BIIA Donates $5,000 to Victims of Hurricane Harvey

The Birmingham Independent Insurance Agents (BIIA) association donated $5,000 to Trusted Choice’s Disaster Relief Fund to help people impacted by Hurricane Harvey.

The hurricane, which made initial landfall in Texas, dumped more than 40 inches of rain in parts of Texas. Many businesses, homes, and personal belongings are destroyed, and many people are displaced.

“After watching the news coverage and seeing the devastation, I wondered how our local insurance chapter could help our fellow agents in Texas,” said BIIA president Margaret Ann Pyburn.

Harvey is the first Category 3 or higher storm to hit the Gulf Coast in more than a decade. Early estimates of insured covered losses are $10-$20 billion.

Though BIIA primarily serves agents and companies in the Birmingham area, they have been known to reach outside their local community to help others.

“Part of what we do is helping those, like us, in need. Last year we donated to the flood victims in Louisiana. This time Texas needs our help,” said Pyburn.

If you want to donate to Harvey’s relief efforts, Trusted Choice’s Disaster Relief Fund is accepting donations.

Trusted Choice’s Disaster Relief Fund provides financial aid to victims and surviving family members directly affected by Disasters. This includes the cost of supporting the social, economic, and psychological recovery of victims and surviving family members. They are currently accepting donations to help support the victims of Hurricane Harvey.

The Birmingham Independent Insurance Agents association (BIIA) is a non-profit organization that has served companies and agents of Birmingham since 1922. Unlike company-employed agents, independent insurance agents are a trusted choice for insurance because they represent more than one insurance company. Independent agents offer their clients a wider choice of auto, home, business, life, and health coverage as well as retirement and employee-benefit products. They are dedicated to serving their customers and the community.


Young Agents’ Committee Day is Your Chance to Let Your Voice be Heard!

We are excited for the next Young Agents’ Committee Day which is Wednesday, August 16th and we want you to come out and join us!

There are four committees that you can choose to sign up for. They are Membership Development Committee,
Young Agents Conference Committee, Legislative Conference Committee, and the Excalibur Education Foundation Committee which puts on the clay shoot fundraiser each year. Each one serves an important part in our industry and each would benefit from your involvement and ideas.

So why should you sign up and come out to Young Agents’ Committee Day next week?

It’s your turn to have a say in the future plans of what the association will be doing

This past year has been filled with many fun, informative, and beneficial events, but we want the upcoming year to be even better. How do we do that? You! By coming to Young Agents’ Committee Day, YOU can make the events even better. Your insights and opinions matter. We want to hear what YOU have to say!

It’s a great way to network with other company/agency personnel

Committee Day brings company and agency people together to work on projects and events for the association. You get to meet and work/volunteer alongside people of all different backgrounds. This is a great opportunity to put faces with the names you see coming across your inbox and continue to build relationships with those people you already know.

Bring on new ideas of what our association can do to bring more value to its members

An association is only as great as its members make it. We constantly want to grow and be beneficial to members. Doing the same thing over and over again won’t add value. That’s where YOU come in! What do you want the association to do to be meaningful to you? How can we serve agents and company people better? You know what’s important to you. Young Agents’ Committee Day is your opportunity to let us know!

Become a leader in our association and industry

Have you heard your coworkers speak of insurance people outside of your office? Ever wonder who they are? By coming to Committee Day, you start or continue the process of being a leader in the association and in the industry. Hopefully one day others will talk about how knowledgeable and helpful YOU are!

Still one the fence about whether you want to join us for Young Agents’ Committee Day? Well, hold your breath and take a leap of faith to do something that could really benefit you. It’s as easy as 1,2,3!

1- Read the available committees and see which one appeals to you.
2- Sign up by emailing Sarah Walker and/or sending in the Young Agents’ Committee Day form.
3- Show up at the Big I (141 London Parkway  Birmingham, AL 35211) on Wednesday, August 16th. We promise you won’t regret it!


BIIA Wants to Connect with YOU on social media!

BIIA has been busy in 2017 trying to reach out and connect with our members. We want to keep you abreast of not only what is going on in our local association, but also of what is going on in the industry and in other partner organizations. To do this we launched our website and blog in March of this year. Now members can easily see what BIIA is about and how to become more involved, not only with our organization, but also in the industry. Stop by the website to find out answers to frequently asked questions, find out who is on the board, and obtain the application for those who want to join the Birmingham Independent Insurance Agents association.

