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Category: Press Release

AALU/GAMA CEO Urges Congress to Provide Additional Relief to Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. – AALU/GAMA CEO Marc Cadin today released the following statement urging Congress to restore funding to the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) emergency loan programs, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, which were depleted last week:

“Small businesses are struggling to survive and support their employees,” said Marc Cadin, CEO of AALU/GAMA. “Many are stuck in limbo without feedback or answers on their applications. We at AALU/GAMA are inspired by our members to do everything we can to provide financial security to them, their clients, and all those in need. We thank the Senate for their action today and urge the House to move swiftly to provide additional and sufficient relief to help these businesses, which so desperately need it.”

AALU/GAMA has hosted dozens of webinars open to the public on the resources provided by Congress and President Trump to help small businesses and their employees weather the economic storm produced by COVID-19. Thousands have attended the series, and the AALU/GAMA team has responded to hundreds of individual questions. AALU/GAMA members continue to extend the reach of this valuable information to advise their clients.

Cadin continued, “The immense popularity of these programs reflects the acute need to keep businesses and our economy afloat. Most of our members are small business owners and are still waiting to hear if they will be able to keep their staff on board and establish a path forward. We are grateful for the relief Congress has provided thus far and hope to see quick action to prevent further economic damage.”

Visit the AALU/GAMA COVID-19 Action Center here.

AALU/GAMA CEO: CARES Act to Bring Critical Relief When Our Nation Needs It Most

WASHINGTON, D.C.—AALU/GAMA CEO Marc Cadin today applauded passage of the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which was signed into law this afternoon. The CARES Act passed the House Friday, after the Senate approved the legislation unanimously earlier this week.

“The resilience of this nation is being tested,” said Marc Cadin, AALU/GAMA CEO. “We have a tough challenge before us, but with the CARES Act signed into law, Americans will receive critical relief to put the pieces back together. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the health of the global economy, how businesses operate, and the lives of our loved ones, and we all have to do our part to navigate this crisis together.”

The $2 trillion package provides loans and assistance for businesses of all sizes, direct payments to low- and middle- income individuals, and expanded benefits to the unemployed through July. In addition, people can access their employer-sponsored retirement funds without penalty up to $100,000, among other provisions.

Cadin continued, “We all have to do our part to ensure Americans have the necessary tools to restore their financial security, and we are here to help not only our members but every person in this profession and all the people they serve.”

In response to the pandemic, AALU/GAMA launched the COVID-19 Action Center for the financial security professionals to receive the resources they need to serve their business and clients. The portal features weekly webinars, podcasts, news updates, and exclusive content surrounding the global health crisis.


About AALU

AALU, the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting, is the leading organization of financial professionals who provide life insurance and retirement planning solutions for individuals, families, and businesses. AALU has a rich history of success with a single focus on the issues impacting life and annuity products, and the clients its members serve. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AALU is committed to providing its members with the essential tools and services required to help grow their businesses, serve their clients, and protect the financial and retirement security of the American people.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry.

AALU and GAMA International announced in July 2019 that they will be joining forces to create a new organization representing the financial security profession later this year.

AALU/GAMA Statement in Support of Cares Act

Emergency legislation will provide immediate relief to small businesses, health care providers, workers, and distressed industries

WASHINGTON, D.C.—AALU President and CEO Marc Cadin released the following statement in support of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act:

“This is a pivotal moment for our nation,” said Marc Cadin, AALU President and CEO. “Small businesses, many of which our members operate, and also serve as clients, are the backbone of our country, and it is critical that Congress acts to protect them, prevent our economy from even further damage, and for the millions of workers facing unemployment. We are no longer anticipating a health and economic crisis, it is here. We urge Congress to get this bill to the president’s desk to provide much-needed relief to our nation and those whose lives are in danger, and ultimately help put our nation back on the path to financial security.”

The legislation passed the U.S. Senate unanimously last night and will be voted on by the House on Friday. Recently, AALU launched the COVID-19 Action Center for the financial security profession. The website features webinars, podcasts, news updates, and exclusive content surrounding the global pandemic.

