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Hays SLC “Benefit Our Community” Initiative

Every quarter the Hays Salt Lake City team contributes their time and talents to a local non-profit organization. This past quarter the team volunteered by raising money to help purchase schools supplies for underprivileged children. We are proud of our team member’s continual efforts to give back to our communities.

Hays Companies Enters into Agreement to Join Brown & Brown, Inc.

(Minneapolis, MN)  Jim Hays, Chief Executive Officer of Hays Companies, and J. Scott Penny, Chief Acquisitions Officer of Brown & Brown, Inc. (NYSE:BRO), today announced that Brown & Brown, Inc. (Brown & Brown) has entered into an agreement to acquire selected assets of the Hays Companies insurance operations.  The transaction is expected to close in November 2018, subject to certain closing conditions.

Hays Companies will operate as a region inside Brown & Brown Retail.  The operations will continue to be led by Jim Hays, as Chief Executive Officer, and Mike Egan as President/COO of the Hays Companies.  Following completion of the transaction, Jim will join Brown & Brown, Inc. as Vice Chairman and will serve on the board of directors, and Mike will become a Regional President of the Brown & Brown Retail Division.  Mike will continue reporting to Jim and Jim will report up to Powell Brown, Chief Executive Officer of Brown & Brown.

Jim Hays stated, “After 24 years as an independent insurance broker, we feel the time is now to partner with an industry leader who shares our cultural values.  Brown & Brown has the same client-focused attitude that our clients have come to expect from the Hays Companies team. This partnership enhances our ability to provide expanded solutions for our clients and new opportunities for our employees.  Because the Hays Companies name, our executive group, and our account teams will not change, we expect a smooth transition.  As far as we are concerned, it is business as usual.  This is a new era for Hays Companies.  I am very excited about the future as a part of the Brown & Brown family.”

Powell Brown stated, “For the past several years, Jim and I have gotten to know one another both professionally and personally.  It became clear to me over that time that our organizations share a common sales, service, entrepreneurial and teammate focused culture which delivers results and that joining the Hays Companies team with Brown & Brown will be mutually beneficial to our collective clients, teammates and carrier partners.  We are excited to have the experience and client-focused team of Hays Companies join with us under the leadership of Jim and Mike.”

You may view this video of Jim Hays and Powell Brown discussing Hays Companies joining the Brown & Brown team.

Jim Hays formed the Hays Companies in 1994. Since formation, Jim, along with Mike Egan, Steve Lerum, and Bill Mershon, have successfully grown Hays Companies to number 22 on Business Insurance Magazine’s list of 100 largest U.S. brokers, with annualized revenue of approximately $200 million. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Hays Companies is comprised of over 700 risk management and employee benefits professionals in 32 locations across 21 states. The Hays Companies focuses on risk management and commercial insurance, employee benefits, consulting services, specialty programs and private client services.  Hays Companies’ current operations can be reviewed at www.hayscompanies.com.

Brown & Brown, Inc., through its subsidiaries, offers a broad range of insurance products and related services. Additionally, certain Brown & Brown subsidiaries offer a variety of risk management, third-party administration, and other services. Serving business, public entity, individual, trade and professional association clients nationwide, Brown & Brown is ranked by Business Insurance magazine as the United States’ sixth largest independent insurance intermediary. For more information on Brown & Brown, visit www.bbinsurance.com.

For press inquiries please contact Andrea Field, Hays Companies National Director of Marketing & Strategy, at 612-387-0952 or afield@hayscompanies.com.

Hays Intern Selected as The Council Foundation Scholarship Recipient

The Council Foundation LogoKatie O’Keefe, a student at Drake University and a summer intern in the Hays Marketing Department, has been selected as a recipient of a $5,000 academic scholarship for the 2018-19 year academic year, as announced by The Council Foundation.

