Liberty Mutual, The Hartford, Travelers, Safeco Insurance, MetLife, Guard, Tower Group, The Concord Group, Arbella, Encompass, Harylesville/Nationwide Financial, and Capital Premium Financing.

    The day incorporated four industry related workshops: Agency Sales Seminar with Mark Bohac-MetLife National Account Representative, SAN Agency Support Panel-We Can Help You Grow! with SAN executive staff members, Profitable Growth through Agency Management with John Fear of Premier Business Consulting, and SAN Member Agency Panel-Success of a Start-Up Agency with five proficient SAN Member Agency principal owners.

    The group's general business meeting bestowed awards to six industry top performers and recognized 46 member anniversaries. Cathy Mahoney of Shamrock Insurance of Concord, NH received honors for her 30th anniversary as a SAN Member.

    The day's dinner finale, offered extensive networking, profit sharing, bonus and override check distributions, and SAN raffle prizes. SAN founder and CEO for both SAN and SIAA, Jim Masiello, noted the company's successful evolution with a brief address.

    With their attendance, SAN members received a free digital portrait for social media and websites by Kevin Harkins Photography.

    "Each year," Masiello continued, "our membership increases, the economy changes, and technology creates new ways to conduct business. Our members need efficient and modernized tools to adjust their business plans and propel their agencies in the marketplace, regardless of the current industry cycle or overall economic environment. This yearly summit displays all the benefits of a SAN membership. No matter what the stage of their agency development, there is something for everyone."

    SAN Group, Inc. is the leading alliance of independent insurance agencies in the northeast. Over 325 members have access to more than 40 insurance companies and write in excess of $500 million in total member premiums. SAN is the founding member agency of the Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA), the national alliance of over 4,500 signed independent insurance agency members generating hundreds of millions in new premium business annually. For more information on SAN Group, visit www.sangroup.com.


    Target Markets Awards CPL Designations

    Wilmington, DE (May 2013)— The Target Markets Program Administrator Association (TMPAA) announced today that it awarded five of its members the Certified Programs Leader (CPL) Designation during their 2013 TMPAA Mid Year Meeting in Baltimore.

    Recipients of the CPL Designation completed and passed required Target University courses, and met program and industry experience expectations set out by the Association. “The mission of Target University and the CPL Designation is to further promote Best Practices in program administration, and recognize the specialized skill sets of Program Administrators,” stated David Springer, TMPAA President. “The University was developed through the efforts of the TMPAA Board and committee of TMPAA members who served as advisors on course development.”

    CPL Designation recipients included Dan Schoenfeld, Clarion Associates, Inc.; Tina Brizuela, Liberty International Underwriters; Frank Noyes, Markel Programs; Brian Kenny and David Beighley, Zurich.

    “The required university courses all deal with crucial aspects of successful program administration,” indicated Greg Thompson, TMPAA Past President and University Dean. “The coursework is rigorous, but presented in a unique and engaging format by experts currently working in this industry segment. All of our CPL Designation recipients demonstrated their mastery in these areas, and are also individuals who have a solid resume of work in programs. It is always an honor to be associated with this effort and to see the designation awarded to our Association Members.”

    The Target Markets Program Administrators Association is an organization dedicated to the unique challenges of insurance program administration. The TMPAA’s mission is to help Program Administrators conduct their business more efficiently, with greater proficiency and profitability. The organization provides its membership with an array of business and educational services including access to program carrier decision makers, Best Practice information and recognition, Target University, Program Marketing and Distribution, Target Programs (online portal), Industry Studies and two annual Member Meetings.

    The Association’s recent Mid Year Meeting was held in Baltimore, MD, May 6-9. Complete details of this event are now on the TMPAA website. The 13th Annual TMPAA Summit is scheduled for October 21-23 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

    Program Administrators / MGA’s interested in learning more about the TMPAA and the CPL Designation can visit the Association website at www.targetmarkets.com, or contact Ray Scotto, Executive Director, at (877) 347-5700 or ray.scotto@targetmkts.com.


    AAMGA RECOGNIZES NEW CIW AND CMGA DESIGNEES

    Hours of specialized training, course work lend credibility and respect to recipients

    MAY 20, 2013 - King of Prussia, Pa. - The Education Foundation of the American Association of Managing General Agents (AAMGA) will recognize three new Certified Insurance Wholesalers (CIWs) and two new Certified Managing General Agencies (CMGAs) at its 87th Annual Meeting in New Orleans, May 19-22, 2013. A total of 63 CIW's and 41 CMGA's have previously been certified by the Association and its Education Foundation.

    CIW designees for 2013 include Chris Behymer, Markel Corporation; Jennifer Larsen-Jensen, Erickson-Larson, Inc.; and David Miller, W.A. Schickedanz Agency, Inc., CMGA. Certified Managing General Agency designees for 2013 include Sierra Specialty Insurance Services, Inc., of Clovis, Calif., and Tuscano Agency of Greensburg, Pa.

    The CMGA designation is the only wholesale insurance industry designation of its kind awarded to an entire organization. Employees of an agency seeking to attain the designation must each complete eight hours of industry education per year, with a minimum amount attained through the AAMGA University.

    "This designation guarantees the employees of the CMGA Agency and their leadership are committed to continuing education and fostering their competencies and professionalism," said Jeffrey D. Henry, director of Education and Professional Development at AAMGA. "The value of this designation is evident in the credibility and respect the insurance markets and the industry hold agencies achieving this high standard."

    Recipients of the CIW are required to complete 120 hours of industry-specific training, a majority of which must be attained through the AAMGA University. Coursework includes specialty courses designed and taught specifically for the membership by experts within the Wholesale Insurance Marketplace. Once the minimum hour requirement is met, those applying for the designation must complete a comprehensive final project involving a topic relevant to the marketplace. Past projects have included research papers, new course development, detailed coverage analysis and involvement in programs such as mentoring and coaching.

    Contact: Jeffrey D. Henry, Dir. Of Education
    (610) 992-0022


    Glatfelter Service Center Honored in 2013 HDI CSAT Elite 50

    York, Pa. - May 22, 2013- The Service Center at Glatfelter Insurance Group has been recognized as #17 out of the top 50 support centers in the 2013 HDI CSAT Elite 50 - and is the top ranked service center in the insurance sector. HDI is the world's largest professional association and certification body for technical service and support professionals.

    "Providing service beyond the expectations of our clients is one the founding pillars of Glatfelter Insurance Group," said Wayne Umland, CIO of Glatfelter Insurance Group. "This honor from HDI is a testament to the dedication, professionalism and knowledge of all the associates in our Service Center."

    HDI uses the HDI Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) Service to track and trend customer satisfaction ratings from year to year. Based solely on the data collected over a twelve-month period, participating technical service and support centers are identified as leaders in the industry. The 50 support centers with the highest scores are then recognized by HDI as members of the HDI CSAT Elite 50. Teams that qualify for the HDI CSAT Elite 50 ranking are recognized at the HDI Annual Conference & Expo, where they are lauded as industry leaders in front of their peers and other organizations.

    Support teams can qualify for the HDI CSAT Elite 50 ranking each year, as long as they have received a minimum of 500 survey responses over a six-month period. The support centers' overall customer satisfaction ratings are based on 12 months of data, to allow for accurate trending.

    About Glatfelter Insurance Group
    Founded in 1951, Glatfelter Insurance Group (www.glatfelters.com) is an all-lines, full-service insurance broker marketing property, casualty, life, accident and health insurance products and risk management services on both a retail and wholesale/specialty basis throughout the United States. The company is headquartered in York, Pa., with five marketing offices across the country and a network of more than 4,500 independent agents and brokers. An employee-owned company, Glatfelter has more than 500 associates serving the insurance needs of more than 30,000 clients in all 50 states, placing it among the top 25 privately owned insurance brokers in the U.S.

    About HDI
    HDI is the professional association and certification body for the technical service and support industry. Facilitating collaboration and networking, HDI hosts acclaimed conferences and events, produces renowned publications and research, and certifies and trains thousands of professionals each year. HDI also connects solution providers with practitioners through industry partnerships and marketing services.

    Guided by an international panel of industry experts and practitioners, HDI serves a community of more than 120,000 technical service and support professionals and is the premier resource for best practices and emerging trends. For more information about HDI, visit www.ThinkHDI.com or call 800.248.5667.


    McGowan Purchases Assets of Governmental Underwriters of America, Inc.

    To Our Brokers:

    We are excited to announce that The McGowan Companies (McGowan) has purchased the assets of Governmental Underwriters of America, Inc. ("GUA"). Effective immediately GUA will begin operating under the newly formed "McGowan Governmental Underwriters" (MGU) brand.

    Founded in 2006, GUA is known throughout Ohio as the premier provider of Public Entity insurance (municipalities and school districts).

    The formation of the "McGowan Governmental Underwriters" brand consolidates all of McGowan's Public Entity operations into one facility. This operation will be headed by Terrence B. Phelan, as its President. David Gosiewski has been named Senior Vice President of the newly-formed company.

    All GUA brokers will receive automatic appointments with McGowan and its full range of products and capabilities. Further, all McGowan brokers will now have access to all of GUA's product offerings.

    MGU's Umbrella products are available in all 50 states, while MGU's package products initially will be available in OH and PA (with more states coming online soon).

    Please note: - Your contacts will not change. - Your current commission structure will remain in place.

    Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Cordially,

    Thomas B. McGowan, IV David Gosiewski
    President & Chief Executive Officer President
    The McGowan Companies - Home Office Governmental Underwriters of America, Inc.
    20595 Lorain Road 600 Superior Ave. East - Suite #1300
    Fairview Park, OH 44126 Cleveland, OH 44114
    P: 800.545.1538 (x3609) P: 440.356.8786
    t4@mcgowanins.com dgosiewski@guains.com


    Willis North America Strategic Outcomes Practice Rebranded as Risk Control and Claim Advocacy Practice

    Broker Expands Dedicated Resources, Launches Claim Closure Service to Respond to Client Needs

    Solutions Demo at Risk & Insurance Management Society’s Annual Conference

    NEW YORK, April 15, 2013 – Willis North America, a unit of Willis Group Holdings plc (NYSE: WSH), the global risk advisor and insurance broker, today announced the rebranding of its Strategic Outcomes Practice to Risk Control and Claim Advocacy Practice, effective immediately. The rebrand is part of Willis’ realignment of this practice to deliver seamless technical claim and risk control consulting services, and better support industry specialization via additional dedicated resources.

