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Our Model

The SIAA Model

Strategic Independent Agents Alliance (SIAA) is an international alliance dedicated to helping smaller independent property/casualty agencies grow while increasing their income and value. Additionally, SIAA provides a proven solution for direct writers, captive agents and producers to establish independent agencies from scratch. SIAA also provides a means for life/health agencies and financial service agencies to account round residual property/casualty products to their existing agency clients thereby increasing profitabilty. Assure Alliance is the exclusive SIAA territory covering N. Georgia and South Carolina.

Our Members

Our Company Partners

We represent a carefully selected group of competitive national and regional insurance companies allowing you to place coverage with the company offering the best protection and most competitive rates. Our impressive lineup of regional carriers is just one important factor that differentiates us from our "perceived" competition.

Meet The Team

Ben Taylor

BEN TAYLOR

FOUNDER

Ben Taylor, CEO of Assure Alliance and AssureSouth, is a Southeast insurance entrepreneur who brings both experience and deep industry knowledge to the retail insurance landscape. Taylor, who acquired his first insurance agency in 1989, has overseen the growth of Assure Alliance into a leading provider for insurance products, industry services, and “best in class” management and marketing programs. The thriving company was recently named one of the “Top 100” privately owned insurance companies in the United States.

Taylor, a Spartanburg, SC native, holds a BS in Economics from Wofford College and is a former Naval Officer. He is an active community member with memberships in the Sertoma Club, Trinity United Methodist Church and Vistage, an executive leadership organization.

CHRISTINE TAYLOR, CIC, CWCU

EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT

Christine graduated from Appalachian State University in 1996 and began her insurance career underwriting P&C for Selective Insurance Company, and then The Hartford Insurance Group, both in Charlotte, NC. While at The Hartford, Christine became a technical resource and trained office and agency staff across North and South Carolina and the Midwest on the company’s Internet and various electronic capabilities to improve their ease of doing business. The underwriting and training experiences eventually positioned Christine to assume the role as Sales Rep for The Hartford in Eastern South Carolina, where she successfully achieved her company’s goals and objectives. Christine works in conjunction with AAI’s COO and CEO on projects and initiatives, serves as a carrier liaison, and coordinates the annual business meeting for the membership, sponsors and staff.

In her down time, she enjoys saltwater fishing and entertaining family and friends.

HOLLY HERRON

CEO

Holly Herron was born in Milan, Italy but grew up in the small town of Clarksville, Arkansas after moving there as a kid. Holly attended the University of Arkansas where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting in 1997 and later went back for and completed her MBA in 2007. She moved to Greenville, South Carolina in 1998. Holly spent 11 years in Manufacturing in progressive financial leadership positions. In 2009, she accepted the CFO position at a regional insurance agency, Rosenfeld Einstein, for 5 years before snagging the opportunity to work for Assure Alliance in October 2014. Holly manages all partner carrier relationships, recruiting, operations and works with members to optimize their revenue potential within the Alliance. Holly enjoys traveling, reading and family time on Lake Keowee with her husband of 21 years, Ryan, son Seth and Westie Winston - 12 and 7 years old.

JEFF SWANSON

REGIONAL PRESIDENT, GEORGIA

Jeff Swanson was born in Pennsylvania, but has lived in a total of six states including Georgia twice and now resides back in the Palmetto State. He graduated from Presbyterian College in 1985 as a business major with a psychology minor. His first job was with Travelers as a commercial lines underwriter working in Columbia, SC. He left Travelers when the office closed after hurricane Hugo in 1989. Following Travelers, he went to work for Companion Property & Casualty Insurance Company in Columbia as an underwriter, and also worked in product development and ultimately marketing. In 2000 Jeff stumbled across SIAA and has never looked back! Jeff works with emerging and existing agencies demonstrating the benefits of membership in Assure Alliance. Jeff’s hobbies include golf, running, watching sports and listening to music. Jeff has two wonderful children - Erica, 24 and Collin, 21.