We also jumped into the social media realm to directly connect with you. We launched our facebook, twitter, and instagram accounts at the end of 2016. Since then we have connected with many of you and are excited to interact with you through these outlets. If you aren’t following us, check out the links below to quickly connect with us.

Facebook          Twitter          Instagram

Last month we launched the BIIA page on LinkedIn. Since LinkedIn helps people network and make connections, it seems fitting that our association be part of that. By following BIIA on LinkedIn, hopefully you can turn secondary connections into primary ones—especially if you attend any of our events and are able to meet our members. You can follow our LinkedIn page here.

We want to be more visible in your life and assist you in any way that we can. Let us know what we can do. After all, we are Birmingham’s local insurance association.

Four Reasons why the YA Summer Conference is a MUST ATTEND event!

This year’s Young Agents Summer Conference is July 27-29th at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Front Hotel. It is sure to be a memorable event that you don’t want to miss. Here is a countdown of four BIG reasons why you will want to attend:

4. Because learning new insurance selling “tricks” is always a good thing, especially if it can give you a leg up over competitors!

3. Because learning is good, but learning while simultaneously being at the beach sure does beat a day at the office!

2. Because learning while at the beach is nice, but playing corn hole against agents and company reps is fun networking!

  • 1. Because learning while at the beach and networking while playing games is enjoyable, but rocking out with The Molly Ringwalds is something you’ll always remember!

Don’t miss out on your chance to learn, network, have fun, and rock out at this year’s Young Agents Summer Conference!

You can register online or download the form. For more information check out the AIIA website.

The deadline for the hotel cut off date is June 26th, so book your room today! (Hotel Code AYO)


121st AIIA Convention Recap

Live Music, Tradeshow, Motivation and Loads of Laughs

The 121st Annual Convention & Tradeshow is in the books! The weather was perfect for a poolside welcome dinner that included a local band called Mr. Big & the Rhythm Sisters. Our group danced the night away and completed the evening with door prizes.

On Thursday, our company reps hosted the Tradeshow where over 60 agents visited each booth for their chance to win the Agents Grand Prize of $1,000. Brad Young with Insurance Planning in Anniston was our lucky winner, thanks to Berkley Southeast Insurance Group for sponsoring the prize. As soon as the tradeshow finished, Matt Jones motivated the crowd with his “Life’s A Marathon” story that brought them the VICTORY!

On Friday, IIABA Chair-elect Vaughn Graham installed our new officers during our Business Session and afterwards, while the sun was shining bright…we crowned new cornholes champs! Friday evening included a seated-dinner and Comedian Tim Cavangh, who left the crowd rolling in laughter. The draw down was better than ever with a new twist. Those numbers that missed the $100 drawing got put back into the pot for a $200 prize. Once it was paired down to the final four, the crowd was able to enourage one of the four to keep going, so Jeremy Smith with Salter Insurance Agency was knocked out and Don Boatwright (ATA Work Comp Fund), Celina Pence (ICAT) and Brittany Kruszewski (Coastal Professional Insurance) decided to keep the rest!!!

In-coming President, Haig Wright announced next years convention will be at The Grand Hotel in Point Clear, Alabama June 24-26, 2018!!!

BIIA Invites YOU to the May After Hours Social!

You definitely don’t want to miss the next BIIA after hours event which will be held on Thursday, May 18! Grab your coworkers and join us after work from 5 until 7 as we eat, drink, and socialize at Black Market Bar and Grill in the Colonnade off of Highway 280. This is a free event for BIIA members and is always an enjoyable time.

Check out the Invitation and be sure to email Sarah Walker to reserve your spot!

So why should you attend? Here are some reasons why we enjoy these events:

“I enjoy networking with my agents in a casual setting. You get to know people better outside of their office.”
Joanne Reed, The Sheffield Fund

“I always enjoy attending the BIIA after hours events because it is a great way to catch up with friends in the industry and to make new connections with other agents and insurance carriers.”
Mark Hughes, OM Hughes Insurance

“It’s fun to relax on Black Market’s patio and meet underwriters that may not get to visit the office. I like being able to put faces with names, or voices from the phone. Then we get to know each other better and build on the relationship that has already been established.”
Ivie Isler, USI Insurance Services

“The after hours events give you a chance to network with other agents and company people in a laid back casual atmosphere.”
George Boohaker, The Insurance Network Inc

What are some reasons you love attending the BIIA afterhours event? Let us know in the comments or on social media!

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AIIA Annual Convention & Trade Show

Since all BIIA members are part of the Alabama Independent Insurance Agents association, it is only fitting to let our members know about the upcoming AIIA Annual Convention.

