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2005 Press Releases

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Dec. 28, 2005-Visits to www.TrustedChoice.com, the Web site for the Trusted Choice brand program, are growing at an incredible rate. Compared to all of 2004, the number of visits to the Trusted Choice Web site has more than doubled, and the number of pages viewed has tripled thus far this year.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 22, 2005--With President Bush's signing of S. 467, which modifies and extends the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') has achieved a goal it has worked toward for more than a year. The association, which lobbied hard for the new bill, was a leader in the industry's efforts to get a new bill in place prior to TRIA's expiration on Dec. 31. The bill, a leading priority for the Big 'I' in 2005, extends the needed federal backstop to help insurers cover catastrophic terrorist acts.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Dec. 20, 2005)-At least 32 million U.S. households own insurance policies that aren't right for them, a new national survey conducted by Trusted Choice finds.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 19, 2005--Passage of S. 467, which will modify and extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), is a tremendous step forward in securing the nation's recent economic gains, says the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I').
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 14, 2005--Wesley Bissett, a top executive with the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') has been elected vice president of the National Insurance Producer Registry (NIPR). Bissett, Big 'I' senior vice president for government affairs and state relations, is only the second vice president in NIPR's 10-year history, and the first to come from the agent-broker side of the industry.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 7, 2005--With today's approval of a terrorism backstop extension by the House, the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is now pushing for a speedy House-Senate conference to produce and pass unified legislation. A new backstop is needed to help insure against catastrophic terrorism losses in place of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), which expires Dec. 31.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Dec. 6, 2005-If Grandma got run over by a reindeer, you'd better hope the reindeer wasn't drinking at your holiday party. If a guest or third party is injured in an alcohol-related accident, and the drinking can be linked to your party, you could be held responsible.
Read these tips and help protect you and your loved ones during the holidays. Read about host liability, how to avoid holiday theft, how to stay safe in parking lots, and how to insure your collectibles. This is a great time of year to review your insurance coverage-update anything that has changed over the past year, whether it's a new addition to the house, the family, or your art collection!
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 21-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's President-Elect Alex Soto, CPCU, ARM, of Miami, Fla. based InSource, Inc. testified on a panel entitled Recovering from Katrina and Rita: Exploring the Profound Consequences at the annual meeting of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators' (NCOIL) on Nov. 19.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 18, 2005--Senate approval of language extending the federal terrorism backstop is a big step forward, says the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'). A new backstop is needed to help insure against catastrophic terrorism losses in place of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), which expires Dec. 31.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 18, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') supports today's work by Congress to extend the borrowing authority of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The Senate voted today to take this needed step; House action is pending and expected late Friday.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 17, 2005-Upland Mutual Insurance, Inc., a mutual insurer based in Junction City, Kan., is the 32nd company partner to join the growing Trusted Choice consumer brand movement.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 16, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is pleased that the House Financial Services Committee and Senate Banking Committee are moving ahead on legislation for a federal terrorism backstop, and also that the House committee has taken up reform of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 15, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') strongly supports H.R. 4314, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Revision Act, introduced late Monday by Subcommittee Chairman Richard Baker (R-La.). The bill extends the needed federal backstop to help insurers cover catastrophic terrorist acts while helping the insurance market develop the risk capacity it will need when federal involvement is eventually phased out.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 15, 2005--The Big 'I' strongly supports a bipartisan flood insurance bill introduced today in the House of Representatives containing major reforms that are advocated by independent insurance agents and brokers. The bill contains a number of the 22 reforms suggested last week in a comprehensive flood modernization agenda released by the Big 'I'.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 14, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is pleased that the House Financial Services Committee is moving ahead on legislation for a federal terrorism backstop and reform of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The committee is scheduled to hold a markup Wednesday for the Terrorism Risk Insurance Revision Act and the Flood Insurance Reform and Modernization Act.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 14, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') asks Congress to extend the borrowing authority of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) as quickly as possible. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) distributed a memo to Write-Your-Own companies Friday informing them that lines of credit were suspended until further Congressional action regarding an extension of borrowing authority. With claims expected to exceed $23 billion, extended borrowing authority is necessary in order to meet consumer needs.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 11, 2005--The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') has released a set of 22 recommendations for needed improvements to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The recommendations, if adopted, would modernize coverage, simplify processing and claims and expedite enforcement, and would also bring about many other needed reforms to this vital national program.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 3, 2005--Gen. Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.), will be the keynote speaker at the 2006 Big 'I' National Legislative Conference & Convention. Gen. Powell is scheduled to speak April 28, 2006 at the event's closing general session. His speech will focus on leadership and service.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 2, 2005-In the wake of Hurricane Katrina and in preparation for future disasters, the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) is offering consumers tips on how to protect themselves against fraudulent contractors.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 1, 2005--The Big 'I' today is paying tribute to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Michael Oxley (R-Ohio), who has announced he will retire from Congress at the end of his term. Big 'I' CEO Robert A. Rusbuldt, who has worked with Chairman Oxley on many important pieces of legislation over the years, today hailed him as a 'giant' for independent insurance agents and brokers.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 26, 2005--The Big 'I' today won an important victory when an amendment defunding Premium Reduction Plans (PRPs) was included in the agriculture appropriations conference report. The Kingston-Boyd provision would go into effect on July 1, 2006, the start of the 2007 reinsurance year.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 26, 2005--The Big 'I' today hailed the House of Representatives' passage of H.R. 420, the Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act (LARA). This important civil justice reform bill addresses the filing of frivolous lawsuits and 'forum shopping.'
