The Kansas/Missouri President’s Advisory Council for SECURA Insurance met on Oct. 20, 2021.

Agent Representatives

Heath Greer, KAI Midwest Risk Partners; Joel Karsten, Charles L Crane Agency; Aaron Sharpe, Nixon & Lindstrom Insurance; Jeff Roberts, DeWitt Insurance, Inc.; Stephen Sedlak, Schmale Insurance; Sean Dunham, The Reilly Company

SECURA Representatives 

Tim Heyroth, SVP and Chief Sales Officer; Marty Arnold, SVP and Chief Underwriting Officer; Jennifer Nelson, VP Property Claims; Kristin Heiges, Director Marketing and Customer Experience; Brett Purcell, Regional Vice President - Sales

Click the links below to navigate to the comment/response section for each topic.

SECURA Overview | Personal Lines | Commercial Lines | Specialty Lines | Farm-Ag Lines | Risk Management | Claims | Miscellaneous

SECURA Overview

Tim Heyroth

SECURA is up 11.3% compared to a plan of 7% – we are having a great year (new/retention/rate – all three are solid). We expect to end the year at approximately $900 million and end 2023 exceeding $1 billion. Retention outperforms plan (premium in low 90s policy retention around 90). Our rate plan was 3% and we are at 3.2-3.3% and planning for less than 3% next year. We’ve had over $100 million new business this year. All lines of business are doing well in all states – all exceeding plan except Personal Lines – positive growth but not at plan. 

Effective 1/1/21, Mutual Holding company was formed. All policyholders will now have mutuality rights, which is staggered as policies renew. This gives us the ability look at acquisitions and investments differently. Our combined is around 95-96 through September. 

With 900+ associates, we had approximately 150 working remote before the pandemic and approximately 250 working remote now (we’ve had over 130 hires since the start of COVID). The week of July 4th we started a transition for all home office associates to return to the office at least three days a week with no travel restrictions. We feel our culture and work ethic is best when we are together and can work together in our new building. 

Top Initiatives: Modernization initiative on back end. SL300 (Specialty Lines 300) – how to grow this segment. We may hit $100 million this year. We plan to take Specialty Lines to $300 million (current states and state expansion). We went live in with Specialty Lines in PA on 10/1 (our first new state since 2006). Commercial Lines will follow in PA in 2022. We are building out an additional state expansion plan – more to come; no time frame at this point, and it may be segment specific by state. Grow Minnesota – a 5-year plan to double premium writings and we are in year four.

SECURA BizLinkSM: 75% of eligible business is received through BizLink, with a 90% satisfaction rate. BizLink continues to evolve and will develop more customer experience enhancements (straight through processing, as well as other enhancements). $8 million booked with 150+ classes. We are looking into an agency integration pilot (API’s)/pilot Tarmika.

Marty Arnold 

All four business units are in good shape and profitable; 3 of 4 business units are growing in the double digits. All four are planned to grow next year; all profitable; by size (premium volume): Commercial; Personal/Farm-Ag/Specialty Lines. Specialty Lines may hit $100 million by year-end.

Investment in staffing: We are onboarding more underwriters so we can get to all good opportunities, and we are expanding the Risk Management team as well. Commercial Lines accounts for 48% of our premium, and we are hoping for a Service Center sometime in Q4 of 2022; Farm-Ag is 19% of our writings & Specialty Lines is the smallest unit, but growing the fastest, and we hope to be at $100 million by year end.

Commercial Lines property is more firm than anticipated; Farm – getting rate/need to; lost money 4 years; Commercial Lines Auto trucking plenty of rate to be taken while severity continues to accelerate.

We are close to $880 million in revenue this year; split by line of business; Specialty Lines is close to hitting $100 million.

Diana Buechel, VP of Personal Lines, has announced her retirement. We are just starting the interview process.  A new CFO, Christine Cousineau, has been hired, and she started Oct. 18.

Jennifer Nelson

Missouri had $1.53 million weather losses; $50.2 million companywide with five major storms, but none that have reached Cat limits. It’s been an excellent year. Tony Suriano is the Field Supervisor. Tony was promoted in January 2022 and resides in Denver. Mark Benoski, who lives in Ballwin, MO, is the field claims rep.

Jean Timm, Manager – Claims Customer Service, retired at the end of 2020, and Heidi Christensen has replaced her (she is also responsible for Roadside Rescuer). Tony Brecunier, VP of Workers Compensation Claims, will be retiring at the end of 2021, and John Oehler has been selected as his replacement – we will try to schedule travel for John.

Brett Purcell

We are having a strong year in Missouri, we are up 8.4% vs. a plan of 4%. Commercial Lines is up 12%; Specialty Lines up 8%; Personal Lines is down 4%, while the state has an overall premium retention of 95% and a loss ratio of 50%. We expect to end the year over $40 million in Direct Written Premium for the first time, with 13% in Personal Lines; 71% Commercial Lines, and 15% Specialty Lines. We would like Specialty Lines to be 20-25% of the book/mix and have plans, with your help, to grow this market segment the fastest. Our 2022 plan is to be up 5.5% for Missouri.

