Agency Checklists’ look at the latest hiring news as well as the awards and accolades achieved this week from both in and around the Massachusetts insurance industry…
Appointment – The Hanover Insurance Company
The Hanover Insurance Group Appoints Frank M. Baron to Lead Alternative Markets Unit
announced that Frank M. Baron has been appointed president of Alternative Markets, a newly formed business unit within the company’s domestic specialty group. In this role, Baron will lead the company’s specialty programs, excess and surplus (E&S) and specialty brokerage businesses, helping The Hanover expand its business across each of these specialties and providing a more seamless solution for its agent partners.
Baron brings a broad range of specialty experience in property and casualty insurance. Most recently, Baron served as executive vice president at Zurich, where he headed up the company’s Management Solutions Group. Prior to that, he held various leadership roles at American International Group (AIG) and Reliance National Insurance during his 30 year career in the industry. Baron is a graduate of New York Institute of Technology, holds a Master of Business Administration degree from University of Phoenix and a Master of Science degree from Boston University.
“We are pleased to have Frank join our organization,” said Bryan J. Salvatore, president of specialty at The Hanover. “He brings a wealth of experience and will leverage the strengths within our broad and innovative capabilities to deliver programs, captive and fronting solutions and non-admitted placements, making it easier and more efficient for our partners to better serve their specialty clients.”
The Hanover is committed to helping its partners meet their customers’ increasingly complex insurance needs through Alternative Markets, coordinating and combining coverages across its business units to provide the most responsive insurance protection possible.
“I am excited to join The Hanover and lead the new Alternative Markets unit,” said Baron. “The Hanover has earned a strong reputation among independent agents and brokers. I am looking forward to working with the domestic specialty team to continue to drive underwriting and operational excellence for our agent partners and customers.”
For more information about The Hanover’s specialty business, please visit Agent Solutions or contact a local Hanover representative.
Retirement – Bates Insurance Agency
Changing of the Guard at Bates Insurance Agency
Andrea Bates McGrath, CFP, CDFA, President of Bates Insurance Agency is proud to announce that after 22 years at the helm and 30 years with the agency she is stepping down as President and her long time employees and family members will be taking over.
Joan R. Bates, CISR and Daniel J. Bates III (Dapper), CRIS will be taking over the reins of running the agency where they will continue the family tradition of providing exceptional professionalism and customer service as well as continuing their long-standing commitment to the Medford community.
Bates Insurance Agency Inc. was established in 1976 by Daniel J. Bates Sr. and I’m sure he would be thrilled that the agency is still going strong 42 years later and it’s still owned and operated by his family. Joan and Dapper have been running the agency for the last several years so it is only fitting that they receive the recognition and credit for all their hard work and assume leadership roles.
Andrea will continue to operate Bates Financial and develop her financial planning business as well as expand on her new focus as a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst. In her new role she will provide financial expertise before, during, and after divorce for individuals and couples who are seeking a more amicable, civilized, and respectful divorce and help those clients make better financial decisions and build a solid future.
Awards – MAPFRE Insurance
MAPFRE Insurance was recently recognized with the prestigious ValChoice® award for #1 Best Value for auto insurance in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The company received a score of 92 out of 100 in ValChoice’s analysis for the 2016/2017 award. Only one company in each state is selected for the annual ValChoice #1 Best Value Award, and the winner is determined based on a quantitative analysis of unbiased data from each state’s department of insurance regarding customer service, claims handling and value.
“Our mission is to build relationships based on trust,” said Patrick McDonald, CEO, Northeast Region, MAPFRE Insurance. “We are the largest private passenger automobile, homeowners’ and commercial automobile insurer in Massachusetts because we continually strive to provide the highest quality products and exceptional customer service.”