    Willis is an industry leader in claim management and risk control, helping organizations reduce their overall cost of risk through pre-loss consulting, proprietary data analytic technology and effective claim resolution. The Risk Control and Claim Advocacy Practice consists of 300 highly experienced claim consultants, risk control and analytics professionals across the North America platform, including professionals where claims can be exceedingly complex such as property, environmental pollution and construction accidents. The practice also features the insurance industry’s only centralized Claims Advocacy and Administration Group (CAAG), a dedicated team of claim professionals who report, monitor and expedite property, specialty and litigated claims.

    Willis has boosted its resources in this practice with additional industry expertise to respond to clients’ needs in construction, health care, technology, real estate, retail, manufacturing and hospitality, via the following:

    Claim Closure Service: Willis has partnered with Alan Gray, Inc. to launch its claim closure solution to help organizations decrease the number of open claims and reduce the total claims incurred. This effective application frees up valuable resources and improves balance sheets by lowering reserves, decreasing outstanding liabilities and reducing collateral requirements. This solution will be part of a suite of products demonstrated at the Willis booth at the upcoming Risk and Insurance Management Society’s Annual Conference and Exhibition.

    Medical Cost Containment Review Services: Willis is expanding its Medical Cost Containment Consulting capabilities to address the rising burden of medical costs. It is estimated that by 2020, Workers’ Compensation (WC) Medical Costs in the U.S. will comprise up to 70% of WC Costs. Willis is prepared to proactively help our clients address this trend.

    Human Factors Engineering: Willis’ certified ergonomists apply their understanding of interactions among employees and other elements in the work environment to optimize system performance and reduce the likelihood of musculoskeletal disorders which can result in costly workers compensation claims and decreased productivity.

    Supply Chain Risk Assessment and Catastrophe Risk Engineering: Willis has greatly enhanced its capabilities in this emerging area of risk management by combining site-specific catastrophe risk engineering with probability-based hazard risk modeling in order to meet our multi-national clients’ needs for supply chain risk solutions on a global scale. “It’s imperative that we create a center of engineering excellence to address not only the current challenges faced in the property market, but also to address the future catastrophic loss scenarios resulting from global climate change and the increased frequency of severity,” said Marc Hindman, Chief Risk Control Officer and Regional Practice Leader, Risk Control and Claim Advocacy Practice.

    Commenting on the rebrand, Joe Picone, Chief Claims Officer, Willis North America, said, “Willis is committed to being a strategic partner to help firms meet their risk management objectives, protect assets and ensure business continuity. As clients’ needs become more global in scope, we are excited to build on our success and drive innovative solutions and resources that deliver true value for clients."

    “The Willis model is designed for success and getting claims paid quickly, efficiently and appropriately is a fundamental part of The Willis Cause. “When Hurricane Sandy struck, Willis’ claim advocates delivered for our clients when they needed us the most, securing over $150 Million of advanced payments from carriers in a three week period following the event,” Mr. Picone added.

    About Willis
    Willis Group Holdings plc is a leading global risk advisor, insurance and reinsurance broker. With roots dating to 1828, Willis operates today on every continent with more than 17,000 employees in over 400 offices. Willis offers its clients superior expertise, teamwork, innovation and market-leading products and professional services in risk management and transfer. Our experts rank among the world’s leading authorities on analytics, modelling and mitigation strategies at the intersection of global commerce and extreme events. Find more information at our website, www.willis.com, our leadership journal, Resilience, or our up-to-the-minute blog on breaking news, WillisWire. Across geographies, industries and specialisms, Willis provides its local and multinational clients with resilience for a risky world.


    Scottsdale Insurance Company® Named Karen Davis Vice President of Agency Management and Business Development

    Scottsdale, AZ-Scottsdale Insurance Company©, a leader in the excess and surplus and specialty lines arena, named Karen Davis as vice president of Agency Management and Business Development. Davis will oversee the product management, research and new business development areas, reporting to Gary Tiepelman, senior vice president, Contract Underwriting. Davis is replacing Steve Franke, who became vice president of Contract Underwriting's West Region in January 2013.

    "Karen has a knack for bringing out the best in her agents and colleagues," said Tiepelman. "I am excited to see her bring out the best in us as she oversees our agency plant and our products on a line-of-business basis. Karen is sure to attract new products and programs. Her efforts are a crucial part of Scottsdale Insurance's long-term growth plans."

    Davis began her insurance career in underwriting with Great Southwest Fire and then moved to a retailer where she sold insurance for 12 years. Davis started working at Scottsdale Insurance Company in 1990 as a personal lines underwriter, and then quickly moved into management. She has steadily advanced her career over the last 23 years. Most recently, Davis served as senior director of Contract Underwriting's Southwest Region.

    "Karen exemplifies and personifies our company culture of building strong relationships with our customers," said Mike Miller, president of Scottsdale Insurance. "Our agents respect her knowledge and experience, but more importantly, they enjoy Karen and what she brings to the business. Karen and her agency management skills will take Scottsdale Insurance and our general agents to the next level."

    Davis holds the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), Associate in Surplus Lines Insurance (ASLI), Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC), and Certified Professional Insurance Woman (CPIW) designations and a coaching certificate.

    About Scottsdale Insurance Company
    A wholly owned subsidiary of Nationwide®, Scottsdale Insurance Company® (www.scottsdaleins.com) benefits from the backing of one of the largest insurance and financial service providers in the United States, an A.M. Best rating of A+XV (superior), and a Standard & Poor's "A" rating. As an industry leader with impeccable financial strength and stability, Scottsdale Insurance Company® provides its customers with exceptional experiences based on mutual respect and trust.

    Contact:
    Scottsdale Insurance Company Tom Tirone, 480-365-2283, tironet@scottsdaleins.com


    SIAA Signs 4500th Member Agency in March 2013

    April 12th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 40 new member agencies in March, including their 4500th signed member.

    Recruited by Master Agency Mountain Empire Agency Alliance, Don Scott Insurance of Lebanon, Tennessee has been servicing the insurance needs of Middle Tennessee since 1979.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With the signing of Don Scott Insurance, SIAA has reached a significant milestone. Since our auspicious beginnings in 1995, our growth has been exponential. 435 new Member Agencies joined our ranks in 2012. That was our 4th consecutive year with over 400 members signed, and we are on pace for another record-breaking year in 2013. Established small to mid-sized agencies as well as captive agents looking to break free and open their own independent agency continue to recognize the value of access to major reputable carriers and the agency development resources that SIAA membership provides. Over the past thirty years we have developed a model that works regardless of the economic climate, signing over 4500 members along the way."

    Masiello went on to say, "Agencies that see value in development & education, access to program and specialty markets, marketing assistance (including lead generation), automation discounts, and more recognize SIAA as the total solution to the challenge of agency success. We've spent three decades getting it right and our new member agencies reap the benefits."

    SIAA members created more than $680 million in new premium growth in 2012.

    March's new members include:

    East:
    POM Insurance of Parkton, MD
    Rickard Agency of Schenectady, NY
    T A Sullivan Insurance of Methuen, MA
    Central Virginia Insurance Agency of Charlottesville, VA
    Sturdevant Agency of Falls Church, VA
    First Insurance Services of Peabody, MA
    Skyland Insurance Group of Pipersville, PA
    Jim Mylod Insurance Depot Agency of Troy, NY
    A 2 Z Insurance of Scranton, PA

    Midwest:
    Affiliated Insurance of Westerville, OH
    Westchester Insurance Agency of Reynoldsburg, OH
    Give Your Kid A Million of Elmhurst, IL
    DMI Agency of Holly, MI
    JF Marshall Insurance Agency of Fairlawn, OH
    Provision Insurance Group of Southfield, MI
    Spaulding Insurance Agency of Wisconsin Rapids, WI
    Mazur Agency of Okemos, MI
    Hicks Agency of Lansing, MI

    West:
    Belshe Insurance Group of Orem, UT
    JT Zinn Insurance of Missoula, MT
    Barry Alley Insurance Agency of Beaverton, OR
    Dena St Clair of Corona, CA

    Southeast:
    Braden Insurance Agency of Louisville, KY
    Hospitality Insurance Agency of Florence, SC
    Beyond Capital of Meridian, MS
    Adkins & Associates Insurance of Jacksonville, FL
    Raleigh-Bartlett Insurance Agency of Bartlett, TN
    Randy Stefanelli Insurance Agency of Chiefland, FL
    The McMillan and Bufkin Insurance Group of Jackson, MS
    Southern Business Company of Cordele, GA
    Rowley Insurance Agency of Englewood, FL
    Jay Sussman Insurance of Florida of Tampa, FL
    Don Scott Insurance of Lebanon, TN
    Winget & Associates of Ocala, FL
    Don Wells Insurance Agency of Ocala, FL
    Beacon Insurance Partners of Tampa, FL

    South Central:
    Gabriel Insurance Group of Grapevine, TX
    Sooner State Insurance Agency of Pryor, OK
    Prachyl Insurance Agency of Ennis, TX
    RYACO of Muskogee, OK

    SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance
    For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


    Markel promotes Mike Scyphers to Chief Information Officer

    RICHMOND, Va., Mar. 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Markel Corporation (NYSE: MKL) announced today that Mike Scyphers has been promoted to Chief Information Officer. Mike is an information technology industry veteran with 23 years of experience who has been employed with Markel since 2009. Since joining Markel, Mike has served as technology lead for Markel Wholesale. He reports to Brad Kiscaden, Executive Vice President - Actuarial, IT & Information Management, and is based in Richmond.

    “Mike has done an impressive job focusing on managing costs and delivering projects on time and on budget. He has energized our IT team, successfully instituted a new governance structure, and is now starting to fortify our technology infrastructure in a scalable way,” stated Brad.

    Richie Whitt, President and Co-Chief Operating Officer of Markel, added, “Mike is the kind of results-oriented, live within your means, imagine the possibilities kind of leader we need. His skills and passion will serve us well as we continue to grow and leverage information to our advantage in all facets of our business.”

    Mike worked previously for the National Cancer Institute, Signet Bank, Circuit City, and JP Morgan Chase.

    About Markel Corporation
    Markel Corporation is a diverse financial holding company serving a variety of niche markets. The Company’s principal business markets and underwrites specialty insurance products. In each of the Company’s businesses, it seeks to provide quality products and excellent customer service so that it can be a market leader. The financial goals of the Company are to earn consistent underwriting and operating profits and superior investment returns to build shareholder value. Visit Markel Corporation on the web at markelcorp.com.


    SIAA Grows by 35 Agencies in February 2013

    March 19th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 35 new member agencies in February.