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Oct. 25, 2005-The Agents Council for Technology (ACT) has compiled a series of best practices to help carriers, vendors, user groups and agent associations convince independent agencies and brokers to implement new workflows and technologies, and to assist them with training.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 21, 2005--The Big 'I' has helped secure important, pro-consumer revisions to the Risk Management Agency's (RMA) policy governing crop insurance. The Big 'I' worked with the RMA to loosen a 'gag order' that would have prevented agents from answering claim questions from farmers while loss adjusters assessed damages.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 20, 2005--The Big 'I' has testified before the House Financial Services Committee in support of Congressional efforts to examine and improve the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The Senate Banking Committee held a similar hearing Oct. 18.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 20, 2005--The Big 'I' praised the House of Representatives today for passing the 'Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.' The bill, S. 397, provides that lawsuits may not be brought against manufacturers and sellers of firearms or ammunition if the suits are based on criminal or unlawful use of their products by third parties.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 20, 2005--Efforts by the Big 'I' to prevent duplicative, burdensome and overreaching educational requirements within the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) have been rewarded with the publication of education requirements in the Federal Register by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The Big 'I' played a significant role in shaping the training and education requirements.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 18, 2005--The Big 'I' is pleased that the Senate Banking Committee today held a hearing to take a look at the National Flood Insurance Program's structure and whether the program is actuarially viable.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 26, 2005-Congressman Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) discussed the Congressional reaction to Hurricane Katrina before more than 150 insurance industry leaders, the company CEOs and executives from the largest agency and brokerage firms in the country at the Large Agents/Brokers and CEO Dinner, held recently at the Big 'I' Convention in New York City.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 23, 2005-The national board of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) has adopted a new policy on producer compensation disclosure by carriers. The policy seeks to avoid disparate and conflicting company requirements, and to encourage carriers to consult with IIABA, its state associations and independent agents before implementing any producer compensation disclosure.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 22, 2005- Today the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA), and its state associations in Louisiana and Mississippi, sent a letter to independent agency insurance carriers asking for innovative, creative and flexible responses in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 21, 2005-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA), the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of Louisiana, the Independent Insurance Agents of Mississippi, and the Alabama Independent Insurance Agents have moved quickly to spearhead relief efforts for those affected by Hurricane Katrina, arranging funds, supplies and resources to those in need.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 20, 2005- J. Michael Miley has been elected to the Executive Committee of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I').
ALEXANDRIA, Va. Sept. 15, 2005-Diane Durnin of J.D. Fulwiler & Company Insurance, Inc., was named 'The Ultimate Producer,' the winner of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (IIABA) reality program 'The Ultimate Producer Challenge.' The competition was held in conjunction with the Big 'I' Convention in New York earlier this week.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 14, 2005-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') inaugurated William G. Stiglitz III as the Association's 101st president, and Alex Soto, CPCU, ARM as the Association's president-elect.
NEW YORK Sept. 13, 2005-Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani addressed independent agents and brokers from across America and several countries at the closing general session of the Big 'I' Convention.
