Friday morning at the NAILBA 32 conference at the Gaylord Texan in Dallas was highlighted by presentations on the numerous charitable donations made by NAILBA and its members.
NAILBA Charitable Foundation president, John Rippinger, encouraged attendees to bid in organization auctions, which feature everything from duck hunting trips, to flight experiences, to autographed sports memorabilia.
In addition, he encouraged the brokerages and their partners to donate to the Charitable Foundation, which helps members actively support charities in their local community.
A series of companies then presented checks to the Foundation, including a $20,000 donation from Genworth, $21,200 from The Marketing Alliance, $25,000 from Prudential, and $25,450 from LifeMark Partners.
David Long, NAILBA’s 2013 Secretary/Treasurer then presented this year’s Foundation grants, sponsored by NAILBA members across the country. The foundation received more than 40 applications this year, and awarded a total of $225,000 to 13 applicants, including:
- Brain Tumor Foundation for Children Inc., Atlanta, Ga. — $20,000
- Children’s Oncology Services Inc., Chicago, Ill. — $20,000
- The Dream Connection, Knoxville, Tenn. — $20,000
- Mama’s Kitchen, San Diego, Calif. — $20,000
The 2013 Felton Grant for $25,000 went to Promises2Kids, a San Diego-based organization that helps foster children reconnect with estranged siblings at camps across the country.
Marvin Feldman, CEO of the Life Foundation then awarded a check for $15,000 to Shane LaBarge, this year’s Life Lessons Scholarship program Grand Prize Essay Recipient.
Shane’s father, Roger, passed away from undiagnosed heart disease shortly after Shane enrolled in college. Because he had no life insurance, the family was severely affected by the sudden loss of wages. They fell behind on their bills and Shane’s college education became uncertain.
In a video presentation, Shane’s mother, Janet, said, “Don’t put life insurance off. I never thought I’d be in this position. Life insurance is everything. [An unexpected death] could happen in a minute and your life will change forever. It will never be the same.”
After receiving a check from the foundation, Shane thanked the audience, saying, the grant helped him “realize there are people who, instead of giving way to cynicism, have tried to make a difference. Let me tell you, it makes a tremendous difference.”
He said he has been inspired to renew his diligence so that he, too, can one day make a difference. Receiving the aid has given him the ambition to one day pay it forward to another student in his position, he said.
“Your support brought me here,” Labarge said in closing. “I’m grateful for the work you all do every single day. It’s easy to forget in the bustle of life that you are doing good. Let me assure you, you are doing good. The work you do is critical. Agents should share my story and let their prospects and clients know we were just like them. This happens to families like theirs every day. They don’t want their family to live with the consequences of not getting life insurance.”