    "We are excited to be able to grow at a steady and aggressive pace." said Jim Masiello, SIAA's CEO. "432 new Member Agencies joined our ranks in 2012. That was our 4th consecutive year with over 400 members signed, and we are on pace for another record-breaking year in 2013. Established small to mid-sized agencies as well as captive agents looking to break free and open their own independent agency continue to recognize the value of access to major reputable carriers and the agency development resources that SIAA membership provides. Over the past thirty years we have developed a model that works regardless of the economic climate, signing over 4500 members along the way."

    Masiello went on to say, "Agencies that see value in development & education, access to program and specialty markets, marketing assistance (including lead generation), automation discounts, and more recognize SIAA as the total solution to the challenge of agency success. We've spent three decades getting it right and our new member agencies reap the benefits."

    SIAA members created more than $680 million in new premium growth in 2012.

    February's new members include:

    East:
    Members 1st Insurance Services of Mechanicsburg, PA
    Encompass Agency of Buffalo, NY
    Runyon Insurance Group of Lenore, WV
    Appalachian Independent Insurance of Huntington, WV
    aAXS Insurance Group of Capon Bridge, WV
    Statewide Insurance of Milford, NH
    IFG Insurance Solutions of Newtown, PA
    The Blystone Company of Hatfield, PA
    Volko Insurance Agency of Doylestown, PA

    Midwest:
    Render Insurance Agency of Akron, OH
    MVP Agency of Johnstown, OH
    Stockton-Hill Insurance of Kingston, OH
    Conner Insurance Agency of Lancaster, OH
    Integrated Insurance Agency of Fort Gratiot, MI
    Marsilje Insurance Agency of Holland, MI
    Steward Keator Kessberger & Lederer of Burr Ridge, IL
    Globalnet Insurance of Indianapolis, IN
    Kevin P. Reilly Insurance Group of Chicago, IL
    Cedar River Insurance Agency of Okemos, MI
    Edge Insurance of Omaha, NE
    Maki Insurance Group of Saint John, IN
    Howe Insurance Group of Cedar Lake, IN

    West:
    SavePro Insurance Services of El Cajon, CA
    Express My Way of Calabasas, CA
    Top Tier Insurance of Milwaukie, OR

    Southeast:
    All United Insurance Agency of Charlotte, NC
    Smith Insurance & Financial Group of Brownsville, TN
    Superior Benefits of Tampa, FL
    Granite Risk Advisors of Kennesaw, GA

    South Central:
    Pluta Insurance Agency of Irving, TX
    Crump Commercial Insurance Agency of Covington, LA
    Advantage Insurance Solutions of Fort Worth, TX
    Stay Kalm of Farmers Branch, TX
    Frank Birely Insurance Agency of Richardson, TX

    SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance
    For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


    Philadelphia Insurance Companies Wins “Contact Center of the Year”

    PHLY receives Gold Stevie Award for Contact Center of the Year in Insurance

    Bala Cynwyd, PA, March 11, 2013 - Philadelphia Insurance Companies (PHLY), a leading property/casualty and professional liability insurance company for niche markets, was named the Gold Stevie Award winner for Contact Center of the Year (under 100 seats) in the Financial Services and Insurance Industry. The Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service recognize the achievements of call center, customer service, and sales professionals worldwide.

    “This is a tremendous honor for PHLY and our employees who are passionately committed to consistently delivering an unsurpassed service experience to our customers,” said Seth Hall, Vice President of Customer Service. “We are very proud to receive this award as an external validation of our customer service efforts.”

    In addition to the Gold Stevie Award, PHLY received a Bronze Stevie Award in the Relationship Management Solution category, attributed to its Voice of the Customer program. In 2012, the Company won a Bronze Stevie Award for Customer Service Department of the Year and Vice President of Customer Service Seth Hall won a Silver Stevie for Customer Service Executive of the Year. PHLY also became accredited by the Better Business Bureau last year and was given an “A+” (highest) rating, based on the low number of complaints filed against the Company for a business of its size, the Company’s response to complaints, and the Company’s resolution of complaints, among other factors.

    PHLY’s Service Excellence Results are highlighted by the fact that 95.4% of policyholders surveyed said they would recommend PHLY to prospective customers. To locate the PHLY office nearest you or for more information, visit www.phly.com or call 1-800-873-4552.

    About Philadelphia Insurance
    Philadelphia Insurance Companies, a member of the Tokio Marine Group, designs, markets, and underwrites commercial property/casualty and professional liability insurance products incorporating value added coverages and services for select industries. In operation since 1962, the Company, whose commercial lines insurance subsidiaries are rated “A++” (Superior) by A.M. Best Company and “A+” for counterparty credit and financial strength by Standard & Poor’s, is nationally recognized as a member of Ward's Top 50 and National Underwriter’s Top 100. The organization has 45 offices strategically located across the United States to provide superior service. For more information, please visit www.PHLY.com.


    Donard Reilly Joins New Empire Group, Ltd.

    Long Beach, NY, March 6th, 2013 - New Empire Group is pleased to announce that Inland Marine Specialist Donard Reilly has joined the company as a senior vice president and will head the newly-formed Inland Marine Department.

    Donard brings over 25 years of inland marine experience to New Empire Group, the past thirteen as an owner of inland marine MGAs including Mainland Specialty, using The Chubb Insurance Group as the underwriting carrier.

    "I am excited. I know this is going to be a great opportunity for myself and New Empire Group," comments Reilly. "I am honored to be part of the New Empire Group family."

    Mr. Reilly will manage the inland marine program which currently offers a variety of coverage options such as builder's risk, contractor's equipment and most other inland marine coverages. The program is currently available in CT, DE, MD, NC, NJ, NY, OH, PA and VA, but will be expanding to most other states in the next year.

    Robert E. Mackoul, New Empire Group's Chief Executive Officer, says, "Mr. Reilly's wealth of experience and industry knowledge has already made him a key addition to the New Empire Group team. We are confident that under his guidance the program and the department will grow significantly in the years to come".

    About New Empire Group
    New Empire Group is committed to providing the most well-rounded, competitive insurance programs in the country. With over 150 years of combined insurance experience and a dedicated team of seasoned program managers, the company serves over 2,500 agents, brokers, wholesalers and MGA's, nationwide. In today's ever-changing market, New Empire Group's ultimate goal is to ensure that its clients have what they need in order to grow and maintain a successful, sustainable business.

    Contact:
    Donard Reilly, Senior Vice President
    (516) 690-8139
    Donardr@newempiregroup.com
    www.NewEmpireGroup.com
    New Empire Group, Ltd
    214 West Park Ave
    Long Beach, New York
    516-431-8300


    Philadelphia Insurance Companies Names Bob O’Leary as New CEO

    Sean Sweeney Steps Down as CEO of PHLY

    Bala Cynwyd, PA, February 5, 2013 - Philadelphia Insurance Companies (PHLY), a leading property/casualty and professional liability insurance company for niche markets, today announced that Robert (Bob) D. O’Leary, Jr. has been named the new President and CEO of the Company, effective immediately. Mr. O’Leary currently serves as PHLY’s Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. Sean S. Sweeney is stepping down as President and CEO of PHLY for personal reasons.

    “Bob has been a significant influence on the success and expansion of PHLY’s operations during his 30 years with the Company,” shared Jamie Maguire, Chairman of Philadelphia Insurance Companies. “I look forward to working with Bob to continue our tradition of excellence, superior service, and partnerships with the communities we serve.”

    “I am excited to assume this new role and look forward to building new relationships and growth opportunities for PHLY and its partners,” said Mr. O’Leary. “We have an exceptionally talented group of employees who are committed to making PHLY the leading provider of specialized insurance products and services.”

    Mr. O’Leary’s insurance career began in 1977 as an Industrial Sales Representative for American Mutual Insurance Company. Five years later he joined Maguire Insurance Agency (the original marketing name of Philadelphia Insurance Companies) as a Regional Manager for the New England Region. He was named Regional Vice President of PHLY in 1986 and managed the Great Lakes area in addition to New England and New York. As the Company's business became more concentrated, Mr. O'Leary's territory became the Northeast Region, which encompassed New England and New York. In April of 2006, he was named Senior Vice President for the Eastern Territory, and two years later he was promoted to Executive Vice President of Marketing. Mr. O'Leary assumed the role Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer in January of 2012.

    Mr. Sweeney steps down after more than 30 years of service with PHLY. He started out as an account executive and has dedicated most of his career to PHLY’s success. In 1993, Mr. Sweeney helped take PHLY public with founder James J. Maguire, Sr. and was involved in the successful merger with Tokio Marine in 2008.

    “I’ve worked closely with Sean over the past 18 years and I have the highest respect and admiration for him and his contributions to PHLY,” commented Jamie Maguire. “I thank Sean for all he’s done and we wish him all the best.”

    About Philadelphia Insurance
    Philadelphia Insurance Companies, a member of the Tokio Marine Group, designs, markets, and underwrites commercial property/casualty and professional liability insurance products incorporating value added coverages and services for select industries. In operation since 1962, the Company, whose commercial lines insurance subsidiaries are rated “A++” (Superior) by A.M. Best Company and “A+” for counterparty credit and financial strength by Standard & Poor’s, is nationally recognized as a member of Ward's Top 50 and National Underwriter’s Top 100. The organization has 45 offices strategically located across the United States to provide superior service. For more information, please visit www.PHLY.com.


    Extreme Networking "All In" Vegas 2013

    We are very excited to be bringing our act to Vegas and hope that you will be "All In" with us on April 10-12, 2013. Your relationship with us is highly valued, and we are committed to giving you value and the most exposure possible. Please take a moment to review the packages below and let us know if you have any questions.

    Also, please note that registration for the event is separate from sponsorship - don’t forget to register. If there is anything that we can do to help you, please do no hesitate to contact us at 877-748-5467.