The Council Foundation has maintained a competitive scholarship program for over ten years, for which top interns are eligible to be nominated for a $5,000 scholarship, as part of their mission to bring fresh, diverse talent into the brokerage sector. O’Keefe is one of 75 college students across the country who received a Council Foundation scholarship this year.

Of her experience with Hays, O’Keefe stated:

I was initially attracted to Hays’ entrepreneurial work ethic and environment, but my overall experience greatly exceeded my expectations. From the first day with my team, I was treated as a valued team member, and my suggestions were never discounted because of my age or experience. I was given real projects to manage and advance, which pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped to expand my professional skill set.

As a result of my experience with Hays, I have more confidence in myself and a clearer vision for my career path. I look forward to applying the skills I developed to classwork and team projects in my final semester at Drake and beyond.

Here at Hays, a robust internship program has always been a vital part of our identity. We have a long-standing internship program, which last year gave 9 students the opportunity to experience our unique entrepreneurial culture. Our highly-developed program allows students to make meaningful contributions to our corporate identity by collaborating on a summer project that is implemented company-wide at the end of the summer.

At the same time, students are paired with a mentor in their department for the duration of their internship and given real deliverables to contribute to existing timelines as opposed to more basic “intern duties.”  They also enjoy access to high-level company executives and operate in an environment where they are treated as more than “just the intern.”

Hays has long understood that if an internship is successful, the intern in question is more likely to accept or pursue a full-time offer upon graduation. According to an article by The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers, studies have demonstrated that “internships are the insurance brokerage industry’s most successful tool in the recruitment of college students.”  It is one of the many ways that we have continued to stay ahead of the curve when looking for and attracting the best young talent.

Insurance Journal ranks Hays in Top 25 of 100 Property/Casualty Agencies for 2018

Hays Companies was named one of the Top 25 Property/Casualty Agencies in the United States by the Insurance Journal, a leading industry publication for the Property/Casualty arena. The list is based on total revenue for 2017 and is comprised of agencies focused on retail policies.

Per the Insurance Journal, the list is indicative of “the nation’s most successful independent insurance agencies and brokerages.”

Hays Companies ranked 22nd this year, after experiencing $90,300,000 in total Property/Casualty revenue. This is the 25th year of consecutive growth for Hays.

“Our customers are at the center of everything we do,” explained Jim Hays, CEO of Hays Companies. “Each year, we are growing organically and extending our reach to better meet the needs of our clients. We will continue to be an industry leading company by going above and beyond to ensure we are the broker of choice for our customers.”

To view the full list, please click here.

Hays Companies Rises in “Top 100 Insurance Brokers” Rankings

Hays Companies is pleased to announce that they were recently named as the 22nd largest insurance broker in the United States by Business Insurance Magazine. This is the 25th year of consecutive revenue growth for Hays Companies.

Hays’ 2018 ranking is reflective of the entrepreneurial spirit on which they were founded and was an increase from their 2017 standings (for which they were ranked #23).  As a privately-held organization, Hays’ organic growth has been entirely accomplished by their team of experienced professionals.

Of Hays’ explosive trajectory, CEO Jim Hays said “We have continued our growth by investing in our people and building client-focused teams. Our business model encourages creative, out-of-the-box solutions that allow us to adapt quickly to the evolving needs of our clients.”

The list, which is generated annually, ranks the 100 largest insurance brokers in the country by revenue for all U.S. based clients in the previous calendar year.  Hays Companies’ 2017 brokerage revenues of $197,600,000 were up 2.2% over the 2018 fiscal year.

To learn more about the list and to view the complete rankings, please click here.

Founded in 1994, Hays Companies specializes in risk management, insurance, and employee benefits.

Hays Companies Vice President Bruce Lyon Receives 2018 Excellence Award

Hays Companies of Kansas City is proud to announce that Bruce Lyon, Vice President and Director of Risk Management, was honored by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals with the 2018 CSP Award of Excellence.

