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    APRIL 8, 2015 | VOLUME LXIV, ISSUE 15
    Better communication key to success of depop efforts
    While ongoing efforts to depopulate Citizens are helping to reduce policy counts, all involved agree that the process is flawed by a lack of effective communication. FAIA CEO Jeff Grady, who represents agents on the Citizens Depopulation Workgroup, offers a recap of the group’s work in his latest blog. Potential recommendations of the group include: more effective, uniform communications with agents before take-out offers are made and a general reduction in the number of steps required for consumer notification and acceptance.
    InsurPac: Insurance for your livelihood
    With so many important issues being debated in our nation’s capital, it’s vital that independent agents play an active role in shaping the public policy debate, and ultimately, the laws that come out of Washington, D.C. Playing an active role means having a seat at the table, and the best way to do that is through personal, voluntary contributions to InsurPac, IIABA’s federal political action committee. Read Brian Scarborough’s article in the Media Center to learn more.
    Animated video explains assignment of benefits issue to the masses
    Let’s face it; assignment of benefits isn’t an easy thing to explain to the uninitiated, let alone to lawmakers who are cramming to understand as many issues as possible in a 60-day window. Enter Sachs Media Group, which produced a video for FAIA—and posted it on the Facebook feeds of key legislators. Check it out, and share far and wide.
    What does an American need to drive his car in Canada?
    U.S. travelers driving into Canada must carry proof of insurance and car ownership papers. But that’s not all! To be on the safe side, and avoid a possible fine, drivers must also bring one additional item. Find out what it is and how to get it in David Thompson’s latest blog.
    Nominate now for award that recognizes outstanding customer service
    Nominations are now being accepted for the 2015 Outstanding CSR of the Year, and if your nominee goes on to win the national competition, you could receive $1,000 in cash (not to mention the $2,000 cash award for your CSR). Competition for the award, sponsored by The National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research, is open to all CSRs, regardless of affiliation or professional designation. An essay from the CSR is part of the entry process, so nominate well before the May 1 deadline. Application information is available online.
    Help develop future agents: Give to the Good Works Fund
    The workforce development bill on track to pass this legislative session will make insurance specialization programs more attractive to both state colleges and students. More insurance degree programs means more money is needed to support colleges putting the programs in place, and the students who will take those classes. Read Sue Ray’s blog to find out how you can help not just students, but also the American Agency System as a whole, by contributing to FAIA’s Good Works Fund.
    Learn how to make the most of your social media accounts
    So, you’ve set up a Facebook page and a Twitter account, but you’re not sure if you’ve set it up right or don’t feel quite ready to take the next step. Trusted Choice can help! Communications Manager Patrice Nichols will personally review your social media presence and offer suggestions about how to improve. Email Patrice to set up a social media checkup.
    Book your room before they’re all sold out
    If room reservations are any indication, this year’s Convention is going to be huge. Though the room block at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort is already full, FAIA has reserved another room block at the nearby Rosen Centre Hotel. Learn more and reserve your room before May 22. And don't forget to register; the deadline to secure the early-bird price is May 23.
    Attending Convention for the first time? You could win an iPad
    If you’ve never attended FAIA’s Convention before, you’re missing out. Convention offers tangible benefits through education classes (enough CE for an entire year) and networking with fellow agents and company personnel. If this year will be your first and you checked the “first time” box on your registration, keep an eye out for an email from the Pay It Forward Task Force that includes helpful tips about preparing for the Convention and an opportunity to win one of three iPads. Didn’t check the box? Email Ashlee Jessup.
    L. Donald Rushing, CPCU
    We extend our condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Don Rushing, who died on April 3 from a stroke. A native Floridian, Don moved to Pensacola at an early age. He spent time in the Merchant Marines and U.S. Air Force before graduating from the University of Florida. His first job was with Fisher-Brown Insurance, and he retired after 64 years there in 2014. He served FAIA’s members as an active participant of the Legislative Committee and as a director on the Board in the 90s. He served his community as a member of the Downtown Rotary, Fiesta of Five Flags, and many other organizations. In addition to insurance, Don loved his family, friends, dogs, and roses. Read about his life in the Pensacola News Journal.
    William J. Wood, Jr.
    We extend our condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Bill Wood, who died on March 30. Born in Alabama, he moved to Port St. Joe in 1968. His passions included family and friends, fishing, and sports. Read about his life in the Panama City News Herald

    Jennifer Petersen, Brightway Insurance, Inc.: voted the MVP of the Large Agency Chapter of the Network of Vertafore Users.

    Emerald Coast Insurance, Panama City: was highlighted in the Panama City News Herald.

    Sam Rogers, Sr., Tallahassee: received the National Association of Social Workers' Public Citizen Award for his work with the Big Bend Homeless Shelter.


    Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty: completed the sale of the U.S. personal lines business of Fireman’s Fund Insurance Co. to ACE Ltd.

    American International Group: announced Steve Miller will step down as chairman of the board in July; he will remain on the board. Gaurav Garg has been named CEO of the personal insurance division.

    Main Street America Group: announced Chris Cox as president of its newly created Florida Region.

    Patriot National, Inc.: acquired TriGen Insurance Solutions, based in Boca Raton.

    State Auto Financial Corporation: announced the hiring of Michael E. LaRocco as president and CEO effective May 8. Current President and CEO Robert P. Restrepo, Jr., will remain as chairman until he retires in December.


    A.R.D. of Florida Insurance, Inc.: Bradenton

    Caple Howden Insurance Agency, Inc.: Winter Park

    Chetty Insurance, LLC: Tampa

    DTRT Insurance Group, Inc.: Coral Springs

    DTRT Insurance Group, Inc.: Deerfield Beach

    DTRT Insurance Group, Inc.: Homestead

    HIG: Longwood

    New Season Insurance Advisors, LLC: Casselberry

    PACA, Inc. dba Abney Insurance Agency: Winter Garden

    Sabal Palm Insurance Group, LLC: Weston

    Sardina Insurance Agency: West Palm Beach

    We Insure: Apopka

    We Insure: Miami


    Brownyard Group: Bay Shore, NY

    Risk Management Advisory Group: Miami Lakes

    Selective Insurance Company: Branchville, NJ



    Many local boards hold monthly or quarterly meetings. Visit our website for a schedule


    • YAC Zone 4, Social Media Marketing Seminar: April 15, 2015; Dave & Buster's, Jacksonville.


    PO BOX 12129 | TALLAHASSEE, FL 32317-2129
    TELEPHONE: 850-893-4155 | FAX: 850-668-2852
    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means-electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise-without the prior written permission of the Florida Association of Insurance Agents. FAIA does not give legal advice. Agents are urged to seek the counsel of a licensed Florida attorney familiar with the Florida Insurance Code.