The 2017 AIIA Annual Convention &Trade Show will be held June 7-9th at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, in Destin, Florida. The event promises to be a fun time with some amazing speakers including Motivational Speaker, Matt Jones; IIABA Chariman-Elect, Vaughn Graham; and Stand-up Comedian, Tim Cavanagh.

Though attendees will benefit from the conference sessions and trade show, convention organizers made sure to include time to socialize and network. The Welcome Reception and Dinner Pool Party will have live entertainment. Then there is the Corn Hole tournament and get togethers on the beach. Check out the Schedule of Events to see the specific times.

As a special treat, this year convention organizers decided to offer BOGO rates to Member Agencies. Register one agent at the full registration cost of $250, and the second licensed agent from the same agency will have no registration fee!  

Be sure to reserve your spot today! Find more information on the AIIA website.

  Matt Jones
​  Motivational Speaker
          Vaughn Graham
IIABA Chairman-Elect
Tim Cavanagh
​Stand-up Comedian

AIIA & Young Agents to host the 8th Annual Clay Shoot

The 8th annual Sporting Clays Event to benefit the Excalibur Education Foundation will be held on Friday, April 21 at Selwood Farm in Alpine, Alabama.

Proceeds from the event help fund the Capps-Calhoun Excalibur Education Scholarship. The Foundation provides scholarships to deserving students pursuing a career in insurance.

Last year, the event raised approximately $13,000. Multiple students were able to benefit from scholarships the foundation provided.

To register, volunteer, or help sponsor this year’s event, you can fill out the 2017 Registration Form or Register Online!

To learn more about the scholarship foundation and its recipients, contact the association office at (205) 326-4129.


10:30 A.M. Registration & Sign In

11:30 A.M. Lunch

12:15 P.M. Selwood Safety Review

12:30 P.M. Shotgun start

3:30 P.M. Awards Reception & Prizes

March After Hours Recap

The first after hours event of the year took place on Thursday, March 16th at the Black Market Bar and Grill in the Colonnade. The event hosted more than 45 BIIA members.

Members networked with fellow industry peers while enjoying food and drinks. They also were able to view the first round of the NCAA Basketball Tournament thanks to the venue’s multiple televisions broadcasting the games.

After hours events are free to BIIA members and occur multiple times throughout the year.


BIIA Donates $20,000 to United Ability

The Birmingham Independent Insurance Agents hosted their Annual Gala at LINCPoint on January 27th, 2017. More than 150 people attended the annual event which included food, music, a silent auction, casino style games and door prizes. All proceeds from the event are donated to a charity at the discretion of the current chapter president.

BIIA delivers check to United Ability representatives.

BIIA President Margaret Ann Pyburn of Cobbs Allen stated United Ability offers many valuable programs that benefit kids and adults in the Birmingham community. She said “I have personally seen the results of their services since my niece has Spina Bifida, so I have a real heart for the work that they do. When asked to select a charity to benefit the Gala, United Ability was an easy choice.”

United Ability CEO, Dr. Gary Edwards shared, “What a tremendous honor to be this year’s recipient of the BIIA gala proceeds. Every dollar received will support the advancement of medicine, technology & therapies for people living with ALL types of disabilities from birth throughout their lives. Thank you, BIIA, for helping transform lives.”

The adults that participate in the Adult Day Program contributed to the festivities by hand painting floral clay pots for centerpieces on the dinner tables.

Recently, representatives from BIIA met representatives at LINCPoint and presented the donation check for $20,000.

The Birmingham Independent Insurance Agents of Alabama (BIIA) is a non-profit organization that has served companies and agents of Birmingham since 1922. Unlike company-employed agents, independent insurance agents are a trusted choice for insurance because they represent more than one insurance company. Independent agents offer their clients a wider choice of auto, home, business, life and health coverage as well as retirement and employee-benefit products. They are dedicated to serving their customers and the community.

United Ability is a non-profit organization. Their mission is to provide innovative services connecting people with disabilities to their communities and empowering individuals to live full and meaningful lives. They envision a world where disability is neither defining nor limiting and unite people with unique abilities in achieving a successful future. United Ability serves more than 4,000 children and adults with disabilities including but not limited to: intellectual disabilities; traumatic brain injury; developmental disabilities; cerebral palsy; autism; Down syndrome and spina bifida. Visit United Ability online at

For photos of the event, see About Town’s coverage of the BIIA Gala.