The Insurance Library Association of Boston’s 2019 Insurance Professional of the Year
Nancy Z. Bender
Bender Hatch Insurance
Nancy Bender is president of Bender Hatch Insurance which was formed with the merger of the H.R. Hatch Insurance Agency and the Nancy Z. Bender Insurance Agency in April of 2017, 40 years after Nancy founded her own agency.
Nancy started her career as an insurance agent and CSR when she was offered a position at Robert Clark Insurance and provided with support to obtain her license. She took a hands-on approach from the start, seeking to speak and meet with clients to understand their situations and coverage needs. Nancy was given the responsibility of managing the agency during an eight-month period when its owner was out on sick leave, and she not only kept it afloat but managed to grow the business. Inquisitive and hard-working by nature, she spent long hours at the office and learned the commercial side of the business by asking questions of clients, adjusters and underwriters, and by reading the contracts, until she was confident that she understood the situation and the coverage. That experience gave her the confidence to start her own agency, with the blessing of her former boss and mentor, in April of 1978.
Nancy started her business with a small book of business, a couple of metal desks, a $200 typewriter and a donated file cabinet. She did not have a contract with a carrier until the Friday before she was set to open her doors when she received a call from Travelers offering her an all-lines contract starting Monday, April 3, 1978. She has represented Travelers throughout her career and was twice named a Travelers Agent of the Year award which “recognizes business leaders for their proven ability to attain the highest standards of success in our industry through hard work, commitment and the responsibility to do it right.” In 1982, Nancy received her second contract with Vermont Mutual after which many companies followed.
Nancy grew her business almost entirely through referrals, a testament to her clients’ appreciation of her personal touch. When Nancy merged with H.R. Hatch her premium volume was approximately 17 million.
She was appointed by The Office of Governor William Weld to the Governing Committee of Commonwealth Auto Reinsurers (CAR) and served for six years offering a common-sense perspective on the issues facing the state’s residual market. She has served on The Insurance Library’s Board of Trustees for twenty-two years and supports many non-profit organizations including Bunker Hill Community College, the MSPCA, Lazarus House, and the Animal Rescue League of Boston.