NEW YORK, Sept. 12, 2005-Four national insurance companies were presented the prestigious 'Best Practices Award of Excellence' at the 2005 Big 'I' Convention Opening General Session of the Best Practices Management Institute.
NEW YORK, Sept. 12, 2005-Hurricane Katrina, federal and state legislative and regulatory issues, market trends, technology initiatives, industry recruitment, and the future of the independent agency system took center stage at a high-powered CEO panel held at the opening general session of the Big 'I' Convention in New York City.
NEW YORK, Sept. 11, 2005-Mike Donohoe today received the most distinguished honor the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I' bestows upon an individual when he was presented with the Woodworth Memorial Award during the opening general session of the association's 2005 Big 'I' Convention in New York City. Donohoe is currently an owner and agent in the James R. Weir Insurance Agency in Mankato, Minn.
NEW YORK, Sept. 11, 2005-At today's 4th annual Big 'I' Diversity Luncheon, Tim Manaka, of FIA Insurance Services, Inc. in Pasadena, Calif., became the Diversity Task Force's new chairperson.
NEW YORK, Sept. 11, 2005-Several prominent insurance industry leaders discussed the effects of Hurricane Katrina and current industry trends, including technology, recruitment efforts and future plans for their companies during an informative panel at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's 30th Annual Young Agents Sales & Leadership Conference.
NEW YORK, Sept. 10, 2005-The Young Agents Committee (YAC) of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today presented its most prestigious annual award to the Young Agents Committee of the Professional Independent Insurance Agents of Illinois (PIIAI).
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 8, 2005-Harleysville Insurance, a leading regional insurance company based in Harleysville, Pa., is the latest company to join the growing Trusted Choice consumer brand movement.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 2, 2005-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) has established the Big 'I' Katrina Relief Fund, in order to assist those whose lives have been tragically altered by Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, announces Big 'I' CEO Robert A. Rusbuldt.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 1, 2005-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) have put out a quick list of tips that help consumers deal with the aftermath of a natural disaster.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 31, 2005-When returning to a flooded home or business, people need to take safety precautions says Robert A. Rusbuldt, CEO of the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 30, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America (IIABA) offers a number of facts to dispel myths about the National Flood Insurance Program.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 26, 2005-Join nine of the best producers from across the country as they compete in IIABA's own reality program, The Ultimate Producer Challenge, on Sept. 12 at the Big 'I' Convention. Joining the nine will be the premier insurance sales coach, Roger Sitkins of the Sitkins Group in Fort Myers, Fla., acting as the contest's host and judge.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 16, 2005-Trusted Choice television advertising returns to a TV set near you for two weeks next month when ads touting the benefits of using more than 5,100 participating agencies and their branch locations hit the nation's airwaves.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 4, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York (IIABNY) and the Agents Council for Technology (ACT) today announce their co-hosted Business Improvement Workshop, taking place Sunday, Sept. 11, at the Big 'I' Convention.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 27, 2005 - William G. Stiglitz III, a Kentucky independent agent and national officer of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'), today told the House Financial Services Committee that the risk of terrorist attacks is a problem for business throughout America, not just in major urban areas.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., July 26, 2005 - Stacy Heatherington is the new brand manager of Trusted Choice-the national consumer brand identity created to educate consumers about the benefits of using independent insurance agents and brokers, announces Jeffrey A. Myers, program executive director.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., July 26, 2005 - Five top insurance industry leaders will participate in a CEO panel discussion during the opening session of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (Big 'I') Convention in New York, announces Big 'I' CEO Robert A. Rusbuldt.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., July 25, 2005- Developing producers and staff and creating a strong sales and service culture are key factors in increasing agency value. The Best Practices Management Institute, taking place on Monday, Sept. 12, in conjunction with the Big 'I' Convention at the Hilton New York in New York City, will examine a variety of ways to grow your agency and create agency value.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., July 21-Missouri Employers Mutual Insurance (MEM), based in Columbia, Mo., has joined a growing number of leading carriers that are participating in the Trusted Choice brand movement-the national consumer brand campaign created to educate consumers about the benefits of using independent insurance agents and brokers.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 14, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (Big 'I') today praised the Senate Banking Committee for holding a hearing on the future of a federal terrorism insurance backstop. The Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is set to expire Dec. 31, and Congress is now determining how or whether to extend or replace it in the wake of a Treasury Department report handed down June 30th.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 13, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') applauds the House of Representatives for passing H.R. 804, which would prevent flood mitigation grants from being counted as income for tax purposes. The Big 'I' supports the bill, which if enacted will ease potentially devastating consequences for those who seek to improve their properties against flood damage.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 13, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (Big 'I') today praised the House Financial Services Committee for holding a hearing on the future of a federal terrorism insurance backstop. The Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is set to expire Dec. 31, and Congress is now determining how or whether to extend or replace it in the wake of a Treasury Department report handed down June 30th.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 12, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today praised the House Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity for holding a hearing on the future of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The Big 'I,' the nation's largest insurance association, supported the Flood Insurance Reform Act (FIRA) of 2004, but has expressed concerns that certain areas of reform were not addressed in the law, which reauthorized the NFIP for five years.
