NAIFA - North Dakota  

President's Message


Local Reports

2010 State Convention






Dakota Advisor
Winter 2009


Presidents Message
by Keith Phillips, LUTCF

How would you feel if you woke up tomorrow, picked up the paper and the headlines read, “Due to the current deficit, Congress has approved legislation that would make sweeping changes to the way that life insurance and insurance related products are taxed?”

If you have been following what has been taking place on Capitol Hill lately, you will realize that the above headline is becoming more reality than ever before.  I sense complacency with many individuals in our industry who feel that this is just a threat that we hear every year.  As a matter of fact they are right.  We have all been hearing this for years and only due to the diligent efforts of NAIFA have we been able to thwart off much of this negative legislation.  We cannot let up.  It is more important than ever that we contribute to IFAPAC and also to get involved in grassroots efforts. 

Abraham Lincoln said, “Those who are not politically active are governed by those who are.”  In other words, we can protect the future of our industry or we can leave it to others outside of our industry to decide for us.  Is that what you want?

[back to top]


 Pioneer Mutual Insurance Company

[back to top]

NAIFA-ND 2010 State Convention
   By Tim Deitemeyer

"This is our Time", this is it!  Please mark your calendaers and plan to attend the 2010 NAIFA-ND/Fraternal Congress/FIC State Convention April 28, 29, and 30th at the Doublewood Inn in Fargo ND!!!
If you have never come, maybe came to one in the past, or if you come to the State Convention every year, this is going to be one to not miss!  Great food!  Great speakers/CE! Great fellowship and fun!!  We have organized this convention to keep your costs to attend at a minimum and your return on investment to a maximum!!
The 2010 State Convention currently consists of a speaker lineup that includes:

  • Karen Tyler, ND Securities Commissioner!

  • Dave Evenson, Top of the Table Producer from Grand Forks!

  • Jim Johnson, with Hallett Financial in Fargo and one of the best CE presenters!

  • Roger McCullough, NAIFA Liaison "State of the State"

  • Adam Hamm, ND Insurance Commissioner

  • Van Mueller, Headline and Keynote speaker!  Van has been a main platform MDRT and Top of the Table speaker, Van's bio reads like a book!  Van is going to show us why this is the "Greatest Time Ever" to be an insurance and financial advisor.  Van will show us how we are the most valuable people on the planet at this time and how to showcase this "Value"!!!
    YAT,  please attend if you are a YAT, we have an excellent YAT social party and food organized and you might even win some stuff!!
    GOLF, Golf is planned on April 28th at the beautiful Meadows golf course in Moorhead MN!  Enjoy some great golfing on the area's best "floodproof" course!
    Food, Fellowship, and Fun!  This is a lonely career, lets help support each other and our industry!  We need it now more than ever!
    Please come April 28, 29th, and 30th to the Doublewood Inn in Fargo ND!!


  [back to top]


NAIFA - Fargo Moorhead
By Shawn Gruenberg

Our association has been working on a sponsorship package to make it very easy for companies that sponsor our meetings, golf tourney and awards banquet each year.  We are attempting to keep up with the many legislative bills that threaten to dramatically change the way in which we do business today.  In November we had Michael Fix, Director of the Life and Health Division & Actuary with the ND Dept. of Insurance as our continuing education and luncheon speaker.  Currently we are planning a contact blitz to our January renewing members to discuss the tremendous value NAIFA provides along with the necessary increase in our dues.  On behalf of NAIFA Fargo-Moorhead, I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

NAIFA - Minot

By Elaine Schilla, President

With Thanksgiving over and Christmas on the way, we at NAIFA Minot want to wish all of you a blessed Christmas season with much joy in the holidays.

 Minot has been busy with the legislative reception in October, regular meetings in November and now in December we have the annual CE Blitz scheduled for the 11th of December.  Topics this year include “Medicare & Social Security,” “Liabilities and Risks,” and “Legislative Updates,” as well as information from the State Insurance Commissioner’s office and the ND Securities Department.

 This year we are fortunate in being able to host Mr. Roger Looyenga, former CEO and Chairman of Auto-Owners Insurance Group at a reception for all area insurance agents and financial services representatives on December 1, 2009.   Mr. Looyenga is the author of the book “Take the Stairs: Leadership Lessons Learned From a Lifetime of Service with Auto-Owners Insurance Company”.


NAIFA - Missouri Slope
by Jonathan Spilde, President

Greetings from Missouri Slope!  As we move into the Holiday season and the end of 2009, we are busy wrapping up our IFAPAC contacts.  In doing so we are asking all members to not only be mindful of the challenges facing our industry, but also of the very specific role NAIFA and IFAPAC have in preserving our chosen profession as agents.  In doing so, we position IFAPAC as more of a “business insurance premium” and NOT A DONATION!  This is an important distinction--especially at this time of year.  It is, after all, our job that allows us to support all of the other places and causes we choose to support.   IFAPAC is working to make certain that our business environment--and our role as agents-- is not side-tracked in the current flurry of legislative activity.  Not supporting IFAPAC would be like unplugging the sign advertising your business because it uses too much electricity—very short-sighted!  The same goes for our new member recruitment and membership renewals.  Membership is the key to keeping our business alive, and should be viewed by all of us as a necessity and not an option—another important point to make as we explain the dues increase.  NAIFA and IFAPAC are the eyes, ears, and voice of our livelihood.  They need—and deserve—our support!    