Kansas growth is down 2% vs. a plan of being up 5.2% year to date; this is mainly due to a large premium return audit, and we expect to end the year with positive growth. We are seeing 31% growth in Specialty Lines and decline of 5% in Commercial Lines, due to the audit, while our loss ratio currently sits at 60%. We are in the process of hiring a dedicated sales manager for the state and should have this person hired before year-end. We will finish 2021 close to $6 million in total Direct Written Premium with expectations to grow the state up to 15.6% in 2022. We feel the addition of the dedicated Sales Manager to Kansas will have a tremendous impact on our results and our agency relationships. We expect to see strong growth across the Commercial, Specialty, and Agribusiness products that are available to our Kansas partners.

Kristin Heiges

Our Marketing team is focused on creating content to support you. We’ve added two new roles in customer experience and user experience. One major project for us in 2022 is working on the refresh of mySECURA to improve user experience for our policyholders; the long-term goal is to expand functionality for additional lines of business.

Personal Lines

(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: We would like you to offer roof replacement endorsement. It is a barrier and it is important when moving an insured from a carrier that offers it to you.

Response: SECURA writes roofs 20 years or newer on a replacement cost basis automatically. Your underwriter has authority to retain replacement cost coverage on older roofs.

2. Comment: Deductible waivers on auto for a not-at-fault accident/uninsured are becoming more common.

Response: We’ll have our R&D team research this. We have not had this mentioned in other states.

3. Comment: Accident forgiveness?

Response: SECURA automatically includes Accident Forgiveness on all MILE-STONE policies for no additional premium. An accident is forgiven as long as the insured has been with SECURA three or more years and has had no accidents or violations in the last three years.

4. Comment: We would like monoline auto and/or home.

Response: Our product focus remains MILE-STONE home and auto.

5. Comment: Your system needs updating. It is lacking compared to competitors.

Response: SECURA has a systems modernization initiative. The target date has not been set for the MILE-STONE Link systems upgrade.

6. Comment: You aren’t on the Applied rater platform.

Response: Our Personal Lines IT team is currently programming this, and it will be ready near year-end.

7. Comment: Are you familiar with subscription car services?

Response: Yes, and we’re monitoring this alternative to owning and leasing in terms of primary/excess auto insurance needs.

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Commercial Lines

(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: For Manufacturing, it seems you are more cautious on product liability and have a more narrow appetite than competitors have.

Response: We appreciate the feedback as we continue to work through this class of business in an aim to grow this area of our book. There will be additional training on Manufacturing in 2022 for our underwriters, as we will strive to be a more steady market for accounts we have a desire to write.

2. Comment: Our perception is that you “tap out” early – get uncomfortable. We are trying to figure out if you want these larger accounts (take a human approach and discuss).

Response: This is valuable feedback, and we will continue to work with our underwriter team to hear the story behind an account and work at providing better clarity on our appetite for larger type accounts.

3. Comment: We would like to see composite ratings for auto and GL.

Response: Thank you for the feedback.

4. Comment: We are happy with underwriters/underwriting division. They are good people.

Response: This is great to hear. We are glad we are meeting expectations.

5. Comment: BizLink

    1. We would like to see a nicer proposal (too large) and maybe a summary one/page.
      Response: Thank you for your feedback. I am happy to say that we do have a quote proposal enhancement on the radar, and we hope to implement it in the near future.
    2. How long do you “lock” an account if submitted by another agent?
      Response: If another agent previously submitted an account in BizLink, our standard AOR procedures would apply. In order to become the agent of record, we would need a signed AOR letter and a completed submission. An agency has 10 days, once they begin a quote, to complete that quote. If another agent comes in and wants to quote the same business, and it has been more than 10 days and the first agency has not completed it, the second will be allowed to quote it.
    3. You need better prefill (Cope?)
      Response: This is something on our radar that we will be looking into.

6. Comment: 12-pay would be nice on commercial.

Response: We value this input, and we will continue to review our process with respect to payment plan options.

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Specialty Lines

(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: Roll off trucks – are you interested in auto risks?

Response: Roll Off Trucks that are doing refuse hauling can be considered in our Commercial Lines underwriting unit.

2. Comment: Do you offer specialty auto?

Response: We do write Commercial Auto on most of the classes we offer. In terms of pure “specialty” auto, I would say that our writing of Food Trucks falls into this category. Please contact your underwriter or sales manager for more information on this class of business.

3. Comment: Other carriers have broader appetite.

Response: Thank you for this feedback. We are constantly are looking for ways to expand our appetite. If you have any specific ideas, please forward them to our Vice President of Specialty Lines, Kevin Klestinski at

4. Comment: Will you write stand-alone EPLI? (West Bend will write this)

Response: Yes, we do write write monoline EPLI, we would love for you to consider us a market for this coverage.

