Faculty NameRobert Ford
Robert Ford is Senior Vice President, and Director of the Claims Division for American Insurance Center. Bob started in the insurance business at age 19, when he was hired by Nodak Mutual Insurance Company as a territory producer in Wahpeton, North Dakota, and later transferred to Dickinson North Dakota.
Bob returned in 1978 to Devils Lake, North Dakota to work in and purchase the family run agency. He has been with Ford Insurance Agency ever since.
Bob has since involved himself in the insurance industry participating in several programs. Early in his career he started training with the IIAA of Iowa at the University of Iowa on an annual basis with their agency management school. These sessions were led by nationally known Dr. Emmett Vaughn. Those sessions helped Bob to lay the foundation for a good understanding of the insurance industry and the agency company relationships.
Bob was elected to serve on the Board of Directors for North Dakota PIA (Professional Insurance Agents), and served in that position for 13 years. During that time his favorite activity was chairing the education committee. He held that position for eight years. Bob especially enjoyed chairing the education committee because in his view education is critical to a successful career. He has been privileged to serve as North Dakota PIA President and has also served as North Dakota PIA National Director.
In trying to further his education, Bob completed his CIC designation in 2001, and his CISR designation in 2006. In addition, he has earned the following insurance designations, CPIA (Certified Professional Insurance Agent), CLCS (Commercial Lines Coverage Specialist), MLIS (Management Liability Insurance Specialist), and CRIS (Construction Risk Insurance Specialist).
Enjoying education so much, Bob continues his educational pursuits by teaching many insurance workshops each year around the country, and is also a member of the national faculty for the Society of Certified Insurance Counselors.
Faculty NameCatherine Trischan
Cathy Trischan has been with the E&K Insurance Group in Eatontown, New Jersey since 1996, and currently serves as Director of Commercial Underwriting. She began her insurance career upon graduation from Rutgers University in 1987. She has worked as a claims adjuster for a major property and casualty carrier as well as in the commercial departments of several large, New Jersey agencies.
In addition to her work with E&K, Cathy provides education and consulting services to other agents and brokers. She is a National Faculty member of The National Alliance, speaking in both the CIC and CISR programs. She is a regular presenter for the Professional Insurance Agents (PIA) and other organizations and has taught both pre-licensing and continuing education courses. Cathy has written courses and articles on various insurance topics.
A firm believer that one should never stop learning, Cathy holds several professional designations including CIC, CRM and CPCU. She earned her CIC designation in 1993 and her CRM designation in 2004.
Faculty NameAllen Messer
Allen Messer began his insurance career in March of 1971. He has worked for several different insurance companies in various capacities and has been involved in the independent agency system as a producer and agency owner.
Allen currently consults agencies, companies, risk managers, and attorneys as well as instructs various seminars and live webinars. He earned his CPCU designation in 1981 where he received the Distinguished Graduate Award for attaining the highest academic average in the Nation. He earned his CIC designation in 1977 and serves as an Educational Consultant and is a National Faculty member of The National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research.