HEATHER GASTON

REGIONAL VICE PRESIDENT, SOUTH CAROLINA

Heather Gaston is a born and raised native of GA where she spent most of her childhood with her grandparents. She has a son that she home-schooled who is now a local practicing veterinarian. Her grandparents were instrumental in helping her as a single mom so she now has an active role in being caretaker in their golden years. Her insurance career began in 2001 with life and health then continued to grow from there. Heather’s experience has encompassed all sides of the retail agency from captive working for her husband in his State Farm agency, to being a producer for an independent agency, to starting her own captive agency with Nationwide Insurance. She moved on from there and joined Assure Alliance as a member in 2014. She is now exciting to start this new chapter and bringing her experience to our team as RVP. In her downtime, you will find Heather on the tennis courts or spending time with her family.

CHELSEA GOFF

MEMBER DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Chelsea joined the Assure Alliance team as Member Development Manager in April 2015, responsible for working with members to maximize their opportunities with partner carriers and facilitating training and development offerings within Assure Alliance and SIAA. She has almost 10 years in the industry with experience on both the retail and wholesale side of the business. As a South Carolina native, she is excited to be back in her hometown after three years in Charlotte, North Carolina. Graduating from Clemson University in under four years with a degree in business management and a minor in travel and tourism, she has a determination to accomplish goals and can be a bit of a workaholic, but when it is time to relax she enjoys traveling with her husband Roger, to various destinations across the United States and in the Caribbean and hanging out with their furry baby, Beaufort.

BRITTNEY BASS

PLACEMENT SPECIALIST, PERSONAL LINES

Brittney Bass is one of the newest additions to the Assure Alliance team. She began working for AssureSouth as a Personal Lines Account Manager in May 2015 and recently began her position with Assure Alliance. Brittney is originally from Gaffney, South Carolina. She met and married her husband, Jason while he was in the United States Marine Corps and he was deployed to Iraq only one week after they wed. During that time, Brittney decided that she wished to pursue a career in the insurance industry and has been a licensed agent for over 3 years. Brittney assists members in selecting the right carrier for their risk, facilitates training and use of EzLynx rating engine, and monitors placement activity for direct appointment approval. Brittney and Jason were recently granted the adoption of their 4 year old son. She enjoys family time, attending church, friends, and spoiling her French bulldogs, Moose & Mabel.

BETTY RAMSEY, CPIW

PLACEMENT SPECIALIST, COMMERCIAL LINES

Betty Ramsey is originally from Northeast Iowa where she grew up on a dairy farm. After graduating high school she attended business school and then worked in a small insurance agency for 4 years. She moved to South Carolina in 1982 and began working for AssureSouth (formerly McNeill-Patterson) in 1982. Betty assists members in selecting the best carriers to place the business being submitted directly in their agency or through Access Plus and manages the placement activity with each carrier to promptly convert members to direct appointments. Betty enjoys spending time with family- especially her husband of 27 years and their daughter Allyson, a recent Clemson graduate. She also enjoys sailing Lake Hartwell, walking, biking, watching football and spending time with her dog, Ruby.

DANA APPLE

BUSINESS ANALYST

Dana Apple grew up in Reidsville, NC where she worked on her family’s tobacco farm and spent her childhood in the garden, picking strawberries, cleaning out cow stalls, getting up hay, and playing basketball with her two older brothers. While attending the University of North Carolina at Greensboro to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management, she played on the basketball team for the Division I school. She also graduated with a Concentration in Human Resources and a Minor in Clothing & Textiles. Dana joined Assure Alliance in February of 2015. Her role encompasses Netweb reporting, code maintenance, documentation, and reporting compliance for all 140+ members. Dana has two children- a son named Dylan and a daughter named Darla. They stay very busy with sports activities, Boy Scouts and social events. In her spare time you can find her mowing her three acres of grass, hanging out with friends and family or playing softball.

AMBER DENTON

COMMUNICATIONS AND EVENTS COORDINATOR

Amber is a born and raised native of Spartanburg where she attended Spartanburg Community College for Business Administration. Amber was employed with AssureSouth for 2 years beginning in late 2013 as the receptionist. She then got licensed as a P & C Producer and was promoted to Office Manager. Amber joined the Assure Alliance team in early 2016. Amber project manages all member events and communication, PR laision, as well as prospecting marketing campaigns. In addition, you might reach Amber when using Access Plus PL on days Brittney is out of the office. Amber’s interests include reading, crafting, and spending time with her husband, Evan and handsome baby boy, Raylan!