    STRATEGIC PARTNER SPONSORSHIP PACKAGES

    SHOWTIME ROLL THE DICE
    Video or stills that you provide will be displayed on screen during our scheduled 10-minute breaks. Audio is also available. There will be multiple breaks available throughout the sessions. At the Thursday evening dinner, attendees will be greeted with a drink, courtesy of your company. Signage and cocktail napkins imprinted with your company logo/slogan will be included.
    Cost: $500.00 Cost: $5,000.00

    SHOWTIME HIGH STAKES VIVA LAS VEGAS
    Your video or still ad that you provide will be placed on our Sitkins University site. It will automatically play prior to certain segments. Video ads are maximum one minute length. There are two placement options. Sponsor a snack break during the session. Includes signage to acknowledge your sponsorship. Multiple opportunities available.
    Top Rate Presentation: $4,000.00
    Main Stage Presentation: $3,000.00
    Cost: $6,000.00

    CASH IN YOUR CHIPS WORKBOOK THE LUCKY BREAK
    Place a full color ad in the attendee workbook. Full page and half page space available. Flexibility available on placement of advertisements. Sponsor the Wednesday evening Welcome Reception that will be held in J.C. Wooloughan's Irish Pub. Includes signage and cocktail napkins imprinted with your company logo/slogan, a full-page ad in the workbook, a video ad that you provide will be displayed during breaks, a door-prize presented on your behalf, and lots of recognition!
    Half Page: $1,000.00
    Full Page: $2,000.00
    Cost: $7,500.00

    Main Stage Presentations

    The Best Sales System
    Get Buy-In From Producers
    More Producers - More Successful
    Get Out of the Dark Ages....
    Pipeline Retreats
    Sales Mastery Best Practices

    Breakouts

    Making Money Through Strategic Partners – The new and enhanced Strategic Partners Program at Sitkins offers many opportunities to increase revenues and decrease expenses. Learn how to take advantage of these resources in this informative session.

    Personal Branding is Crucial in 2013 – Larry Linne's new book, "Brand Damage – It's Personal" will be released in April. Larry will give insights to why personal branding is taking over corporate branding. Participants "may" get a free copy of the new book. Show up and find out!

    Effective Sales Meetings – Meetings are challenging for most companies. In this session we will give insights to make your meetings interesting, help build the confidence of Producers, and increase results.

    Make Sitkins WikiRisk™ Powerful in Your Organization - Brandon White and Gregg Goodmanson will show members how to utilize the Sitkins WIkiRisk™ resource to increase sales. From training, to learning business acumen, to quantifying and presenting, this session will help sales leaders get results!

    Benefits Growth Strategies – Healthcare in the US and Canada have many challenges for insurance agents. We have to increase our revenues and this is a playing field with tons of opportunities. This session will present ideas and insights to increase revenues in your benefits division.

    Effective Producer Management – Producers are not an easy personality to manage. This session will give direction to maximize results, improve training, manage pipelines, improve morale, increase confidence, attract talent, and more.

    Core, Acceleration, Mastery Best Practices – Each of these three sessions will be an opportunity to share best practices that apply to different levels of growth and success in the industry. We have an enhanced process for Extreme Networking Las Vegas, to allow for every agency to share the best practice and record it for increased awareness.

    LOCATION

    JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa
    221 N. Rampart Blvd.
    Las Vegas, NV 89145
    Sitkins Room Rate: $149++
    Concierge Desk is 702-869-7803 or by email at business1@jwmarriottlv.com

    Reservations: must be made by or before March 9, 2013.

    AIRPORT

    McCarran International Airport (LAS) - 18 miles from J.W. Marriott

    AGENDA AT A GLANCE

    Wednesday, April 10, 2013
    7:00 - 9:00 pm    Welcome Reception
    Thursday, April 11, 2013
    7:00 am    Breakfast
    8:00 am    EN Session
    12:00 pm    Lunch
    4:00 pm (Approx.)    EN Session
    7:00 - 10:00 pm    Networking Dinner
    Friday, April 12, 2013
    7:00 am    Breakfast
    8:00 - Noon    EN Session Finishes

    REGISTRATION

    : $645 (By or before March 8, 2013) Registration

    QUESTIONS

    As always, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

    We look forward to seeing you in Vegas!

    Sitkins International
    877-748-5467


    Markel Specialty assigns new product development role to Mark Nichols

    Richmond, VA, January 30, 2013 — Greg Thompson, President of Markel Specialty, announced today that Mark Nichols has assumed new responsibilities as the Executive Manager of Markel Specialty’s new product development team. Markel is expanding its portfolio of property and casualty products supporting commercial and personal lines customers. Based in Richmond, VA, Mark has been an executive with Markel for thirty years and has a track record of developing new products and industry niches. He served most recently as the Managing Executive of Markel Specialty’s Accident & Health business.

    Mark is joined by Debbie Anglin, Director of new product development. Debbie came to Markel as a result of Markel’s acquisition of Thompson Insurance Enterprises, LCC (dba THOMCO) in 2012.

    “Mark is talented, creative, and uniquely suited to this role. We continuously look for ways to grow our book of business both organically and by acquisition. I am confident that Mark and Debbie will deliver desirable and profitable products and packages for our policyholders. They are working with our producers to identify SIC and NAICS codes with specialty insurance needs. It is my ongoing belief that we must continuously put new and improved products in front of our customers,” commented Greg.

    Mark added, “We are going to subject new product ideas to a systematic R&D process. Inspired by the Markel Style, our goals are to be dynamic, thoughtful, and supportive of retail agents and agencies. Markel has always been a niche-focused insurer, and this rededication to new products is consistent with our overall business strategy and approach.”

    For more specific information regarding Markel Specialty’s product development efforts, contact Mark Nichols at 804-527-7622 or mnichols@markelcorp.com.

    About Markel Specialty
    Markel Specialty provides specialty commercial and personal lines insurance solutions to policyholders in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. Not all products are available in all jurisdictions. To learn more, visit our web sites at markelinsurance.com, firstcomp.com, thomcoins.com, markelprograms.com, and markelinsuresfun.com.

    For more information contact: Mark Nichols, Markel Specialty, 804-527-7622, mnichols@markelcorp.com


    NBIS and the Specialized Carriers & Rigging Association announce contract extension

    On December 31st, 2012, NBIS and the Specialized Carriers & Rigging Association, (SC&RA) extended their Endorsed Sponsorship Agreement for another three years, expiring December 31, 2016.

    NBIS has been the SC&RA endorsed property casualty insurance provider since January 1996. Over the past 17 years in partnership, NBIS has provided superior service and expertise in risk management, underwriting and claims services to our insured’s and to members of the SC&RA.

    Together, NBIS and the SC&RA have developed a unique risk management program to reduce the risk of loss and save lives. As in the past, the partnership is sponsoring future educational sessions and webinars to benefit the Association members, develop risk management and loss control benefits, as well as sponsoring other SC&RA events throughout the coming years.

    Working together as partners will allow the SC&RA to increase membership and the number of members insured through NBIS. Through these efforts and with the continued support of the Association, NBIS believes the company grows stronger through its relationship and appreciates the support of the SC&RA and its members.

    NBIS delivers premier construction and transport insurance programs, as well as unique risk management products and services. Our proven loss prevention, risk management support, reliable claims service, highly competitive rates and broad coverage allow us to deliver more options for your business than any other insurer. We are also dedicated to helping you manage the challenging risk of your business with the added security of an "A-" (Excellent) rated carrier.


    Mountain Empire Agency Alliance Signs 50th Member Agency

    January 29th, 2013 - Hampton, NH & Kingsport, TN: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to announce that Master Agency partner Mountain Empire Agency Alliance has signed its 50th Member Agency, adding to the national total of over 4300 signed members.

    "We are proud to welcome Jim Embree Insurance of Bristol, Tennessee as the newest Independent Strategic Member of our Alliance," announced MEAA Vice President Beth Roe. "As a member agency, they stand to benefit from access to our strategic partners, as well our decades of experience in agency operations including 4 as an SIAA Certified Master Agency. Our retail shop, Price & Ramey, has serviced the insurance needs of this region since 1914 and is licensed in 9 states. We are dedicated to providing local independent insurance agents with the opportunity to flourish by opening access to benefits typically available only to large regional agencies producing significant volumes of insurance business."

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With the signing of Jim Embree Insurance, MEAA has reached a significant milestone to which our Master Agencies across the country strive, and at a record-breaking pace. It's this model of locally-based growth that affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere Alliance of independent insurance agencies in the country. Our model has worked for 17 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    Mountain Empire Agency Alliance became an SIAA Master Agency in 2008. With territory spanning 46 counties in Eastern Tennessee, Northern Virginia, and Western North Carolina, they are one of the largest independent agency groups in the region. For more information on MEAA, visit www.meaa4u.com.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels, as well as an online insurance presence for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to offering significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,300 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Senior Banking and Insurance Executive Joins OSC as Chief Operating Officer

    Atlanta - Financial risk management and lender-placed insurance services firm OSC named veteran banking and insurance executive John Dangoia as executive vice president and chief operating officer.

    Tracey Carragher, CEO of OSC parent company Breckenridge Insurance Group, said Dangoia "will position OSC for aggressive growth this year with the expansion of our lender protection product lines and our initiatives in the technology, compliance and financial risk management markets."

    Dangoia said "With Dodd Frank now in place, OSC's insurance products and risk management services backed by our proprietary tracking technology meet the growing and complex needs of our customers."

    Dangoia will guide the company's senior management team working with OSC founder and CEO Larry Overby. Dangoia comes to OSC from CUNA Mutual Group where he held positions as lender product executive and chief credit officer for commercial and consumer insurance products.

    Before joining CUNA Mutual Group, Dangoia spent more than 20 years with Wells Fargo & Company where he held a variety of progressively senior management roles. At CUNA Mutual Group he was part of the leadership team that successfully transformed the company's lending-related insurance products for credit unions throughout the United States.

    "With his experience John understands the needs of our customer, both large and small," Carragher said. "Our customers face more and more complex regulatory challenges and lending risks, especially as the housing market continues to strengthen," she added.

    In 2012 OSC announced it was one of the first financial risk management and collateral protection firms to complete the SSAE16 SOC1 audit, the successor to SAS 70 standard. The audit documents that the OSC systems and processes meet the industry's highest standards.

    Dangoia said, "OSC has completed a series of initiatives that places the company in the forefront of compliance and technology leadership in the insurance and lending markets."

    About OSC
    OSC, a specialist in insurance and risk management services and products for lenders offers a comprehensive range of portfolio protection and financial risk management services to both large and small institutions. OSC, with its parent company Breckenridge Insurance Group, augments its traditional collateral protection insurance coverage options with additional lending, insurance and risk management products.


    Cyber Threats among issues to be addressed by Former US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman at TMPAA Mid Year Meeting

    Wilmington DE - Admiral Mike Mullen, USN (Ret.) will address The Target Markets Program Administrators Association (TMPAA) at their Mid Year Meeting and discuss his belief that the nation's financial health is directly related to our national security. Mullen will discuss the range of threats that the U.S. faces, including the vulnerability to cyber attacks that could significantly impact business as well as the nation's critical infrastructure.

    David Springer, TMPAA President, stated, "One of our missions is to educate and inform our members about matters that will impact their operations. Admiral Mullen's unique insight on these issues will provide our group with important information about the security of our businesses and data."

