The North Bay’s leaders in life, disability and health insurance were selected based on the company’s inclusion in the Business Journal Book of Lists. The firms were asked to submit names of individuals highlighted here for their life, disability and health coverages. (Listed alphabetically)
D. Bezona & Company,50 Old Courthouse Square, Ste. 310,Santa Rosa 95404, 707-576-1920,www.dbezona.com
D. Bezona & Company owner and President Deborah Bezona is the founding member and past president of the North Bay’s largest association of health benefits experts, the North Coast Association of Health Underwriters.
She has more than 30 years experience in the employee benefits field and launched her own business in 1989. Ms. Bezona earned her registered underwriter designation in 1992 and her benefits consultant designation two years later. She is also a former chair of the health care committee and board member for the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce, and she served on the state board for the California Association of Health Underwriters.
Additionally, she is a past president of the Big Brothers/Big Sisters organization.
Vantreo Insurance Brokerage, 100 Stony Point Road, Ste. 160, Santa Rosa 95401, 707-546-2300, www.vantreo.com
Vantreo Insurance employee benefits account executive and former small business owner Terry DeDecker joined the burgeoning brokerage in 2007 with more than 20 years experience in the industry.
Earning her bachelor’s and graduate degrees in geology, the New York-native spent a few years in a career related to her studies before joining Aetna as a marketing representative in individual and group health coverage. She went on to open her own insurance agency in Colorado, which she operated for seven years.
Ms. DeDecker holds a chartered life underwriter and registered health underwriter designation. She is a former Rotary International member of 10 years.
Vantreo was formed from the 2007 division of Matsen Insurance. The new brokerage has grown by more than 40 percent as a whole since then and increased its life, disability and health insurance premium volume by $12 million last year.
George Petersen Insurance Agency, 627 College Ave., Santa Rosa 95404, 707-525-2735, www.geopetersen.com
Mark Fess joined George Petersen Insurance Agency in October 2006, following a 27-year stint with ABD Insurance and Financial Services, which was later acquired by Wells Fargo. During his time with ABD, he worked as the executive vice president responsible for the employee benefits division. He is currently a vice president and partner leading the George Petersen employee benefits department.
In total, Mr. Fess has about 33 years experience in benefits, with special expertise in the financial areas of life, disability and retirement. He attended Santa Rosa Junior College and California State University, Sacramento, where he earned his bachelor’s. He is a past member of the Million Dollar Round Table and a past board member of YMCA.
George Petersen was founded in 1935 and is the ninth-largest life, disability and health insurer in the North Bay.