Independent Insurance Agents of America President William M. Houston, CPCU, ARM, today bestowed special IIAA Presidential Citations to several deserving individuals for their outstanding contributions on behalf of the independent agency system.
The honorees were: Independent Insurance Agents of Georgia Executive Director Gould Hagler was honored for his exceptional service to independent agents on the state and national levels where he is a proven leader.
As the sole state executive on IIAA’s government affairs committee, Hagler has provided invaluable insight and guidance on many important issues.
“His contributions to the committee’s deliberations, particularly on tax and market access issues, bring a unique perspective to the table,” Houston said.
Andy Bell, chairman of IIAA’s for-profit subsidiary-Member Services Inc. (MSI), was lauded for his dedicated efforts to make the MSI Board of Directors a more business-focused entity.
“Andy is a strong leader with a keen business vision; attributes that will help position MSI for long-term success,” Houston said. Under Bell’s guidance, the MSI board has refocused the for-profit operations so that it meets dual goals: Providing member agents tools that will boost their bottom line, while also creating critical non-dues revenue for the Big “I” and its state affiliates.
Executive Committee member Cloyce Anders was praised for his dedication and commitment to independent agents and IIAA as he represents their interests with IIAA’s errors & omissions provider-ERC.
Over the past year, Anders has been tirelessly working with to make improvements to the program. “Cloyce has represented the Association’s, the states’ and the membership’s position with unmatched honor and integrity. There is no one who has a more complete and comprehensive understating of each state’s standing with the E&O program,” Houston said.
Wally Gardner, vice president of marketing at Chubb Group of Insurance Companies, was singled out for his dedication as an advocate at the company for independent insurance agents. In his 25 years with Chubb, Wally and the company have participated in all of the Big “I’s” company-supported programs.
“Chubb is the largest supporter of IIAA programs and an early adopter of many of our major initiatives, such as Big ‘I’ Markets, the Virtual University,” Houston said. “Wally also was instrumental in granting young agents access to Chubb products. Much of this commitment is an extension of Wally’s strong belief in independent agents.”
Mike Dineen, vice president of legislative affairs for Kemper Insurance, was honored for his strong and unequaled support of IIAA in Washington, D.C. among company representatives. Because of the close working relationship between IIAA and Mike, Kemper was the first carrier to sponsor the IIAA’s legislative conference.
“Mike works closely with our government affairs team and is a vocal advocate of independent agents both on Capitol Hill and within the industry,” Houston said. “Mike is highly respected by other industry lobbyists and members of Congress, and he is one of the most effective industry spokesmen in the nation’s capital.”
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