About AALU

AALU, the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting, is the leading organization of financial professionals who provide life insurance and retirement planning solutions for individuals, families, and businesses. AALU has a rich history of success with a single focus on the issues impacting life and annuity products, and the clients its members serve. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AALU is committed to providing its members with the essential tools and services required to help grow their businesses, serve their clients, and protect the financial and retirement security of the American people.

 

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry.

AALU and GAMA International announced in July 2019 that they will be joining forces to create a new organization representing the financial security profession later this year.

AALU/GAMA Launch Covid-19 Action Center: Navigating The Crisis Together

Online resource center to help financial security professionals serve their clients and operate their business during the novel coronavirus crisis

Washington, D.C. (February 18, 2020) – AALU, the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting, and GAMA International today launched the COVID-19 Action Center. The Action Center features best practices and tools for advisors to navigate this time for their businesses and their clients. It includes timely updates on COVID-19, member insight on remote work or client management, and the latest policy news that will impact the profession.

“This is an unprecedented time when Americans need us most,” said Marc Cadin, president and CEO of AALU. “The way Americans conduct business turned upside down in less than a week. With increased restrictions and market swings every day, we created this resource center as a guide to help our members and the entire financial security profession to continue doing business and serving their clients.”

“Although businesses may be physically shutting their doors, they need all the help they can get to continue operations,” said Bonnie Godsman, CEO of GAMA International. “This is new territory for our members and our country, and more than ever, it shows the importance of this noble profession. We felt it was important to equip them with resources, tools, and information to navigate through this new normal.”

The action center is available to the entire financial security profession. Webinars, podcasts, and exclusive content will be added to the portal weekly with curated news updates daily. The website can be accessed here.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry. GAMA announced on July 29, 2019, that it will be joining with AALU to form a new organization representing the financial security profession in 2020.

February 18, 2020 by Claudio Meira 0 Comments

AALU/GAMA Memberships Approve Creation Of New Organization, New Board Of Directors

98% approval from AALU, GAMA members, first Board of Directors appointed

Washington, D.C. (February 18, 2020) – After announcing their intent to create a new organization in July 2019, AALU and GAMA International today announced each membership has overwhelmingly voted to approve the creation of the new organization and its first Board of Directors.

“Simply put, this is historic,” Marc Cadin, AALU president and CEO, said. “The overwhelming yes votes show just how much support there is for unifying the financial security profession. It is time to change the status quo, and now we can officially get started.”

“The members have spoken, and there is no doubt that creating this new organization is what our profession needs,” Bonnie Godsman, CEO of GAMA International, said. The amount of support we have seen not only in the vote, but also from the thousands of conversations we have had, has given us the momentum to make this possible. We have been steadfast in making this a reality, and now we have even more momentum to do so.

“We’d both like to give our sincerest thank you to our members,” Cadin and Godsman said. “This wouldn’t be possible without their support and commitment to this effort. This is just the beginning. Working together, we will enhance financial security by changing the way the profession is represented.”

AALU and GAMA announced on July 29, 2019, that they would be creating a new organization representing the financial security of the profession. After a membership vote on the movement, AALU and GAMA members approved the dissolution of each organization to create of the new organization and its governing body consisting of the new Board of Directors. Cadin will serve as CEO of the new organization, and Godsman will serve as president.

The new Directors include a diverse representation from both memberships with a strong variety of roles, markets, demographics, and experience. Kelly Kidwell, of Pacific Advisors, an agency of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, will serve as the incoming chair of the new organization, and Jeri Turley, of Winged Keel, an M Financial firm, will serve as chair-elect. The full list of officers and Directors can be found here.

The new organization will be the first of its kind, representing and serving the entire financial security profession. It will be built on the best of both AALU and GAMA with three pillars of best-in-class advocacy, leadership and professional development, and elevating the profession.

In the coming months, AALU and GAMA will announce the new organization’s name, host their annual meetings, LAMP and TRANSFORM, combine operations and memberships, and officially become one organization.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry. GAMA announced on July 29, 2019, that it will be joining with AALU to form a new organization representing the financial security profession in 2020.

February 7, 2020 by Claudio Meira 0 Comments

AALU/GAMA Announces Earl Luttner As 2020 Hall Of Fame Recipient

Luttner recognized as outstanding leader, to receive highest honor bestowed upon insurance and financial security leaders

Reston, VA (February 7, 2020) – GAMA International today named Earl Luttner as its 2020 Hall of Fame recipient. Luttner is CEO and Chairman of Lifetime Financial Growth, LLC, an agency of Guardian Life, and will be recognized for his leadership, mentorship, advocacy efforts, and commitment to improving the client experience.

