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IIABA Announces 2003-2004 Executive Committee

Canter Becomes 99th IIABA President; Nilsson Elected as Newest At-Large Member



LAS VEGAS, Sept. 24—Louise “BeBe” Canter was inaugurated today as the new president of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) and C. Brett Nilsson, CIC was elected to the association’s Executive Committee.

Canter, who becomes IIABA’s first female president and 99th overall, was sworn in during today’s closing general session of the association’s Convention & InfoXchange in Las Vegas. Canter is senior vice president of Patterson//Smith Associates in Falls Church, Va. Outgoing IIABA president W. Cloyce Anders, president of VFIS of North Carolina in Raleigh, remains on the Executive Committee as immediate past president.

For me, it is a culmination of over 25 years of volunteer work within our association,” Canter said during her inaugural speech to IIABA members. “The privilege of serving not only as your president, but also as your first woman president, is truly an incredible honor.”

Meanwhile, Nilsson was elected to the Executive Committee by IIABA’s National Board of State Directors during its meeting immediately prior to the InfoXchange. Nilsson is vice president of operations for Acordia Mountain West in Ogden, Utah. He served as president of the Independent Insurance Agents of Utah from 1992 to 1993 and has been the state national director from Utah since 1994. On the national level, Nilsson has served on IIABA’s National Communications Committee and its Finance Committee, which he chaired from 1999 to 2003. He received an IIABA Presidential Citation in 2001.

Thomas A. Grau, a sales executive with Cogswell Agency in Great Falls, Mont., assumed his new post within the association’s volunteer leadership today when he was sworn in as president-elect.

William G. Stiglitz III, an account executive with Louisville, Ky.-based Hyland, Block & Hyland, Inc., became IIABA’s new vice president.

IIABA’s National Board of State Directors confirmed Grau and Stiglitz to their new positions at its mid-year meeting in April 2003. Grau will become the association’s 100th president at IIABA’s 2004 Convention & InfoXChange in Orlando, Fla.

The Convention & InfoXchange is IIABA’s showcase meeting taking place in Las Vegas from Sept. 21-24. The event features a compelling company CEO roundtable; several prominent guest speakers and panelists; a wide variety of innovative continuing-education (CE) classes and other cutting-edge workshops; one of the largest exhibit halls in the insurance industry; numerous networking opportunities; and many other exciting events.

Founded in 1896, IIABA is the nation’s oldest and largest national association of independent insurance agents and brokers, representing a network of more than 300,000 agents, brokers and their employees nationally. Its members are businesses that offer customers a choice of policies from a variety of insurance companies. Independent agents and brokers offer all lines of insurance—property, casualty, life and health—as well as employee benefit plans and retirement products. Web address: www.independentagent.com.

IIABA 2003-2004 Executive Committee Member Profiles

President Louise “BeBe” Canter, CPCU, ARM

Canter, a senior vice president at Patterson//Smith Associates in Falls Church, Va., has been active in the Metropolitan Washington Association of Independent Insurance Agents (MWAIIA) in many capacities, including president, state national director and young agent chairman. In 1991, she was chosen as the MWAIIA Agent of the Year. She also served as chairman of the Southern Agents Conference in 1994. On the national level, Canter was a member of the IIABA Large Agents Committee and served as MWAIIA’s representative to the IIABA National Board of State Directors for six years. In September 1998, Ms. Canter became the first woman in IIABA history elected to serve on the Executive Committee.

President-Elect Thomas A. Grau, CPCU

Grau, a sales executive with Cogswell Agency in Great Falls, Mont.,  served as chairman of the IIABA Finance Committee immediately prior to his election to the Executive Committee in September 1999.  He also has served on the Audit, Direction, and Resources Committees. His extensive service on the local and state levels includes president and state national director of the Independent Insurance Agents of Montana, state association Technical Affairs Committee chairman, and three terms as local association president.

Vice President William G. Stiglitz, III

Stiglitz, of Louisville, Ky.-based Hyland, Block & Hyland, Inc., served as the Kentucky representative to the IIABA Board of State National Directors immediately prior to his election to the Executive Committee. He is a past state president of the Independent Insurance Agents of Kentucky. He was the planning liaison to the national board and serves on Kentucky's government affairs committee. Stiglitz has been an independent insurance agent for 30 years, joining his uncle's insurance agency, Miller & Scholtz, in 1970, which merged with his current firm in 1992.

Executive Committee Member Alex Soto, CPCU, ARM

Soto, president of Miami, Fla.-based InSource, Inc., was the Florida representative to IIABA’s Board of State National Directors and chairman of the association’s Communications Committee immediately prior to his election to the Executive Committee in 2001. The grandson and great-grandson of two of Cuba’s presidents, Soto has been an independent insurance agent for over 20 years. He is vice chairman of the Florida Casualty Joint Underwriting Association. Soto also was a member of the Governor’s Commission on the Florida Insurance Crisis in 1993 and the Insurance Fraud Task Force in 1997.

Executive Committee Member Robert E. Fulwider

Fulwider is principal and executive vice president of the Ray Wuestenberg Agency, Inc., of West Liberty, Iowa, and principal and executive vice president of the Fulwider Agency, Inc., of West Branch, Iowa. He also is president of Bob Fulwider and Associates, a life and health financial planning agency in Eastern Iowa. Mr. Fulwider served as chairman of IIABA’s Government Affairs Committee before being elected to the Executive Committee in 2002. Mr. Fulwider is a past president of the Independent Insurance Agents of Iowa (IIAI) and serves on the state association’s Insurance Education Faculty. He was named IIAI Agent of the Year in 1990 and again in 1993, making him the first honoree in the Iowa association’s history to receive the award twice.

Executive Committee Member C. Brett Nilsson, CIC

Nilsson is vice president of operations for Acordia Mountain West in Ogden, Utah. Prior to being elected to the Executive Committee in 2003, he served as president of the Independent Insurance Agents of Utah from 1992 to 1993 and as the state national director from Utah for nine years. On the national level, Nilsson has served on IIABA’s Communications Committee and its Finance Committee, which he chaired from 1999 to 2003. Nilsson is on the agent advisory councils of several different insurance companies. He is a past recipient of Utah’s Agent of the Year and Young Agent of the Year awards, and he received an IIABA Presidential Citation in 2001.

Immediate Past President W. Cloyce Anders

Anders, president of VFIS of North Carolina in Raleigh, N.C., and Pamlico Insurance Services, Inc., in Bayboro, N.C., was elected to the Executive Committee in September 1997. Mr. Anders also is a managing partner of Independent Agency Services, LLC, of Durham, N.C. He has been involved with IIABA on both the state and national levels. Mr. Anders was president of IIANC from 1989 to 1990, and represented the North Carolina association on IIABA’s Board of State National Directors from 1992 to 1997. He has served on numerous national and state committees, and has been named Agent of the Year, Young Agent of the Year, Educator of the Year, and Committee Chairman of the Year by the North Carolina association.

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