 NAIFA - North Valley
by Gregg Webster, President

After a lot of activity due to the Legislative Session last year, we seem to be suffering from a lack of focus.  There is interest in a LUTCF class locally.  We have several individuals expressing their opinions on the national health care issue.

Membership recruitment efforts are focused on a targeted list of local agents.

IFAPAC contributions are better than previous years.

We will be inviting local legislators to our meetings.

 [back to top]

APIC- Federal
By Dee Stroh, Chair

There has been a lot of action needed in the last few months to keep up with what is happening in Washington D.C.  I am hopeful all members are involved in getting in touch with senators and representatives and expressing their opinions regarding health care, etc.  The NAIFA website provides invaluable information for all of us. 

Locally Roughrider NAIFA had our Toys for Tots social --all legislators from the SW area were invited to attend. 

Best wishes for a very Blessed Holiday Season.

APIC - State

By Jim Simons, Chair

I need the local APIC chairs to send me their annual APIC plans.  Items that should be included in your plans are meeting with your Government Relations, Programs, and IFAPAC chairs to coordinate activities for the year; submitting a budget to your board of directors, and soliciting input from your members on their legislative contacts.  Don’t forget qualifying for the Bobo award.  Make sure you have an IFAPAC and APIC Chair.  Hold a fund raising event for IFAPAC.  Hold a legislative day.  Congratulations to Minot for holding a legislative forum in place of their normal membership meeting.  The Minot Association invited their local legislators from the area to a 5:00 p.m. social where beverages and snacks were served.  National Committeeman Todd Ringoen gave an overview of the most recent legislative session and the legislators were asked to comment on each of the issues.  I highly recommend each Association contact Elaine Schilla to find out how they went about this.  Our automated APIC contact roster is still being developed.  I will forward it out as soon as it is completed.  Remember your IFAPAC contributions need to be in by 31 Dec 09 to count for the Bobo Award.  I plan on attending the National IFAPAC/APIC training to be held on 22/23 Jan 2010.  I will give a report on that training in my next Dakota Advisor Article. 

[back to top]

By Gregg Webster, Chair

There is a vast amount of talk about health care.  Currently, much of the political focus is on the insurance industry.  While there have been a few comments about agents, most of the attention has been on companies.

 As agents, we need to help our customers understand the personal impact they will feel as the various proposals float through the press and political discussions.  Unfortunately, bringing forth facts does little or nothing to curb the emotions.  This makes for an extremely delicate environment.

 With the current proposals in Washington DC, there will be significant changes in the role of a health insurance agent.  Some basically eliminate the role of an agent, others mandate specific activities, and all will change before anything is final.

 Here in North Dakota, a proposal has been floated regarding the Premium Tax.  We will have to follow any developments.  Once again, the focus is on the companies, not on agents.

[back to top]



By Jeff Case, Chair

Merry Christmas!

 There is going to be a LILI program this fiscal year in North Dakota.  The first session will be held in Jamestown at the Gladstone Inn on January 19, 2010 beginning promptly at 8:00AM.

 A total of 8 candidates are registered and the books have been ordered.  There are three candidates each from Bismarck and Fargo, and one candidate each from Grand Forks and Minot.  Hopefully each of the locals is able and willing to reimburse their respective candidates a portion of their tuition cost.  NAIFA-ND will match each student reimbursement made by the local associations up to $100.00.  The reimbursement will be provided to the student upon successful completion of and graduation from the program.

 “Thank You!” to the four locals providing candidates for this years’ LILI program.  Hopefully we will have one or more candidates from each of our seven locals next year.

 Let’s support our candidates and our moderator, Jason Middaugh.

 Again, I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. 

   [back to top]

 Membership Report
by Jason Middaugh, Chair

We are almost half way through the year and membership is going strong but needs to improve.  We are having a membership contest with the local with the highest percentage growth every quarter receives $200.  The first quarter of the year Central was the winner.  Congratulations to Central.  We are nearing the end of the second quarter.  There is still a month left and there are many if not most locals still in contention for the award this quarter.  Thank you to all the local membership chairs and their committees on the work that has been done.  We need more volunteers for those committee’s and we need more work done.

North Dakota             
Local Start of Year Current Members New Members Renewed Members Lapsed Members Goal
NAIFA - Central North Dakota  22 25 3 6   23
NAIFA - Fargo Moorhead  214 203 9 65 21 225
NAIFA - Lake Region  8 9 1 0 0 9
NAIFA - Minot AIFA  69 63 2 13 6 70
NAIFA - Missouri Slope  102 96 2 26 7 104
NAIFA - North Valley AIFA  37 35 1 10 3 38
NAIFA - Roughrider  34 30 1 4 5 35
North Dakota Total  486 461 19 124 42 504


 [back to top]


NAIFA-North Dakota - 1811 East Thayer Avenue - PO Box 5010 - Bismarck, ND 58502 (701) 258-9525