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 30, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (Big 'I') today expressed both cautious optimism and concern over Administration comments regarding a federal backstop for terrorism insurance.
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 28, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') testified Tuesday before a Senate committee on the ongoing question of the Premium Reduction Plan (PRP), which potentially opens the door for unqualified and poorly-trained individuals to sell crop insurance.
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 28, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today praised the House of Representatives for its approval of H.R. 458, the Military Personnel Financial Services Protection Act, introduced by Rep. Geoff Davis (R-Ky.). The bill, which the Big 'I' supports, would help stop questionable life insurance sales practices aimed at members of our nation's armed forces.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 22, 2005-Trusted Choice, the consumer brand program for independent agents and brokers, has reached its goal of 5,000 retail locations across the country, announces Ronald A. Smith, CPCU, Trusted Choice Board chairman.
ALEXANDRIA, VA, June 16, 2005- While you're surfing the Internet over the next month, take the time to go to www.homestore.com to check out the new Trusted Choice Web banner ads. The online ad campaign begins June 19 and runs through July 16. Bonus placements could extend its duration to July 30
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 16, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') commends House Financial Services Committee Chairman Mike Oxley (R-Ohio) and Capital Markets, Insurance and Government-Related Enterprises Subcommittee Chairman Richard Baker (R-La.) for moving forward with hearings on the State Modernization and Regulatory Transparency (SMART) Act.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 15, 2005-During the past year, the Agents Council for Technology (ACT), working closely with ACORD and agency management system user groups, has undertaken a major initiative to make commercial lines download more accurate and effective for independent insurance agencies and brokers.
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 14, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') respectfully takes issue with a letter from several financial services companies and state banking associations to the Senate Banking Committee in support of an optional federal charter (OFC) for insurance regulation.
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 13, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is enthusiastic and very pleased to learn that the American Insurance Association (AIA) has selected Marc Racicot as its next CEO. Racicot, who served as governor of Montana from 1993-2001 and chairman of the Republican National Committee from 2002-2004, will take the reins from Robert Vagley, who is retiring.
HARTFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE--June 8, 2005--St. Paul Travelers announced today that its course in insurance ethics - Fair Access to Insurance - will now be available to agents and brokers through the Big 'I' Virtual University, provided by the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America, Inc. at http://www.independentagent.com.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 1, 2005-The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is looking for producers with that special blend of personality, salesmanship and technical expertise to take The Ultimate Producer Challenge. The association is now accepting applications for the event, which will culminate at the Big 'I' Convention, taking place in New York City Sept. 10-12.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., May 23, 2005 - The Agents Council for Technology (ACT) today unveiled new design and functionality for ACTtech, a Web site resource to help independent agents and brokers leverage the latest real-time interface, download, and other time-saving technology capabilities that their particular vendors and carriers are offering.
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., May 17, 2005 - One of the nation's premier junior golf events takes on a new name this year, as Indiana gears up to host the 37th edition of the newly minted Trusted Choice Big 'I' Junior Classic. The tournament is co-presented by the Tiger Woods Foundation, and Allied Insurance is the premier Host Committee sponsor for this year's championships.