A leader in high quality credentialing for safety, health and environmental practitioners, the Board of Certified Safety Professionals (BCSP) was founded in 1969. Since then, they have grown to be recognized as the leader in credentialing for practitioners in the safety, health, and environmental industries. Their highly prestigious Award of Excellence is awarded to top practitioners that embody outstanding leadership, deep industry knowledge and a strong commitment to advancing safety excellence.

Lyon has over 37 years of experience in the insurance and consulting fields and continues to be a passionate advocate for the advancement of the safety profession. He currently serves as Advisory Board Chair to the University of Central Missouri (UCM) Safety Sciences program as an active collaborator with the faculty, a frequent lecturer and mentor.

Additionally, Lyon is Vice Chair of the ISO 31000 Risk Management standards US Technical Advisory Group (US TAG), a member of the ANSI/ASSE Z590.3 Prevention through Design standard review committee, and a subject matter expert in the development of the Board of Certified Safety Professionals’ (BCSP) Safety Management Specialist (SMS) certification.

To learn more about the Board of Certified Safety Professionals and the other Excellence Award recipients, please click here.

Andrew Williamson Joins Hays Companies of Wisconsin Benefits Practice

Hays Companies of Wisconsin is pleased to announce that Andrew Williamson has joined the Benefits Practice, where he will focus on employers with under 200 employees.  Williamson brings 15+ years of consulting and brokerage experience with similarly-sized employer groups.

“Our unique tools and industry-leading talent have led to expansive growth in our core business segment that focuses on larger employers,”  said Dan Robinson, Executive Vice President of Hays Companies.  “We are excited to share the tools and resources with middle market employers with under 200 employees.  With Andrew’s leadership, we expect to positively redefine the value that employers of this size in Wisconsin can expect from a benefits advisory partner.”

Hays Companies is one of the fastest growing, privately-held risk management, insurance and employee benefits advisors in the country. Our philosophy of delivering the highest-quality, customer-focused service has led to significant growth for 20 years. Today the company includes 700+ experienced professionals in more than 35 locations throughout the United States. Andrew’s addition to Hays’ Wisconsin office follows the eighth consecutive year Hays Companies has been recognized as one of Wisconsin’s Top 100 Workplaces.

Education:

Andrew received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Andrew maintains a Wisconsin Resident Intermediary License for Accident and Health plans and Life plans.

Contact Information:

Andrew Williamson

Middle Market Practice Leader

Phone: 414-290-3609

Email: awilliamson@hayscompanies.com 

Hays Companies of Wisconsin Named One of the Top Workplaces

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has named Hays Companies of Wisconsin one of Wisconsin’s Top Workplaces for the eighth year in a row. Consequently, they have been inducted into The Journal Sentinel’s 2018 Top Workplaces Hall of Fame, a prestigious position that reflects the quality of our culture and employees.

Results were based on survey responses from employees on items such as how employees felt about their job and overall satisfaction with the company.

Highlights from the survey included the following comments:

“We are given the ability to succeed in whatever our career aspirations may be.”

“It’s challenging and something new every day. I enjoy my co-workers and feel that people are working together to deliver the best results for our clients.”

The people I work with are great, caring people. We all are working towards a common goal.”

“This is a great recognition and something that all of us are very proud of. It’s imperative to the management team to have built and to continue to create a healthy work environment where people love what they do and who they work with. Most importantly, this happiness translates to an exceptionally high level of customer service resulting in very high levels of client satisfaction,” Dan Kwiecinski, Executive Vice President of Hays Companies of Wisconsin said.  

Here at Hays Companies, we have created a culture that is unmatched in our industry. Inspired by our Founders’ entrepreneurial spirit and drive, our team thrives in a collaborative work environment, and an engaging and meaningful workplace, which allows our employees to deliver the best results to our clients.

