IIABA Diversity Task Force to Launch Strategic Action Plan

August 12, 2002

The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) Diversity Task Force will begin implementation of a strategic plan to increase opportunities for multicultural agents and brokers during the New Orleans InfoXchange, according to Chairman Joe Hernandez.

“Multicultural insurance agents and brokers must be well-positioned in the communities they serve to respond to changes in the demographic composition of personal and business customers. This requires attention to assuring that multicultural agents have access to the products and services necessary to accommodate those changes as well as emerging needs,” said Hernandez, vice president/principal of Hamman, Miller, Beauchamp, Debble, Inc., a Long Beach, Calif-based independent agency.

“Involvement by agents and brokers is critical on all levels, and we are pleased to have a forum at the InfoXhcange to invite participation by agents, brokers and companies so that we lay a strong foundation for a successful initiative,” added Hernandez.

The Diversity Task Force will seek strategic alliances with organizations committed to diversity in order to build recognition of its efforts in the industry and the business community. It also will launch a pilot professional development program for minority agents.

The Diversity Task Force will host a luncheon Sept. 21 at the New Orleans InfoXchange to promote its goals, which will be followed by a preview of the professional development series that is designed to position urban and minority- owned agencies for company appointments and successful client relationships, while offering insurance companies greater business opportunities in emerging urban markets.

“The InfoXchange is a great opportunity for agents and companies alike to become involved in the Diversity Task Force. We believe that implementation of this strategic plan will make a positive difference for multicultural agents and their company partners,” added IIABA CEO Robert Rusbuldt.

The Diversity Task Force, a cooperative industry group, is comprised of independent agents and brokers as well as representatives from seven leading insurance companies-CNA, Chubb Group of Insurance Companies, Encompass Insurance, MetLife Auto & Home, Prudential Property & Casualty, SAFECO Insurance Company and Travelers Insurance.

IIABA’s Multicultural Forums, conducted in 1999 and 2000, created awareness of urban market opportunities among insurers and raised the profile of minority- owned independent agencies. The IIABA Diversity Task Force will take this initiative to the next level through implementation of a strategic plan that benefits everyone.

Key goals of the Diversity Task Force include building strategic alliances with multicultural and minority organizations and bringing recognition to its efforts in the insurance industry and business community; increasing the number of company appointments for multicultural agents; and launching a pilot professional development program for minority agents.

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