The new chairman of the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies is Steve Linkous, president and CEO of Bel Air, Maryland-based Harford Mutual Insurance Companies.
In his address at the group’s annual convention in Vancouver, Linkous urged members to seize the opportunities of the present and create them for the future.
He reflected on the importance of taking advantage of opportunities that present themselves, citing his own career, including his opportunity with NAMIC, as a perfect example.
“I quickly became a huge advocate of NAMIC and decided to get involved in every possible way,” Linkous said. “As with every experience in life, it is what you put into it – your commitment – that dictates the value and reward you receive from it.”
As NAMIC chair, Linkous will represent the association’s more than 1,400 members at industry meetings and events, as well as with legislators and regulators.
Linkous said he plans to focus on the need to attract new talent to the insurance business. As an aging industry, many insurance professionals are expected to retire in the next few years, and Linkous talked about the work Harford Mutual is doing to address the issue while challenging his colleagues to do the same.
“I know many of you are working on the same kinds of initiatives within your own organizations, and to that I say keep up the good work. For those of you who haven’t quite gotten into the game yet, I challenge you to give it a shot,” he continued. “The future of our industry depends on new talent entering it.”
Linkous knows of what he speaks, having started his insurance career at the age of 17 as a computer programmer with Harford Mutual in 1985. He learned the insurance side of the business while earning his college degree at night, and over the next 20 years, he rose through the company ranks. Linkous took over as chairman of Harford Mutual in 2006, becoming only the eleventh president to lead the company in its 170-year history.