Hays Companies is one of the fastest growing Property & Casualty and Employee Benefits advisers in the country. We are dedicated to providing expert counsel to our clients that assist them in minimizing or mitigating their “total cost of risk” in a well thought out and planned manner. We collaborate with clients to find business efficient solutions that you can improve upon incrementally over time. Our 700+ team represents a dynamic, entrepreneurial assembly of the best and brightest in the industry. With over 30 offices across the country, we draw from a pool of unrivaled expertise, in legal, certified public accountants, financial services, and claims to design a team devoted to your needs alone.

Hays Companies Congratulates Bruce Lyon on Prestigious Industry Award

Bruce Lyon, Hays Vice President and Director of Risk Management, recently received first place honors by The American Society of Safety Engineers’ (ASSE) Editorial Board and the Council on Professional Development for his article, Communicating and Managing Risk: The Key Result of Risk Assessment.

The article, co-authored by Dr. Georgi Popov, speaks to the critical impact that communication has on effectively managing risk. Without communication, risk assessments lack the power for positive change within an organization. To implement effective change, key-decision makers must be informed and safety professionals empowered to share potential for risk.

By establishing risk assessment methods that identify, assess and communicate potential operating risks, a trickledown effect is established that demonstrates downstream business consequences and the link between operational risk, occupational safety and health (OSH) risk, and business risk – an essential aspect for future planning.

The article, which was published in the November 2017 issue of the Professional Safety Journal, can be viewed in full, here: Communicating & Managing Risk – The Key Result of Risk Assessment.

This prestigious accomplishment demonstrates the depth of professionalism and risk control expertise that organizations can expect to receive from Hays Companies. To learn more about how Hays can help you manage your risk, please contact your local Hays Representative.

Bio: Lyon is a professional member and past president of ASSE’s Heart of America Chapter and a recipient of the Region V Safety Professional of the Year Award. He is advisory board chair to UCM’s Safety Sciences Program and co-author of Risk Assessment: A Practical Guide for Assessing Operational Risk.

Hays Companies Joins the National Safety Council’s Road to Zero initiative

Hays Companies recently joined the National Safety Council’s Road to Zero initiative, a partnership focused on ending traffic fatalities – a leading cause of unintentional deaths. The goal is safe mobility for all people through a coordinated, data-driven approach. As a partner of the Road to Zero Coalition, Hays will work to develop priorities and encourage stakeholders to take action to meet the goal of eliminating traffic fatalities by 2050.

It might seem like a lofty goal, but key stakeholders believe it is possible. “The aim of Road to Zero is to get to zero deaths by 2050,” says Debbie Hersman, the president and CEO of the National Safety Council, the lead on the Road to Zero initiative. “That’s the goal. We’ve done this with aviation—there have been several years with zero deaths in commercial aviation—and a lot of people thought that was impossible.”

At Hays Companies, we have continued to make distracted driving our national safety focus as an organization.

We are committed to the safety of our employees and clients on our roadways. We’ve been incredibly moved by our VP of Risk Management Services, Tom Goeltz, and his personal story with losing his daughter due to an alleged distracted driver. Goeltz is actively building national awareness as a legislative advocate and frequent public speaker on how to help keep employees and their families safe. Our Road to Zero Coalition partnership exemplifies the importance and value we at Hays Companies place on safety, and how we can work together to combat this epidemic.

“It’s not impossible – it just hasn’t been done yet. Working together, we will find new solutions to old problems and eliminate these preventable deaths,” said Tom Goeltz.

Looking for an employer toolkit on Distracted Driving? Consider these resources:

  • Safe Driving Kit with infographics, myth busters, videos, and more
  • Join in on the upcoming “Engaging Ways to Address Distracted Driving at Work” webinar hosted by the National Safety Council
  • Learn about cell phone blocking technology and tips to reduce distracted driving
  • Ask Hays about cell phone slips to block cell signals while driving
  • View a video series about workplace cell phone policies and related topics
  • Consider hosting Tom Goeltz for a personalized presentation on workplace safety

Visit nsc.org/roadtozero about the Road to Zero initiative or contact Tom Goeltz (tgoeltz@hayscompanies.com) for additional information.