Advisor Today magazine is pleased to announce this year's Four Under Forty. The award is given annually to four outstanding advisors who achieve excellence in their profession before or by the age of 40.
Published by the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, Advisor Today solicits nominations for NAIFA members with successful careers and strong commitments to family and community.
“The four recipients of the 2012 Four Under Forty Award demonstrate what advisors can achieve with dedication and commitment to their industry and professional participation in NAIFA,” noted Dr. Susan Waters, CAE, NAIFA’s CEO. “All of them have careers that are firmly on the path to continued growth and success.”
Echoing these sentiments is Ayo Mseka, Advisor Today’s editor-in-chief. “We are proud to recognize the rising stars in our industry,” she said. “The four advisors who are joining the ranks of the Four Under Forty this year are hard-working and dedicated NAIFA members, with an unwavering commitment to professional excellence.”
The 2012 Four Under Forty winners are:
Anna Marie Downs
Registered Representative, Eisenmann & Associates
Downs, 27, began her financial career as an intern during college and began working full-time upon graduation. Since then, her production has steadily increased and she has qualified for two consecutive Ohio National Financial Services Council of Honor. Downs is an active member of NAIFA and is the past president of NAIFA-Minnesota in Lake Superior, MN.
L. Ronco Johnson, LUTCF
President and CEO, L.R. Johnson & Associates Inc.
President, NAIFA-Cartersville (Georgia)
Johnson, 38, is a former jazz radio personality in Atlanta and a former NCAA basketball player for Kennesaw State University in Georgia. Johnson has built a solid practice focusing on the needs of business owners, executives, professional athletes, and entertainers. He was recognized among the “Who’s Who of Professionals and Executives” for 2011-2012, and The American Chronicle’s “Business Person of the Week.” Johnson, president of NAIFA-Cartersville, founded The Ronco Johnson Foundation for Financial Literacy in 2009. The foundation provides financial literacy to economically disadvantaged families and children.
Robert Hendrickson, CLU, ChFC, CASL, CFP, LUTCF
Financial Advisor, New York Life
Hendrickson, 31, a former music teacher, had few business contacts upon entering the life insurance business and, according to his nominator, would have left the profession without his dedication and perseverance. He looked for mentors and found ways to transfer his strong work ethic into successful sales. Before the end of his first year, he was recognized with a top award in sales. Hendrickson is active in NAIFA-Springfield, serving as secretary, treasurer, and PAC chair. He has personally recruited five new members to NAIFA and is currently enrolled in NAIFA’s Leadership in Life Institute (LILI).
President and CEO, SimkowitzCo.
NAIFA-Greater (New York) Metro Region
Simkowitz, 34, founded SimkowitzCo. in 1999 and earned the #1 agent of the year award from The Guardian Life Insurance Company in 2009 and 2011. At Guardian, Simkowitz created an innovative recruiting program to bring new financial representatives to Guardian’s national sales force. The “Be a Guardian Hero” program has resulted in hundreds of referrals from financial advisors and a number of highly qualified new hires. Simkowitz served as the 2010-2011 president of the Executive Committee of Guardian’s Leader’s Club, the youngest professional to hold that position to date.
Look for the cover story on these outstanding advisors in the September/October issue of Advisor Today.
About NAIFA: Founded in 1890 as The National Association of Life Underwriters (NALU), NAIFA is one of the nation’s oldest and largest associations representing the interests of insurance professionals from every Congressional district in the United States. NAIFA members assist consumers by focusing their practices on one or more of the following: life insurance and annuities, health insurance and employee benefits, multiline, and financial advising and investments. NAIFA’s mission is to advocate for a positive legislative and regulatory environment, enhance business and professional skills, and promote the ethical conduct of its members.
For more information, go to: NAIFA.org: It Pays to Be a Member.