“The ValChoice Best Value Award is the most objective in the industry. I founded ValChoice to bring transparency to the insurance industry and help consumers find the protection and value they deserve from the insurance they must buy,” said Dan Karr, Founder and CEO of ValChoice. “It’s great to see MAPFRE Insurance, headquartered locally in Webster, Massachusetts, achieving such excellence in service, claims handling and value. The level of excellence MAPFRE Insurance has achieved is something in which both the company, and the communities they serve, can take great pride.”
Link to Massachusetts recognition:
Announcement – Boston Mutual Life Insurance Company
Boston Mutual Life Insurance Company Announces Job Rotation Program
National Insurance Solutions Provider Introduces New Talent and Organizational Development Initiatives to Support Ongoing Company Growth
Boston Mutual Life Insurance Company, a national provider of insurance solutions for individuals and at the workplace, today took another step in its long-term strategic plan to support its growth efforts and invest in its employees. As part of this strategy, the company is introducing a new job rotation program to offer additional professional growth opportunities for employees as it builds out its talent enhancement initiatives. As a result, in the first cycle of the program, three employees were appointed to the Human Resources (HR) department to expand the department into a talent and organizational development area.
The program will create professional growth opportunities across the organization by matching high-performing talent with current and emerging organizational needs in a variety of roles. In launching this program, the company will expand its capacity to model future-state leadership behaviors, deliver on the commitment to play to the company’s strengths, and open up pathways for experiential learning within Boston Mutual.
“Our new job rotation program will extend its benefits across the whole company, and so we chose to launch the program with Human Resources because of its critical impact across the entire organization,” said Paul A. Quaranto, Jr., Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President at Boston Mutual Life Insurance Company. “With our ongoing investments in our people, and the opportunities this program will provide for employees, we’ll continue to accelerate our growth and be well positioned to maintain our commitment to our policyholders and producers.”
As the first participants in the new job rotation program, three employees joined the current HR team. Christine Coughlin was promoted to Vice President and appointed along with Nick Barishian as Vice President, Employee Success and Engagement, HR Business Partner. They will oversee the new HR department, which will support HR and talent development needs for the company’s different business areas. Kerri Miller, currently in HR, and Kayleigh Correira were both promoted to Director, Employee Success and Engagement, and will assist Barishian and Coughlin in executing the department’s activities.
Boston Mutual launched BML University, its formalized learning organization program for its employees, in early 2017. Following a number of new initiatives last year, including company-wide personal and professional development opportunities, the introduction of this new job rotation initiative is the latest phase in the program.
Scholarship Opportunity – Deadline August 1st
Reminder – The Frances R. Soderberg Scholarship
Soderberg Insurance Services, Inc. is offering an educational scholarship dedicated in memory of the agency’s co-founder Frances Soderberg. Frances was an active member of the North Shore community for over 50 years. In addition to her commitment to her family, she dedicated her life to improving the lives of those with special needs.
Her youngest daughter Karen was born with Down’s Syndrome. Mrs. Soderberg was instrumental in the integration of recreational and educational programs for children and young adults who are mentally disabled. The co-founder coordinated an instructional tennis program that ran for fifteen years. Mrs. Soderberg, along with the assistance of the special needs participants and North Shore community, organized an annual fundraiser for 25 consecutive years to raise money for the recreational, educational, and social programs for the special needs young adults.
The Frances R. Soderberg Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to an individual who shares her same passion to help those with special needs. This scholarship will be awarded to a current college student, or college bound student who shares her commitment for education of individuals with disabilities and improving their overall quality of life. Mrs. Soderberg believed that integration of the handicapped in society is beneficial to all. When a community embraces the disabled, the community evolves into a more passionate, caring place for all residents.
Preferential consideration will be given to North Shore residents. This resident must be a student pursuing a degree or other higher education/vocational career that will help those with disabilities. The selection committee would also like to see evidence of the student’s involvement with the special needs community. Whether it is in a hospital, school, or community event, the selection committee seeks evidence of the applicant’s commitment to this important line of work.
To be considered for the scholarship, please send a personal statement, including personal and professional goals to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will be accepted through August 1st. The award will be made in September 2018.
Kathryn Soderberg, CPCU