I was born in 1960 in Indiana into a semi-religious family. In 1978, at the age of 18 I matriculated to Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga, TN. I graduated from TTU with a B.A. in Bible with minors in communications and psychology in 1982. I also got married in September of 1982. Obviously, 1982 was a huge year for me.
I was the first person, from either side of my family tree, to obtain a Batcheler’s degree. Genealogically speaking, that is a point of self-pride. I have always loved learning new, and often strange, things. In fact my brain is full of fluff that I have learned over the years. I appreciate education, both formal and informal.
Perhaps my love of learning is the reason I enjoy being an insurance agent as much as I do. While studying for my insurance license I was hooked by all the fascinating new things I could learn and how they would work together. The old cliché that says, “Knowledge is power,” became frighteningly apparent to me.
I spent the years 1987-2004 working as a captive agent for other people. During that time I learned what makes a successful insurance agent and what can hold one back. In 2004 I left the captive agency world and became an independent insurance agent, specializing in health insurance.
I had to build my agency from scratch. I actually made less money after 17 years of experience my first month as an independent than I did my first week as a captive agent. In 1987 my first month’s income was $ 1200. In 2004 my first month’s commission check was for $38.75.
The difference is that in 1987 I was brand new. I had no idea what it took to be successful as an insurance agent. In 2004 I had the knowledge and the wisdom to use that knowledge. By 2007 I was earning more than I was before as a captive agent. Every year since my income has increased.
Now that I am older and more experienced, I no longer see myself as the student but qualified to teach. That is not to say I am not able to learn. On the contrary, I learn something new every week. I’m constantly learning new ways to interest people in myself, my agency and my products.
Now, after 23 years, I feel confident that I am able to pass on some of the things I have learned to help young agents be more successful in the industry that has been so good to me.