How did you get into insurance?
My spring semester freshman year at Olivet College, I took a Principles of Insurance class and enjoyed the aspects of learning about different industries and facets of the insurance industry. Professor Mike Hubbel suggested I attend the annual management conference of Gamma Iota Sigma in Columbus, OH later that semester. The Gamma conference was unbelievable.
We had dinner at Scioto Country Club. This was Jack Nicklaus' home golf club growing up. I read Golf My Way by Jack Nicklaus every winter in Michigan to get ready for golf season. To be in the same place as the greatest golfer that ever lived gave me chills up my spine.
We took a tour of Ohio Stadium where the Ohio State University Buckeyes play college football. Since I was born in Toledo, Ohio, I have been a passionate fan of the Buckeyes. This was a dream come true for me.
Lastly, the chapter workshops and the awards ceremony made a lasting impression on me. The Alpha Alpha Chapter won the coveted Bowers Award. I witnessed leaders, Jeff Sandy and Randy Barnes, share experiences for other chapters to emulate. Other chapters included schools like University of Georgia, OSU and Temple. I was amazed that a 700-student school like Olivet College could compete with the major universities across the United States.
Gamma played a very important role in motivating me to be the best student and insurance professional I could be.
What do you love most about insurance?
The people. I have met so many interesting individuals from all walks of life. The insurance industry has such an important role in our economy and society. This attracts dynamic people into our industry. They are well-travelled, cultured, have strong business acumen, intelligent, hard workers and like to have fun.
Why did you get involved with GIS?
Gamma has been such an integral part of my development as a college student and insurance professional. I was on the Executive Committee early in my career, but I struggled with contributing to the Board. The past ten years have been rewarding to see Gamma grow and thrive as a stronger organization. Under Noelle's leadership and direction, Gamma has elevated its game to the next level. I love Macklemore's song "Can't Hold Us." I feel the same way about Gamma now, like the ceiling can't hold us!
What do you hope to see happen with GIS in the near future?
I would like to see 100 chapters with 2,500 to 5,000 student members in the near future. I would like to see an alumni base that gets stronger and stronger in our industry. A strong vibrant student membership along with a supportive alumni base would send shock waves through our industry that the time is now to re-build the foundation of the youth in our industry.
Parting words of wisdom and inspiration...
Wisdom - It is imperative that you choose a career and a company or organization that has a culture that matches your core values and beliefs. The money will come, but choosing the right place out of the gate will give you a head start on the competition!
Inspiration - Don't believe your own BS. You need to balance swagger with being humble. You need to be a lifelong learner. Consistent pursuit of excellence in all of your endeavors, will guide you through your career and life forever.