The monthly publication of the National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA) of Alexandria, Va., Professional Agent, will end publication in September and will be replaced by PIA Connection, a monthly newsletter. PIA members will have the opportunity to receive the newsletter in January via e-mail.
According to a statement issued by PIA national president Stephen Watkins Jr., the decision was made “to better enable PIA to deliver concise, up-to-date information in a more timely manner” to its members. The move to close cease publication of the magazine was made on July 11 by the PIA National Board of Directors.
PIA Connection will retain some of the magazine’s features, but will focus on being “concise, with more hard-hitting information,” according to Gary Eberhart, PIA executive vice president.
The industrial and federal affairs staff of the PIA will be responsible for the content of the newsletter and the magazine’s staff of four will be dismissed, according to Eberhart.
Last December, in another National Board vote, a bold step was taken to cancel what would have been the association’s 69th Annual Conference and Exhibition. The event was scheduled for Sept. 8-10, 2000, in New Orleans. Explaining the reason for the convention’s cancellation, Watkins said in a Jan. 24 issue of Insurance Journal that “this wasn’t a decision we made overnight.” Instead, it was a decision that the PIA has been mulling over the past year after less than 5 percent of its membership traveled to Denver, Colo., for 1999’s annual event. No future conventions are planned at this time.
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