5. Comment: Do you write For-Profit D&O?

Response: Currently, we only write nonprofit D&O in the Specialty Lines underwriting unit. We will add this to our list of things to consider in the future.

6. Comment: Do you have an appetite for garages?

Response: SECURA’s appetite for garages can be found in the Commercial Lines underwriting unit. I would encourage you to contact your Commercial Lines underwriter or sales manager if you have a specific risk you would like us to consider.

7. Comment: Hired and non-owned – there is a challenge in the marketplace.

Response: We agree. For the amount of rate you get for this coverage, there is major risk involved. We want to continue to be a market for this coverage when we write the package business, so we are watching this marketplace very closely.

8. Comment: We would like if you required less up front supplemental – just for quoting process to see if competitive.

Response: Thank you for the feedback. We are constantly looking for ways to update our questionnaires so we are only asking for the information we “need to have” vs. asking questions that are “nice to have.” As a reminder, we do take competitors’ questionnaires as long as we can successfully underwrite an account.

9. Comment: We would like improved response time (you are slower than others are and we have to call to inquire). We would like improved ease of doing business with you.

Response: Thank you for this feedback. Fortunately, we have been growing and we have had some growing pains in this area. This is not an excuse, and we will continue to look for ways to continue to provide world-class service to our agency force. We would also like to take this opportunity to mention the fact we are have a lot of great classes in our BizLink rating platform, we would love for you to give it a try.

10. Comment: We would like to see hit lists/what are your successes.

Response: Fortunately, we have a very balanced book of business, which is largely made up of Human Service Risks, Specialty Contractors, and Sports/Recreation operations. If you look at pure premium, Human Services and Specialty Contracting are our largest segments. From a hit ratio perspective, our Sports and Recreation segment has the highest hit ratio. We definitely appreciate any opportunity you can provide us in these segments. In terms of a “Hit List,” please contact your underwriter or sales manager and they can accommodate this request. Hit lists are also available to order or download from the Sales Resource Center.

11. Comment: Will you write GL (tree/lawn care – write two policies)? This is a growth area.

Response: We will write tree care and lawn care. These are underwritten in two different underwriting units, however we at SECURA strive to be easy to do business with therefore we would write these on one policy and not two if at all possible. We try and communicate between business units to make this a reality so you do not have break the risk apart. Please contact your sales manager if you have a specific example.

12. Comment: Your service needs to keep up with your growth model.

Response: Please see our response to this in comment 9 above.

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Farm-Ag Lines

(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: What is your Ag appetite?

Response: We have been writing Agribusiness at SECURA for 11 years, and our appetite remains consistent in the areas of Ag Contractors, Retail, Growers, Food Product Manufacturing, and some Ag Transportation. Custom Farming, Drainage/Irrigation, Chemical Dealers, Aquaponic/Hydroponics, Grower/Packer/Shippers, Dairy Product Manufacturing, and Grain Hauling are all types of risks that we often consider. Check out our Ag Hit List on AgentLink at any time. 

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Risk Management

(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: Dina is awesome.

Response: Thanks for saying so! She will be retiring in April of 2022, and we will miss her. If you know of any rock stars that will fit the way SECURA does business, please refer them to your sales manager or Dom Mongarella, Director of Risk Management –

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(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: All good – no news is good news.

Response: Thanks for the feedback. It is great to hear that you are not currently experiencing any claims issues.

2. Comment: We aren’t having any claims issues.

Response: It is great to hear that you have no claims issues at the present time.

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(Agent comments with SECURA responses)

1. Comment: We would like to see you expand into Arkansas, Texas, or Tennessee.

Response: These states are not currently in the top 10 we are considering, but we will be expanding into more states in the near future and would encourage you to continue to communicate where you would like to see us expand next.

2. Comment: Your agent portal is a good platform and easier to use than other carriers.

Response: Thank you for this feedback. Our goal is to make AgentLink easy for you to navigate so you can quickly find the information and resources you need.

3. Comment: Your insured portal must have bill pay ability and capability to print auto ID cards.

Response: These features are on our list for mySECURA, our policyholder website. We are starting with functionality for Personal Lines policyholders, with long-term goals to expand this for other lines of business.

4. Comment: Your sell sheets are nice – on par with other carriers.

Response: Thank you for this feedback. We strive to provide a variety of sell sheets and marketing materials that are easy for you to download, order, and use with your clients.

5. Comment: We like the Nurse Hotline sell sheet.

Response: Thank you! You have access to this sell sheet and many others via the Sales Resource Center on AgentLink.

6. Comment: You should review and update your dividend sell sheet.

Response: We appreciate this feedback. We will review this piece and make sure it is up to date.

7. Comment: Training – would like assistance with onboarding new producers.

Response: We love helping with onboarding new producers. We have a plethora of options for them, which we’ve included below for you. If you have any questions about our training options, please reach out to our Manager of Agency Training – Angela Kain at

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