“Earl is not only an instrumental leader within GAMA International, but throughout this entire profession,” said Bonnie Godsman, CEO of GAMA International. “He has been an active member for years, obtaining our high honor of Master Agency and leading the way for 50 years for growing leaders within his firm. He is most deserving of this honor, and we are grateful for his many years of service.”

Through Earl’s influence and direction, Lifetime Financial Growth, LLC has qualified for GAMA International’s Master Agency Award an unprecedented ten times. He began his Guardian agency with only 12 representatives and has grown to employ more than 250 financial advisors.

“Earl has dedicated his professional career to our industry and serves as a role model for current and future agency builders,” said Leyla Lesina, senior vice president and head of agency distribution, the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America. “He is driven by a deep-rooted sense to improve the lives of all he touches and has lived his life and career as someone who inspires us all to dream, do, learn, and become.”

In addition to his over 50 years in the profession, Luttner is an avid champion in his community. He dedicates his time to the United Way of Allegheny County and Make-A-Wish Foundation of Pennsylvania and West Virginia. He served as Chairman of the Board of the International Assistance Group for 20 years and has been instrumental in helping US families adopt more than 2,900 children.

“It is a great honor to be recognized among the distinguished recipients of this award,” Luttner said. “My true hope is that my deep belief in helping others propels members of our own leadership team, as well as leaders throughout the entire financial services industry, to aspire to building firms into what they can truly become. By encouraging others to reach their maximum potential, even beyond that which they currently believe they are capable of achieving, we can all leave a positive mark on the world.”

The GAMA International Hall of Fame Award is regarded as the highest honor bestowed upon distinguished insurance and financial security leaders. This prestigious award will be presented at LAMP ’20 in Orlando, FL on March 23, 2020.

Nominees were evaluated by the Hall of Fame Selection Committee, which assessed each nominee’s history and accomplishments in four categories:

  1. Advancing the art and science of agency/firm building.
  2. Advancing the mission and work of the financial services industry.
  3. Enhancing the quality of public and private life.
  4. Promoting professional education in the financial services industry.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry. GAMA announced on July 29, 2019, that it will be joining with AALU to form a new organization representing the financial security profession in 2020.

AALU/GAMA Foundation Joins Efforts To Create New Organization And Expand Its Research-based Solutions

Falls Church, VA (August 13, 2019) – The GAMA Foundation for Education and Research is joining GAMA International and the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) in their effort to create a new and unified organization that represents the financial security profession. GAMA International and AALU announced their intent to merge on July 29, 2019, and the GAMA Foundation will be aligning its brand and messaging with the new organization.

“The GAMA Foundation is essential to the work we do and the tools we provide for our members,” said Bonnie Godsman, CEO of GAMA International. “The opportunity to come together with AALU will accelerate our ability to drive growth and greater value for our members, with the Foundation being a key pillar to the new organization’s success. Together we can elevate the profession and put more people on a path to financial security.”

“This is a moment the profession has needed for a long time,” said Marc Cadin, president and CEO of AALU. “AALU is excited to be joining GAMA and all it has to offer to create this new organization, with the research and education of the GAMA Foundation being such a critical component. We look forward to addressing some of the challenges the profession faces and working together to secure its future for generations to come.”

The new organization will build upon the best of both organizations to elevate and promote the profession. The founding principles guiding the new organization are: 1) best-in-class advocacy, 2) leadership and professional development, and 3) elevating the financial security profession.

“The GAMA Foundation’s mission to sponsor research and produce educational resources is perfectly aligned with the founding principles of the new organization,” said Debra Grommons, CEO of the GAMA Foundation. “It makes sense for the GAMA Foundation to join this endeavor. We’re thrilled for the opportunity to expand our research and provide solutions to all financial security professionals, from field leaders to advisors, and to contribute to elevating this incredible profession.”

The GAMA Foundation is an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. It will continue to be governed by its own board of trustees and bylaws and continue to serve as the philanthropic arm of the new organization.