WASHINGTON, D.C., May 4, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') testified Wednesday before a House subcommittee on the ongoing question of the Premium Reduction Plan (PRP), which potentially opens the door for unqualified and poorly-trained individuals to sell crop insurance.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., April 28, 2005--On Thursday, April 21, 24 students from T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Va., attended the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (Big 'I') National Legislative Conference in Washington D.C. The highlight of the event was hearing President Bush express his vision for Social Security reform and discuss insurance issues.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 27, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') National Board has nominated Alex Soto, CPCU, ARM, as the association's president-elect and has elected Robert E. Fulwider as the Association's next vice president. The board's action came last week following the Big 'I' National Legislative Conference.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 26, 2005 - Mark V. Williamson of Little Rock, Ark., was honored with the Bernard J. Burns Award, and Dean Wooten of Statesville, N.C., was honored with the InsurPac Young Agent Recognition Award at the Big 'I' National Legislative Conference. The awards were presented for outstanding efforts on behalf of InsurPac in 2004.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 25, 2005 - Tom Ahart, chairman of the State Government Affairs Committee of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') and past president of the association, has received the association's highest individual government affairs honor - the Sidney O. Smith Award. Additionally, the Independent Insurance Agents of Mississippi (IIAM) was awarded the Maurice G. Herndon Award, the highest government affairs award for a state association.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 22, 2005 - Senator Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) addressed more than 1,000 independent insurance agents and brokers at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') National Legislative Conference this week.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 21, 2005 - President George W. Bush addressed his vision for Social Security and insurance issues before more than 1,000 independent insurance agents and brokers at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') National Legislative Conference today. The enthusiastic crowd welcomed the opportunity to hear the President's insights into Social Security, asbestos reform, class action, and legal reform.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 20, 2005 - Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) spoke about insurance issues to young independent agents and brokers from nearly all 50 states, along with the state and national InsurPac leaders at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') 29th annual National Legislative Conference today. McHenry addressed the Young Agent-InsurPac Luncheon.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 20, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) today bestowed upon Rep. Richard Baker (R-La.) the prestigious Gerald Solomon-IIABA Legislator of the Year Award for 2004. Baker received the honor for his leadership on terrorism insurance and his central role in developing the State Modernization and Regulatory Transparency (SMART) Act.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., April 18, 2005 - May is Trusted Choice Month, a month-long campaign of advertising and public relations activities that will increase consumer awareness of the brand. Trusted Choice Month gets rolling May 9 when a two-week, half-million dollar, national cable TV ad flight kicks off. This advertising activity will consist of nearly 100 ads through May 22.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 15, 2005 - President George W. Bush will address more than 1,000 independent insurance agents and brokers Thursday, April 21, at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') National Legislative Conference. The President will address the urgent need to modernize our Social Security system for our children and our grandchildren.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 14, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today submitted testimony to the House Financial Services Committee on ways to reform the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The Big 'I,' the nation's largest insurance association, supported the National Flood Insurance Act (NFIA) of 2004, but today expressed concerns that certain areas of reform were not addressed in the law, which reauthorized the NFIP for five years.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 14, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today submitted testimony to the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee in support of federal legislation to continue a terrorism insurance program prior to expiration of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) on Dec. 31, 2005.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 13, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today submitted testimony to the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee in support of S. 714, the Junk Fax Prevention Act. The Big 'I' noted in its testimony that S. 714 would restore an exception allowing businesses to communicate via fax in the context of 'existing business relationships.'
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 13, 2005 - Today's House passage of H.R. 8, the Death Tax Repeal Permanency Act, is a great step forward, says the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'). Sponsored by Rep. Kenny Hulshof (R-Mo.), the bill would permanently repeal the estate tax, which was scheduled to be temporarily phased out by 2010 as part of President Bush's 2001 tax cuts.
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 7, 2005 - First-term Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) will speak to young independent agents and brokers from nearly all 50 states, along with the state and national InsurPac leaders April 20th at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') 29th annual National Legislative Conference. Separately, Margaret Hunt with the J. Fletcher Willey Agency, Inc. in Nags Head, N.C., is the recipient of the 2005 Maurice Herndon scholarship.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., April 5, 2005-In this new electronic world, a careful focus on security planning and implementation has become imperative for independent agents and brokers, according to the Agents Council for Technology's (ACT) new report, The Independent Agent's Guide to Systems Security: What Every Agency Principal Needs to Know.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 29, 2005-The unusual 2004 hurricane season provided the catalyst for the Agents Council for Technology (ACT) to assemble a work group of affected independent agents and other industry participants to improve the disaster planning process. The product of these discussions is ACT's newest report, Key Considerations in Disaster Planning & Management for Independent Agencies & Brokerage Firms.