    Admiral Mike Mullen served at a critical juncture in our nation's history. He was America's top military advisor to the President and the Secretary of Defense through two administrations, and a key influencer in shaping the future security of our nation. The TMPAA's Mid Year Meeting is scheduled for May 6-8, in Baltimore, MD.

    In addition to Admiral Mullen's presentation, the TMPAA also plans to conduct their second annual Program Administrators Town Hall Meeting to address issues specific to program administration. Industry Keynote, Seraina Maag, Chief Executive North America P&C of XL Group is scheduled to address the group regarding the state of the industry.

    Admiral Mullen's keynote presentation is sponsored by TMPAA members, York Programs and Wilson Elser.

    Program Administrator / MGA's interested in learning more about the TMPAA, can visit the Association Website at www.targetmarkets.com or call 877-347-5700. Meeting registration forms as well as an agenda for the event is available on the website.

    Wilson Elser can be found at www.wilsonelser.com ; York Programs can be found at www.yorkclaims.com

    The Target Markets Program Administrators Association is an organization dedicated to the unique challenges of insurance program administration. The TMPAA's mission is to help Program Administrators conduct their business more efficiently, with greater proficiency and profitability. The organization provides its membership with an array of business and educational services including access to program carrier decision makers, best practice recognition, Target University, Program Marketing and Distribution, Industry Studies and two annual Member Meetings.

    For additional information, contact Ray Scotto - Executive Director - at (877) 347 - 5700 E-mail address: ray.scotto@targetmkts.com


    2012 An Outstanding Year for SIAA

    January 21, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance has released their 2012 numbers, and is proud to report another year of significant growth as members wrote over $680 million in premium growth, 57% of it with Strategic Partner Insurance Companies. Total written premium for SIAA member agencies now exceeds $4.0 billion.

    CEO Jim Masiello cites membership growth as a large factor. "SIAA's growth continues at an astounding pace. We added 432 new members in 2012…that's our fourth consecutive year signing over 400 new member agencies," continued Masiello, "bringing our total signings to over 4300."

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance
    For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net or Doug Coombs, Chief Marketing Officer at dougc@siaa.net.


    New Underwriting Management Partnership for Converging Risk Coverage Announced by Ryan Specialty Group's ThinkRisk and Aspen US Insurance

    January 17, 2013, CHICAGO, IL - Ryan Specialty Group's (RSG) ThinkRisk Underwriting Agency (ThinkRisk) and Aspen US Insurance (Aspen) announced today that they have entered into a new underwriting partnership. ThinkRisk will transition its existing Converging Risk program - specialized errors and omissions insurance for media, advertising, technology, privacy and network and security risks - to Aspen in the capacity as their MGU for this product in the US.

    RSG Chairman Patrick G. Ryan said, "The convergence of media, technology and privacy exposures across a wide range of diverse industries requires particular underwriting expertise. ThinkRisk is an acknowledged industry leader in this segment. Aspen's reputation as a leading global insurer with a keen focus on developing innovative specialty insurance products, and their strong interest in and commitment to this segment aligns perfectly with ThinkRisk's long-term strategic plans. We believe strongly that this partnership between ThinkRisk and Aspen will offer tremendous value to our brokers and clients."

    ThinkRisk President Nicole Haggerty noted, "Technology is a double-edged sword. While it has helped us become more efficient, it has had unintended consequences that require a diverse and comprehensive range of liability products to manage the associated risks. By partnering with Aspen, we will be able to respond to these emerging risks quickly and efficiently with innovative E&O products and risk management services for our clients."

    Bruce Eisler, Aspen's Executive Vice President and Chief Underwriter of the Professional Liability division added, "We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Ryan Specialty Group-specifically, ThinkRisk. Aspen is able to offer both surplus lines and admitted capabilities which are anchored by our financial strength and "A" rating from A.M. Best. The converging risk liability offering with ThinkRisk provides a strong complement to Aspen's existing stand-alone professional liability products, and reflects our commitment to selectively expanding our product offering in our target market segments."

    For more information on this release, contact Chelsey Krull, (312) 784-6043, ckrull@ryansg.com.

    About Ryan Specialty Group, LLC and ThinkRisk Underwriting Agency
    Ryan Specialty Group, LLC is a global holding company which includes ThinkRisk Underwriting Managers and other highly-specialized underwriting companies, a Lloyd's insurer and specialty services designed specifically for agents, brokers and insurers. www.ryansg.com

    About Aspen US Insurance
    Aspen US Insurance, which is part of Aspen Insurance Holdings Limited ("Aspen"), writes property, casualty and specialty insurance in the US on both a surplus lines and admitted basis through Aspen Specialty Insurance Company and Aspen American Insurance Company. Our underwriting teams have a specialized focus on opportunities in Inland Marine and Ocean Risks, Professional Liability, Management Liability and Directors and Officers Insurance which are underwritten in addition to established lines of Property, General Casualty and Environmental Liability. Further information about Aspen can be found at www.aspen.co Application of the Safe Harbor of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

    This press release contains written, and Aspen's officers may make related oral, "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the U.S. federal securities laws regarding its execution of its business plans. These statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include all statements that do not relate solely to historical or current facts, and can be identified by the use of words such as "expect," "intend," "plan," "believe," "project," "anticipate," "seek," "will," "estimate," "may," "continue," and similar expressions of a future or forward-looking nature. All forward-looking statements rely on a number of assumptions, estimates and data concerning future results and events and are subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside Aspen's control that could cause actual results to differ materially from such statements, including changes in market conditions and their impact on our business. For a detailed description of uncertainties and other factors that could impact the forward-looking statements in this release, please see the "Risk Factors" section in Aspen's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011, filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on February 28, 2012.


    Call for Entries for 2013 IMCA Showcase™ Awards

    Entries now being accepted for the insurance industry's longest-running creative awards for marketing and communications professionals

    Oak Park, Illinois - January 15, 2013 - The Insurance Marketing and Communications Association (IMCA) is pleased to announce a worldwide invitation for entries into the prestigious IMCA Showcase™ Awards, the longest-running creative awards competition for insurance marketing and communications professionals.

    The 2013 IMCA Showcase Awards competition, now in its 55th year, offers awards in 35 categories spanning electronic, print, social and broadcast media, as well as internal and external communications, corporate communications, and marketing communications. Entries are electronically accepted from IMCA members and nonmembers alike, and all submissions are eligible for Best of Show and Award of Excellence awards.

    IMCA's top Showcase recognition, the coveted SAMMY award, is presented to the overall best submission as voted on by attendees during the IMCA Annual Conference. Last year's top winners included Safeco, Liberty Mutual, The Hartford, and Farmers Insurance. For more information about last year's Showcase Awards please visit: http://www.imcanet.com/index.php?q=node/316.

    This year's Showcase Awards will be presented at the Showcase Awards Gala on June 25. The gala is part of IMCA's 2013 Annual Conference, taking place June 23-­-26 at the Ritz Carlton in Philadelphia.

    The deadline for Showcase entries is March 29, 2013. Insurance marketing and communications professionals can electronically enter at www.imcanet.com. For more information, contact IMCA Executive Director Tom Wetzel at 708-524-4944 or twetzel@imcanet.com.

    In addition, for the third consecutive year, IMCA has teamed up with the National Association of Professional Surplus Lines Offices (NAPSLO) and the Target Markets Program Administrators Association (TMPAA) to offer members of the associations formally judged marketing campaign competitions. The same IMCA Showcase Award judges will judge entries for the NAPSLO Marketing Campaign Award and TMPAA Program Marketing Campaign Award. Awards are presented at each association's respective event.

    About the Insurance Marketing and Communications Association IMCA (www.imcanet.com) is the oldest insurance marketing association in North America with roots tracing back to 1921. Membership includes leading international and domestic multi-line insurance companies and brokerage firms, regional and specialty companies, general agencies, and prominent industry suppliers. The organization represents over 120 companies, including the top five property/casualty writers. Members include senior level management and professional staff working in the areas of corporate communications, advertising, public relations, marketing communications, marketing and sales promotion, marketing research and technology.


    Change in Direction Announced by Ryan Specialty Group's
    ThinkRisk Underwriting Agency and Great American Insurance Company

    January 14, 2013, CHICAGO, IL -ThinkRisk Underwriting Agency (ThinkRisk), part of Ryan Specialty Group, and Great American Insurance Company (Great American), part of Great American Insurance Group, have mutually agreed that due to increasing channel conflicts within Great American, ThinkRisk will pursue a change in carrier partnerships for its Converging Risk program which has been supported by Great American for the past three years.

    RSG Chairman Patrick G. Ryan says of the change, "At RSG, our goal is to build strong underwriting management companies that focus on growth and innovation. We respect and appreciate the support and contributions made by Great American to the growth of ThinkRisk."

    ThinkRisk President Nicole Haggerty added, "We are grateful for our relationship with Great American, and for the support they have provided for the Converging Risk program. We are optimistic about the new opportunities and products that ThinkRisk will deliver to our producers and clients in the future."

    Bruce R. Smith, President, Great American Insurance Group's Executive Liability Division, noted, "We value our relationship with ThinkRisk and are committed to working with their team to ensure an orderly transition of this program. We are looking forward to pursuing other opportunities to work with RSG in the future. Great American's Executive Liability Division has been serving the insurance marketplace for 26 years, and we look forward to continuing to be a carrier of choice for our producers and insureds."

    ThinkRisk will continue to manage the Converging Risk Program, on behalf of Great American, until April 30th 2013.

    For more information on this release, contact Chelsey Krull, (312) 784-6043, ckrull@ryansg.com.


    Scottsdale Insurance Company® Named Steve Franke VP of Contract Underwriting

    Scottsdale, AZ-Scottsdale Insurance Company©, a leader in the Excess & Surplus and Specialty Lines arena, named Steve Franke as vice president, Contract Underwriting-West Region. Franke will oversee the Northwest, Southwest, and Pacific regions and will report to Gary Tiepelman, senior vice president, Contract Underwriting. Franke is replacing Dave McDermid, who retired from Scottsdale Insurance in December 2012.

    "With Steve's many years in the industry, he has deep underwriting knowledge," Gary said. "He understands how we can best serve our customers because he knows our general agents so well. And they know and trust him. I'm excited to have Steve in this new role and anticipate he'll positively impact our partnerships and our bottom line."

    Franke is an experienced insurance executive with 32 years in the specialty lines business. He most recently served as vice president of Agency Management and Business Development for eight years at Scottsdale Insurance. Prior to that, Franke served in management roles at various E&S firms.