About GAMA Foundation for Education & Research

GAMA Foundation for Education and Research is a 501(c)3 non-profit association. Its purpose is to sponsor research and produce educational resources that help field leaders in insurance and financial services run their businesses more effectively. The GAMA Foundation is the only organization in the world that does this.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry.

About AALU

AALU is the leading organization of financial professionals who provide life insurance and retirement planning solutions for individuals, families, and businesses. AALU has a rich history of success with a single focus on the issues impacting life and annuity products, and the clients its members serve. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AALU is committed to providing its members with the essential tools and services required to help grow their businesses, serve their clients, and protect the financial and retirement security of the American people.

AALU/GAMA To Build New Organization Representing The Financial Security Profession

First-of-its-kind organization will bring together GAMA’s leadership and professional development strengths and AALU’s best-in-class advocacy

Falls Church, VA (July 29, 2019) – The Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) and GAMA International today announced they will create a new organization representing the financial security profession. This organization will be the first of its kind in the industry, representing all distribution channels and bringing together the strengths of AALU’s advocacy and GAMA’s leadership and professional development.

“When you look across distribution, there is far more that unites the profession than divides it,” said Marc Cadin, president and CEO of AALU. “We intend for this to be the start of a unifying effort that will bring together the entire profession so that we can more effectively address its biggest challenges. This is a moment the profession has needed for a long time. It has been an honor to work with Bonnie, who has been extraordinary in both leadership and vision, and our joint task force to bring it to fruition.”

“AALU and GAMA are both independently strong and a perfect complement to each other,” said Bonnie Godsman, CEO of GAMA International. “The opportunity to come together will accelerate our ability to drive growth and greater value for our members. With AALU’s advocacy strengths empowering more people to get involved and GAMA’s leadership programs, the opportunities will be endless.”

“Our profession has needed this kind of representation for as long as I can remember,” said Frank Scalese, Managing Partner of Blue Ocean Solutions and president of GAMA’s Board of Directors. “Most people in our industry aren’t members of any one organization. That has to change – so we are creating a new organization, with a new mission, and a new name that will enable us to unify the entire profession.”

“Conversations about unification have been ongoing for three years, and Bonnie and Marc are the two leaders we have needed to make it happen,” said Ray Bening, president of Bening Financial and chairman of AALU’s Board of Directors. “GAMA has developed some of the strongest leaders in our industry. With their direct relationships with over 100,000 affiliated professionals, they are a perfect fit for us and our membership. We are going to create a model to help them grow their practice and advocate to protect their clients.”

The new organization will represent and serve the entire financial security profession, regardless of role, marketplace, or experience. It will be built on three pillars: elevating the profession, leadership and professional development, and best-in-class advocacy. It will have a new name, announced at a later date, and the two groups intend to operate as one no later than June 2020.

This past year AALU has seen significant advocacy victories, such as the inclusion of life insurance sales in the 199A tax deduction, passage of the SECURE Act in the House, and improved Transfer for Value rules. GAMA International has reinvented and increased participation in its annual conference, LAMP, grown its international operation to 22 countries with 9 chapters, and expanded member engagement offerings. Together, the memberships will total over 8,000 members.

Marc Cadin, who took over as president and CEO of AALU in September 2018, will serve as CEO, and Bonnie Godsman, who has served as CEO of GAMA for five years, will serve as president. Kelly Kidwell, of Pacific Advisors, will serve as the first chair of the Board of Directors, and Jeri Turley, of Winged Keel, will serve chair-elect. Ed Deutschlander, current chair of the GAMA Foundation, Rick Van Benschoten, current AALU Treasurer, and Bob Baccigalupi, current GAMA Treasurer, will serve as the remainder of the executive committee.

About AALU

AALU is the leading organization of financial professionals who provide life insurance and retirement planning solutions for individuals, families, and businesses. AALU has a rich history of success with a single focus on the issues impacting life and annuity products, and the clients its members serve. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AALU is committed to providing its members with the essential tools and services required to help grow their businesses, serve their clients, and protect the financial and retirement security of the American people.

About GAMA International

GAMA International is an independent national nonprofit organization 501(c) (6), founded more than 85 years ago. GAMA International is the only association dedicated to promoting the professional development needs and leadership skills of first-line and front-line leaders in the insurance, investment, and financial services industry.