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 28, 2005 - Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), a leading voice among moderates in the Senate, will speak to members of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') during its National Legislative Conference next month.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 23, 2005 - Emily Crane is the new manager of media relations for the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, announces Cliston L. Brown, the association's director of public affairs and media relations.
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 16, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today praised the House Financial Services Committee for its quick approval of H.R. 458, the Military Personnel Financial Services Protection Act, introduced by Rep. Geoff Davis (R-Ky.).
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 9, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'), the nation's largest agents and brokers group, is pleased to see the introduction of new legislation in the House of Representatives to extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 8, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'), the nation's largest agents and brokers group, is pleased with the much-improved producer compensation disclosure model approved Saturday by the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) at its spring meeting in Hilton Head, S.C.
WASHINGTON, D.C., February 28, 2005 - Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) will speak to members of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') during its National Legislative Conference next month.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 23, 2005 - Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani will be the keynote speaker at the 2005 Big 'I' Convention on Sept. 12 in New York City. Giuliani, noted during his tenure (1993-2001) for fighting crime, revitalizing the city and displaying exemplary leadership in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, will speak on the theme of leadership at the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's annual event.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 18, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today commended President Bush for signing the Class Action Fairness Act (S.5) into law. The Association also again praised leaders in both houses of Congress - including Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and their allies in this effort - for working hard this month to get the bill to the President's desk.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 18, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I'), the nation's largest agents and brokers group, today hailed the Senate introduction of a bill to extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 17, 2005 - After Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said today that catastrophic terrorist attacks remain virtually uninsurable in the private sector, the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') renewed its call for extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 17 - Trusted Choice advertising will return to a television set near you next month when a two-week, nationwide ad flight airs, announces Ronald A. Smith, CPCU, chairman of the consumer branding program's Board of Directors.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 10, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') today hailed the Senate's passage of the Class Action Fairness Act and is hopeful that the legislation will become law quickly.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 8, 2005 - Liberty Northwest Insurance Corp., based in Portland, Ore., has joined a growing number of leading carriers that are participating in the Trusted Choice branding movement - the national consumer branding campaign created to educate consumers about the benefits of using independent insurance agents and brokers.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 3, 2005 - Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), chief deputy whip of the U.S. House of Representatives, will speak to national leaders of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') during the association's annual Insiders' Luncheon on Capitol Hill.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 2, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is pleased the House of Representatives is moving forward on legislation to reform the nation's class-action litigation system.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 2, 2005 - Young agents and brokers are encouraged to apply for scholarships available to help them attend the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America's (the Big 'I') National Legislative Conference for the first time. The event is taking place April 20 through 22 at the Grand Hyatt Washington in Washington, D.C.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 27, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') strongly denounces the irresponsible claims made against independent agents and brokers yesterday by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA). The report makes unsupported and misleading statements about the way independent insurance agents and brokers work, resulting in irresponsible and incomplete advice to consumers.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Jan. 19, 2005 - The overall property-casualty market grew 9.5 percent in 2003, and independent agents and brokers produced 59.4 percent of this market, according to 'The 2003 Property-Casualty Insurance Market' recently released by the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA). The independent agency system grew its overall market share by 0.7 points in 2003, achieving growth in share in both commercial and personal lines.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 18, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) has scheduled its 29th annual National Legislative Conference, the industry's largest and most effective legislative gathering, for April 20-22 at The Grand Hyatt Hotel in downtown Washington, D.C.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 11, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big 'I') applauds Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) for moving quickly to hold hearings on proposed asbestos legislation, but would like to see additional protections added to insulate insurers and manufacturers against potential insolvency and to avoid putting asbestos cases back into the court system.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., January 5, 2005 - The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) is again offering a sales training program that has helped newer agents average $65,000 in annual commissions. The dramatically successful Elite Force Sales Training Program returns on February 7.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., January 4, 2005 - The Agents Council for Technology (ACT) announced it has published a multi-part report on the ACT Web site to help independent agents and brokers build a sales-driven agency culture and implement disciplined sales processes using available technology tools.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 3, 2005 - With the start of a new Congress and state legislative sessions, the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America (the Big 'I') is announcing its legislative agenda for 2005. Top issues for the nation's largest insurance association this year will include broker-fee disclosure, regulatory and legal reform, TRIA extension and several others.