    "Franke brings agency management expertise into his new role," said Mike Miller, president of Scottsdale Insurance. "He has an excellent reputation in the industry and understands how to lead while reading shifts in the market. We're confident Franke will continue to contribute greatly to Scottsdale's growth in the western regions and to our success overall."

    Franke proudly serves as a board member of the Scottsdale/Paradise Valley YMCA and the Surplus Lines Stamping Office of Texas. He graduated with a BS in business administration from Arizona State University. He has his Associate in Reinsurance (ARe) designation as well as a CPCU certification.

    About Scottsdale Insurance
    A wholly owned subsidiary of Nationwide®, Scottsdale Insurance Company® (www.scottsdaleins.com) benefits from the backing of one of the largest insurance and financial service providers in the United States, an A.M. Best rating of A+XV (superior), and a Standard & Poor's "A" rating. As an industry leader with impeccable financial strength and stability, Scottsdale Insurance Company® provides its customers with exceptional experiences based on mutual respect and trust.

    Contact:
    Scottsdale Insurance Company
    Tom Tirone, 480-365-2283, tironet@scottsdaleins.com


    SIAA Grows by 25 Agencies in December 2012

    January 9th, 2013 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 25 new member agencies in December.

    "We are excited to be able to grow at a steady and aggressive pace." said Jim Masiello, SIAA's CEO. "After a first quarter announcing the most new members in any first quarter in our history, 432 new Member Agencies joined our ranks in 2012 - our 5th consecutive year with over 400 members signed. Captive agents looking to break free and open their own independent agency as well as established small to mid-sized agencies continue to recognize the value of access to major reputable carriers and the agency development resources that SIAA membership provides. Over the past thirty years we have developed a model that works regardless of the economic climate, signing over 4300 members along the way."

    Masiello went on to say, "Agencies that see value in development & education, access to program and specialty markets, marketing assistance (including lead generation), automation discounts, and more recognize SIAA as the total solution to the challenge of agency success. We've spent three decades getting it right and our new member agencies reap the benefits."

    SIAA members created more than $680 million in new premium growth in 2012.

    December's new members include:

    East:
    Webb Financial Services of Dover, DE
    PYT Insurance of Lehighton, PA
    Germain Family Insurance Agency of Manchester, NH

    Midwest:
    Heritage Insurance Services of Coldwater, OH
    Nick Pizano Insurance of Maple Grove, MN
    Cason Agency of Versailles, MO
    Max Pizano Insurance of Albertville, MN
    Lincolnway Insurance Services of Schererville, IN
    Brian Jacobi Agency of Howards Grove, WI

    West:
    BCBR Insurance Agency of Springville, UT
    Pickett Insurance & Financial Services of Chandler, AZ
    First Option Insurance of Heber City, UT
    Massive Insurance & Financial Services of Pasadena, CA
    M.L. Peterson Insurance of Ventura, CA
    Golden Hope Financial Services of Santa Clara, CA
    GLJ Insurance Group of Mesa, AZ
    Colorado River Insurance of Fort Mohave, AZ

    Southeast:
    Seguro Insurance of Homewood, AL
    Cromley & Associates of Sarasota, FL
    Cornerstone Insurance Services of Nashville, TN
    Rentz & Rentz Insurance of Baxley, GA
    Commercial Insurance Associates of Winter Park, FL
    Commonwealth Benefit Administrators of Williamstown, KY
    Premier Financial Group of Chattanooga, TN
    Burkholder Company of Campbellsville, KY

    SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance
    For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


    HIIG REORGANIZES DOMESTIC UNDERWRITING OPERATIONS

    HOUSTON – January 7, 2013
    Houston International Insurance Group (HIIG) announced today the reorganization of its domestic underwriting operations which going forward will be re-branded under the symbol HIIG.

    The following divisions have been created to better identify our specialty products offered:

    HIIG Construction – Crane & Rigging; Underground Contractors; and Heavy Transport
    HIIG Energy – Mining; and Oil & Gas
    HIIG Professional – Community Banks; Allied Health; and in the future E&O and D&O
    HIIG Specialty – Hospitality; Security Guards; Texas WC / Non-Subscription

    These Divisions will underwrite directly on behalf of HIIG subsidiary insurance companies, which are rated A- (Excellent) or better by A.M. Best:

    Houston Specialty Insurance Company – Surplus Lines
    Oklahoma Specialty Insurance Company – Surplus Lines (Texas only)
    Imperium Insurance Company – Admitted
    Great Midwest Insurance Company – Admitted

    HIIG underwriting agency subsidiary Bunker Hill Underwriters has been renamed HIIG Underwriters and represents non-affiliated insurance companies and Lloyds Underwriters in certain classes of business that compliment overall underwriting operations.

    Stephen L. Way, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of HIIG, said, "As we expand the products we offer, the HIIG brand will be synonymous with creative solutions and efficient service."

    HIIG is an insurance holding company based in Houston, Texas with offices in Atlanta, Georgia; Birmingham, Alabama; Chicago, Illinois; and Dallas, Texas.

    Contact:
    L. Byron Way, SVP / Mark Rattner, SVP
    Houston International Insurance Group
    (713) 935-4800


    HIIG ANNOUNCES THE ACQUISITION OF AXIOM INSURANCE MANAGERS

    HOUSTON – January 7, 2013
    Houston International Insurance Group (HIIG) announced today that they have completed their acquisition of Axiom Insurance Managers.

    Based in Chicago, Illinois, Axiom is an underwriting manager specializing in the hospitality industry including restaurants, clubs, bars, taverns, hotels and family entertainment centers. With the added resources that HIIG will provide, annual premium is expected to grow to more than $50 million over the next few years.

    Effective immediately, Axiom will be merged into HIIG Specialty and continue to write on Houston Specialty Insurance Company paper. Dan Djordjevic, the founder of Axiom, will stay on as Executive Vice President of HIIG Specialty.

    Dan Djordjevic said, “The team at Axiom is pleased to join HIIG, a dynamic and highly-rated specialty carrier and we are excited about the benefits this transaction will bring particularly for our brokers and clients.”

    Stephen L. Way, Chief Executive Officer of HIIG, said, "Dan and his very experienced team will bring a seasoned book of hospitality business that will help us expand the specialty products that we offer.”

    HIIG is an insurance holding company based in Houston, Texas, with offices in Atlanta, Georgia Birmingham, Alabama; Chicago, Illinois; and Dallas, Texas.

    Contact:
    L. Byron Way, SVP / Mark Rattner, SVP
    Houston International Insurance Group
    (713) 935-4800


    Insurance Wholesaler Russell Bond & Co.

    Insurance Wholesaler Russell Bond & Co., Inc. has acquired nationwide insurance Purchasing Group: Independent Garage and Towing Contractors Services, Inc. (IGTC) also of Buffalo. The purchasing group specializes in coverage for the Garage and Towing Industry and is admitted and available in most all states.

    Most all members of the staff of IGTC have joined Russell Bond operating as a separate underwriting unit, including Ms. Jeanne Allaire, Vice President; Skip Mulvey, Senior Account Executive; Christie Miller, Account Executive and new assistant Jill Gmitrowski.

    Russell Bond & Co., Inc. is an Insurance Wholesaler headquartered in Buffalo NY. Founded in 1950 the firm maintains binding authorities and brokerage access for Standard, Specialty, and Surplus Lines through admitted and non-admitted markets for clients throughout the USA.

    The firm also maintains offices in Hamilton, NJ and Westfield, MA.


    Agency Network of Kentucky Celebrates 15th Anniversary

    November 26th, 2012 - Hampton, NH: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Agency Network of Kentucky of Lexington, KY as an SIAA Master Agency.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With fifteen years of successful growth, Agency Network of Kentucky has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for nearly 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    "Our alliance is designed to help insurance agents at all stages." said Agency Network of Kentucky Vice President Ben Cowan. "Our members have the opportunity to earn profit sharing, avail themselves of vendor discounts and marketing tools, and utilize years of agency expertise. We continue to be selective in accepting new members but welcome the opportunity to talk with all agencies including captives, whether existing or start up, to see how we can help each other be successful. This approach has served us well and will continue to do so in the future."

    Agency Network of Kentucky continues to grow by mentoring new independent agency owners and transitioning captive agencies that have terminated their direct relationships realizing the limited opportunities for growth. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 1997. With a 68-county territory encompassing eastern Kentucky, they are one of the more significant independent agency groups in the region. For more information about Agency Network of Kentucky, please visit www.ankonline.com.

    The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,300 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    DVIC partners with The National Alliance

    FORT MYERS, Fla. (Nov. 13, 2012) - Disabled Veterans Insurance Careers, dedicated to helping disabled U.S. veterans by providing new opportunities for training and employment in the insurance industry, has partnered with The National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research to help educate and train disabled veterans for meaningful insurance careers.

    The National Alliance, based in Austin, Texas, will provide technical training materials and instruction in the areas of personal lines insurance, agency management operations and risk management, leading to one or more of the distinguished designations - Certified Insurance Service Representative (CISR) and Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC). With 44 years of experience and leadership in insurance education, The National Alliance is most qualified to provide comprehensive, relevant and practical training. An emphasis on cross-selling, up-selling and personal lines account review will be included in this instruction.

    The National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research is a pioneer and early adopter of the unique distance learning format of providing blended learning for insurance and risk management professionals. The company advances the profession by providing insurance and risk management professionals of every experience level with integrated, practical continuing education, timely research and designation opportunities. For additional information, visit www.TheNationalAlliance.com.

    Disabled Veterans Insurance Careers is a nonprofit organization with the mission to educate-train and generate meaningful employment opportunities for physically disabled veterans who will excel at proactively cross-selling personal lines insurance products on behalf of leading independent insurance agencies. For additional information, call 239-433-8523 or visit www.DVIC.us.


    Target Markets Awards first CPL Designations

    Wilmington, DE - November 2012 - The Target Markets Program Administrator Association (TMPAA) announced today that it had awarded 9 of its members the first Certified Programs Leader (CPL) Designation during their 12th Annual Summit held October 29-31, in Scottsdale, Arizona.

    Recipients of the Designation completed and passed 12 required Target University courses, and met program and industry experience expectations set out by the Association. "The mission of Target University and the CPL Designation is to further promote Best Practices in program administration, and recognize the specialized skill sets of Program Administrators," stated Jeremy Hitzig - TMPAA President. "The University was developed through the efforts of the TMPAA Board and committee of TMPAA members who served as advisors on course development."

    CPL Designation recipients included Greg Thompson - THOMCO, Kim Ayala - Landscape Contractors Insurance Services, Joseph Peloso, Penelope Thomas, Michael Bachman and Deborah Francis from Liberty International Underwriters, and Jeffrey Gauthier, Carolyn Miller, Julie Roberts from Great American Insurance Company.

    Greg Thompson, Past President and University Dean discussed the merits of the CPL Designation, "The Association's Board is very excited to see the completion of our University culminating in awards for the first CPL Designations. The required university courses all deal with crucial aspects of successful program administration. The coursework is rigorous, but presented in a unique and engaging format by experts currently working in this industry segment. Our first 9 recipients demonstrated their mastery in these areas, and are also individuals who have a solid resume of work in programs. It was an honor to be associated with this effort and to award the designation to this group of Association Members."

    Photograph of the 2012 Inaugural Class of CPL Designees is available on the Association website www.targetmarkets.com

    The Target Markets Program Administrators Association is an organization dedicated to the unique challenges of insurance program administration. The TMPAA's mission is to help Program Administrators conduct their business more efficiently, with greater proficiency and profitability. The organization provides its membership with an array of business and educational services including access to program carrier decision makers, best practice information and recognition, Target University, Program Marketing and Distribution, Target Programs (online portal), Industry Studies and two annual Member Meetings.

    Program Administrator / MGA's interested in learning more about the TMPAA, can visit the Association Website at www.targetmarkets.com or contact Ray Scotto - Executive Director - at (877) 347-5700 E-mail address: ray.scotto@targetmkts.com


    Acquisition of GUARD by National Indemnity Company

    (a Subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc.) Completed

    On October 25th, GUARD Insurance Group, Inc., was acquired by National Indemnity Company, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK.A and BRK.B). All necessary regulatory approvals, including that of the Pennsylvania Department of Insurance, were received in advance of the closing.

    According to GUARD CEO and President Sy Foguel, “We are very proud that such a well-respected, world-class Group was interested in purchasing us. With the operational and financial support of our new parent company, we believe that GUARD can become a national presence within the marketplace within a few years.”

    GUARD is a long-time specialist in providing workers’ compensation insurance to small- to mid-sized businesses and currently insures over 60,000 in 29 states. The organization is licensed to write policies in 46 jurisdictions. Over the past few years, GUARD also began offering additional complementary property and liability lines for that same targeted market niche. Specifically, the Company provides Businessowner’s Policy (BOP), Commercial Umbrella/Excess, and Commercial Auto coverage in select states.

    Chief Operating Officer Carl Witkowski has noted, “GUARD was very successful and profitable during some difficult years in the recent past. Despite a long and deep recession and challenging period within our industry, we managed to expand and produce good financial results. With the economy slowly turning around and a strong parent company to assist us, we are very optimistic about our prospects for profitable expansion and growth.”

    In 2012, GUARD was named a “Ward’s Top 50” performer – a prestigious distinction that places the Group among the top property and casualty companies nationally. GUARD’s A- (Excellent) A.M. Best Company rating was placed under review with positive implications when the sale to National Indemnity Company was announced in late August. At that time, A.M. Best Company stated, “Post completion of the acquisition, A.M. Best believes NICO [National Indemnity Company] will provide substantial operational and financial support to GUARD.”

    Headquartered in northeastern Pennsylvania, GUARD was founded in 1983 and operated as an independent carrier until being acquired by Clal Insurance Enterprises Holdings Ltd. in 2007. GUARD’s new parent, National Indemnity Company, was founded in 1940 and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. National Indemnity Company is a worldwide provider of specialized insurance and reinsurance coverages. Berkshire Hathaway Inc. is a holding company owning a number of diverse business activities, including property and casualty insurance and reinsurance. Warren Buffett is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

    GUARD is projected to write $400 million in premiums in 2012 and is represented by over 700 independent agents. The Company currently employs over 300 people with approximately three quarters of them working out of the home office.


    Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance Celebrates 15th Anniversary

    November 13th, 2012 - Hampton, NH: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance of Allentown, PA as an SIAA Master Agency.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With fifteen years of successful growth, Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for nearly 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    "Our alliance is designed to help independent insurance agents grow and succeed in a very competitive business." said Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance President Eric Blew. "We provide them the opportunity to partner with outstanding insurance companies who are committed to serving personal and business insurance customers with innovative products, services, and competitive prices. Along with our agency management experience on the local level, SIAA provides valuable resources to help the members of PIA to continue or start their independent insurance agency by making them instantly big as part of a respected national organization."

    Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance continues to grow by mentoring new independent agency owners and transitioning captives that have terminated their captive relationships realizing the limited opportunities for growth. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 1997. With territory covering 7 counties in southeastern Pennsylvania, they are one of the largest independent agency groups in the region. For more information about Pennsylvania Insurance Alliance, please visit www.piasiaa.com.

    The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,300 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Utah Insurance Agency Alliance Celebrates 10th Anniversary

    November 15th, 2012 - Hampton, NH and Lehi, UT: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Utah Insurance Agency Alliance as an SIAA Master Agency.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With a decade of successful growth, Utah Insurance Agency Alliance has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for nearly 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    "Our alliance is designed to help insurance agents at all stages." said Utah Insurance Agency Alliance President Derick Wolsleger. "We provide the tools and help them navigate through the difficulties that often prevent a smaller or new independent insurance agency from succeeding. Along with our own agency management experience on the local level, SIAA's national resources help P&C Agents, direct writers/captive agents, and producers continue or start their independent insurance agency by making them instantly big as part of our organization."

    Utah Insurance Agency Alliance continues to grow by mentoring new independent agency owners and transitioning captives that have terminated their captive relationships realizing the limited opportunities for growth. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 2002. With territory covering over 93% of the state, they are the largest independent agency group in Utah. For more information about Utah Insurance Agency Alliance, please visit www.uiaa.net.

    The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,300 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Insurance Agency Alliance Celebrates 15th Anniversary

    November 19th, 2012 - Hampton, NH: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Insurance Agency Alliance of Pottsville, PA as an SIAA Master Agency.

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With fifteen years of successful growth, Insurance Agency Alliance has achieved a significant milestone for which our Master Agencies strive. Their longevity affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere alliance of independent insurance agencies across the country. Our model has worked for nearly 30 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    "Our alliance is designed to help insurance agents at all stages." said Insurance Agency Alliance Vice President Ed Winkelbauer. "From direct writers, life and financial services agencies, and producers without a vesting in their book looking to open their own independent agencies, to established agencies in need of markets and stability, Insurance Agency Alliance membership provides the tools for success. Along with our own agency management experience on the local level - Our retail agency, Richard B. Ryon Insurance, has serviced the insurance needs of this area for over 65 years - SIAA's national resources help agents continue or start their independent insurance agency by making them instantly big as part of our organization."

    Insurance Agency Alliance continues to grow by mentoring new independent agency owners and transitioning captives that have terminated their captive relationships realizing the limited opportunities for growth. They have been a Master Agency partner of SIAA since 1997. With territory covering 20 counties in northeastern Pennsylvania, they are one of the largest independent agency groups in the region. For more information about Insurance Agency Alliance, please visit www.insuranceagencyalliance.com.

    The SIAA (Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance) concept originated in New England in 1983 where many local insurance agencies were finding it difficult to receive carrier appointments, start new insurance agencies, compete against larger insurance agencies, and receive profit sharing.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to providing significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,300 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Ironshore, Distiguished Programs & NSU Acquistion

    New York, NY, November 1, 2012–IDP Holdings LLC (“IDP”) announced the acquisition of the hospitality business of National Specialty Underwriters, Inc. (“NSU”), the Bellevue, Washington-based specialty commercial insurance program manager. As part of the transaction, IDP also purchased NSU’s Certus Claims Administration, which is the company’s specialized hospitality claims handling division. IDP is a joint venture acquisition vehicle of Ironshore Holdings (U.S.) Inc. (“Ironshore”) and Distinguished Programs Group LLC (“Distinguished Programs”) that focuses on the Managing General Underwriter and Program Manager segments of the commercial insurance distribution business.

    “NSU’s leading reputation in the hospitality sector made this an outstanding initial investment for IDP” said Jeremy Hitzig, CEO of both IDP and Distinguished Programs. “The strength of NSU’s professional team, product lineup and carrier support is unrivalled in the hospitality industry. We look forward to bringing additional value through the distribution and underwriting capabilities of IDP’s joint venture partners, Distinguished Programs and Ironshore.”

    Shaun Kelly, President of Ironshore and Chairman of IDP, noted that the NSU acquisition underscores IDP’s mission of building a premier specialty program manager dedicated to meeting the unique coverage needs of niche markets within the U.S. “We believe this will reaffirm our positioning as the solution of choice for other program managers needing growth capital or seeking an exit strategy” he added.

    Chris Randall, CEO of NSU commented, “We see IDP as being an ideal home for our hospitality business. Through its joint venture partners, the company has a strong track record and an exceptional reputation for understanding and meeting the needs of brokers and niche markets. We are confident that our clients will be well served by this organization.” Following the sale of its hospitality operations, the specialty healthcare division of NSU will continue to operate independently under Randall’s ongoing leadership.

    NSU provides brokers with a powerful combination of hospitality-specific coverage, risk management and claims administration through Certus. Eligible classes of business include limited, full-service and luxury hotels, resorts and casinos. NSU is the longest running program of its kind in the hospitality sector and is known for its casualty and umbrella program with market leading limits up to $300 million provided by a consortium of carriers rated “A-” or above.

    About Ironshore
    Ironshore provides broker-sourced specialty property and casualty insurance coverages for varying risks on a global basis through its multiple international platforms. The Ironshore group of companies is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M.Best with a Financial Size Category of Class XIII. Ironshore’s Pembroke Syndicate 4000 operates within Lloyd’s where the market rating is A (Excellent) by A.M. Best and A+ (Strong) from both Standard & Poor’s and Fitch. For more information, please visit: www.ironshore.com

    About Distinguished Programs
    Distinguished Programs is a leading national insurance program manager focused on niche products for select business segments, including real estate, construction, small mercantile and museums. Distinguished Programs subsidiary companies include ReSource Pro, the leading business process outsourcing company for the insurance industry. For information, visit: www.distinguished.com


    SIAA Grows by 40 Agencies in October 2012

    November 9th, 2012 - Hampton, NH: The Strategic Insurance Agency Alliance (SIAA) announced the signing of 40 new member agencies in October.

    Of October's signed members, 29 are "start-up" or "scratch" agencies new to the independent agency system, many of them former "captive" agents, bringing new premium dollars and new people into the system. SIAA helped create 299 new agencies in 2011 from a total of 412 newly signed members. 241 have been created so far in 2012.

    "We are excited to be able to grow at a steady and aggressive pace." said Jim Masiello, SIAA's CEO. "After a first quarter announcing the most new members in any first quarter in our history, we are pacing for continued record-breaking growth. This is further evidence of how our model works irrespective of the economic climate."

    SIAA members created more than $780 million in new premium growth in 2011 - their third straight year over $750 million - and reached their 4000th signed Independent Strategic Member earlier this year.

    October's new members include:

    East:
    Farah A. Evenson Insurance of Wethersfield, CT
    Pioneer City Insurance of Carbondale, PA
    Richard Schrade of Saratoga Springs, NY
    Montemarano & Schwartz Group of Mineola, NY
    GL Kreiner Insurance of Spring Grove, PA
    K D Smith Insurance of Allentown, PA
    Northern Chesapeake Insurance Services of Bel Air, MD

    Midwest:
    Insurance Services Corporation of Fenton, MI
    The Wright Agency of Grantsburg, WI
    F&S Diversified Services of Omaha, NE
    McEldowney Agency of Flossmoor, IL
    Premier Insurance Associates of Edwardsville, IL
    Empson Insurance Agency of Scottsburg, IN
    Multiline Insurance Agency of Indianapolis, IN
    South Haven Insurance Agency of Burnsville, MN

    West:
    Andrea Edmundson of Valencia, CA
    Centurywide Insurance Services of San Diego, CA
    Onpoint Insurance Group of St. George, UT
    Allen Insurance Services of Pueblo, CO
    Way West Insurance Agency of Cody, WY

    Southeast:
    Affordable Secure Insurance of Fort Myers, FL
    Donovan Insurance of Jacksonville, FL
    The Wicker Agency of Birmingham, AL
    Mark A. Demont Insurance Agency of Tallahassee, FL
    Business Insurance Solutions of Louisville, KY
    Michael Gray Agency of Birmingham, AL
    All Axcess Insurance of Lakewood Ranch, FL
    Insurance Dealer Connect of Naples, FL
    Jones & Taylor Insurance of Gaffney, SC

    South Central:
    O'Neal Insurance Agency of Ratcliff, AR
    Precept Insurance Services of Flower Mound, TX
    The Gregory Agency of Van Buren, AR

    Since it's inception in 1995, SIAA has signed over 4,250 new members.

    SIAA is dedicated to the creation, retention and growth of the Independent Insurance Agency distribution system. SIAA provides independent agencies with the company access necessary to become instantly BIG. For more information on SIAA visit www.siaa.net.

    The National Insurance Agency Alliance For additional information, contact James Lane, Senior Marketing Manager, at jamesl@siaa.net.


    Hudson Valley Agency Alliance Signs 50th Member Agency

    November 9th, 2012 - Hampton, NH & Rye Brook, NY: SIAA, Inc. - the largest Alliance of Independent Property & Casualty Insurance Agencies in the country - is proud to announce that Master Agency partner Hudson Valley Agency Alliance has signed its 50th Member Agency, adding to the national total of over 4250 signed members.

    "We are proud to welcome TransAtlantic Financial Group of Mamaroneck, New York as the newest Independent Strategic Member of our Alliance," announced HVAA Vice President Carla Moccia-Paribello. "As a newly created independent agency, they stand to benefit from access to our strategic partners, as well our decades of experience in agency operations including 14 as an SIAA Certified Master Agency. Our retail shop, The Rollins Agency, has serviced the insurance needs of New York since 1910, and with a staff of over 40 is now one of the leading insurance agencies in the metropolitan area. We are dedicated to providing local independent insurance agents with the opportunity to flourish by opening access to benefits typically available only to large regional agencies producing significant volumes of insurance business."

    According to SIAA Chairman & CEO Jim Masiello, "With the signing of TransAtlantic Financial Group, HVAA has reached a significant milestone to which our Master Agencies across the country strive. It's this model of locally-based growth that affirms SIAA's standing as the premiere Alliance of independent insurance agencies in the country. Our model has worked for 17 years now - through soft and hard markets, economic downturns, extreme competition - virtually all conditions."

    Hudson Valley Agency Alliance became an SIAA Master Agency in 1998. With territory covering Westchester, Dutchess, Putnam, and Rockland counties, they are one of the largest independent agency groups in the Northeast. For more information on HVAA, visit www.hvaallc.com.

    SIAA is a national alliance with billions in combined profitable premium. SIAA utilizes its stability and strength through traditional and alternative market channels, as well as an online insurance presence for the purpose of providing insurance consumers with competitive choices in addition to offering significant profit and equity appreciation opportunities for SIAA Member Agencies. This national alliance of insurance agencies has engaged more than 4,250 members. For additional information about SIAA, visit www.siaa.net.


    Philadelphia Insurance, Tokio Marine Group donate $195,000 to Sandy Relief

    PHLY and CEO Jamie Maguire join four Group companies to support Red Cross relief

    Bala Cynwyd, PA, November 6, 2012 - Philadelphia Insurance Companies (PHLY) and Chairman and CEO Jamie Maguire are partnering with four other Tokio Marine Group companies to donate $195,000 to the American Red Cross to assist with Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.

    PHLY and Mr. Maguire are each donating $25,000 to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. This fund enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling, and other assistance to victims of disasters. Mr. Maguire serves on the Board of Directors of the American Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter.

    “Seeing the images of destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy bring the devastation I saw first-hand in Haiti closer to home,” shared Mr. Maguire, who was part of a relief mission to Haiti following the earthquake there in 2010. “On behalf of Philadelphia Insurance Companies, I extend our thoughts and prayers to everyone affected by this tragedy. I’d also like to salute all of the Red Cross volunteers, as well as the first responders and everyone helping victims of this storm.”

    “Whenever the Red Cross is in need, Philadelphia Insurance Companies and Jamie Maguire always step up. Whether it is to provide disaster relief for Haiti, for Japan, for Hurricane Sandy and here locally, we can always count on their support,” said Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes, CEO of the American Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter.

    Tokio Marine Holdings, the parent company of Philadelphia Insurance, is donating $50,000. PHLY’s sister companies in North America are also pledging support. Tokio Marine Management, Inc., based out of New York, is donating $25,000 and will match employee donations. Delaware-based Delphi Financial Group is donating $50,000 and First Insurance Company of Hawaii is donating $10,000 and will match employee contributions up to $5,000.

    PHLY’s Founder and Chairman Emeritus James J. Maguire, will also donate $10,000 from the Maguire Foundation. The contributions from PHLY, four Tokio Marine Group companies, and the Maguire Foundation total $195,000.

    As a leading provider of insurance to the non-profit and human service industry, PHLY has a long history of supporting disaster relief. The Company and its employees raised $129,000 for the Red Cross Haiti relief fund and more than $195,000 for the Red Cross Japan tsunami and earthquake relief fund. Since 1980, Philadelphia Insurance Companies has donated more than ten million dollars to various charitable organizations and missions.

    About PHLY
    Philadelphia Insurance Companies, a member of the Tokio Marine Group, designs, markets, and underwrites commercial property/casualty and professional liability insurance products incorporating value added coverages and services for select industries. In operation since 1962, the Company, whose commercial lines insurance subsidiaries are rated "A++" (Superior) by A.M. Best Company and "A+" for counterparty credit and financial strength by Standard & Poor’s, is nationally recognized as a member of Ward's Top 50 and National Underwriter’s Top 100. The organization has 45 offices strategically located across the United States to provide superior service. To locate the office nearest you or for more information, visit us on the web at www.phly.com.


    Program Business Market Hits $24.7 Billion in Gross Written Premiums

    Wilmington, DE-The Target Markets Program Administrators Association (TMPAA) released the results of its annual research to document the size, characteristics, growth and other base-line information about the program insurance market. The "State of Program Business Study" was presented at the Association's 12th Annual Summit in Scottsdale, AZ.

    The study pegged the program administration market in 2011 at $24.7 billion in premiums up from $22.6 billion in 2010. The 2010 market figures were revised to reflect the higher level of response in the survey and research completed this year. The survey identified a potential 950 program administrators administering an estimated 2,000 individual programs.

    Premium revenues increased 5 percent. Program Administrators reported an 84 percent renewal rate in 2011, unchanged from 2012. The research consisted of two surveys - one distributed to Program Administrators and a second distributed to insurance carriers that use the program distribution channel.

    Response from program administrators more doubled this year with 190 program administrators responding to the survey. The question topics for the 2012 survey were designed and reviewed by a committee of TMPAA member Program Administrators and Carriers, the TMPAA Board, Advisen and the New Street Group (TMPAA Special Consultant for the Program Business Study).

    The research study and survey was conducted by Advisen, the commercial insurance research and data analytics firm. The analysis included a survey of program administrators, carriers and managing general agents. Additional data and information was drawn from the Advisen databases of retail brokers, managing general agents and underwriters and wholesale brokers.

    The key results of the study were:

    • The program space continues to be a booming business despite the significant headwinds faced by the overall P&C industry.
    • Program administrators and carriers are optimistic about prospects for future growth.
    • There is mismatch in the merger & acquisition picture as there are more buyers than sellers.
    • Program administrators and insurers are one in their view that underwriting profitability is what matters most when establishing a successful program.

    The TMPAA defines "Program Business" as insurance products targeted to a particular niche market or class, generally representing a group of similar risks placed with one carrier. Administration is done through Program Specialists who have developed an expertise in that market. Administrative responsibilities are negotiated between the Specialist and Carrier, but would include underwriting selection, binding, issuing, billing, and often times marketing, premium collections, data gathering, claims management/loss control and possibly risk sharing. Program Specialists typically target their niches through differentiation either in product, risk management services, delivery mechanism or price. Specialists can distribute these programs on a retail or wholesale basis.

    The research was sponsored by TMPAA member companies Scottsdale Insurance Company and Western Heritage Insurance Company.

    Program Specialists / MGA's interested in learning more about the TMPAA can visit the Association website at www.targetmarkets.com , or contact Executive Director Ray Scotto at ray.scotto@targetmkts.com

    An Executive Summary and power point presentation of the report will be available on the TMPAA website, www.targetmarkets.com.

     



    2011 CONTRIBUTORS TO THE INSURANCE MARKETPLACE CYBERCAST

    INSURANCE COMPANIES  |  MANAGING GENERAL AGENTS

    PROGRAM ADMINISTRATORS  |  SURETY COMPANIES  |  WHOLESALE BROKERS

     


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