To The Editor:
While we commend the election of Adelia Chung as the new president of the Million Dollar Round Table, we are a little surprised by the tone of your column, “The Editors Edge” in the June 28 edition of National Underwriter. I refer specifically to the statement, “It is little short of scandalous that we should have had to wait until the 21st century for a woman to head one of the industrys major organizations.”
As president of the Society of Financial Service Professionals, it is my pride as well as my duty to correct your misconception. In 1960, long before the term “glass ceiling” came into vogue, the Society elected its first woman president, Lillian G. Hogue, CLU. Lillian served the Society proudly and well, paving the way for three more female presidents of our organization: Maxine B. Niemeyer, CLU, ChFC in 1988; Beverly L. Brooks, CLU, AEP in 1998; and Ann W. Hartmann, CLU, ChFC, AEP in 2001. All four presidencies were marked by significant advances for the Society, and our organization was the grateful beneficiary of their careful guidance and their capable, enthusiastic leadership.
This information was somehow omitted from your column, despite its being available to you via a phone call to our national staff in Bryn Mawr, Pa. Certainly, it is not because the Society is not among “the industrys major organizations.” As a 76-year-old institution, with more than 22,000 members in nearly 200 chapters across the United States, we will stand with the “majors” however they are defined.
In a laudable effort to celebrate Ms. Chung, National Underwriter unfortunately also did her, MDRT and others in this wonderful industry a disservice by not recognizing other great women. We would appreciate a public acknowledgement of the Societys women leaders as well as those of other industry organizations.
Adelia Chung is most worthy of congratulations, and I heartily offer ours on behalf of the entire Society of Financial Service Professionals. We wish her, and MDRT, a year rich with growth and achievement. Many Society members are also members of MDRT, and we value the relationship our two organizations enjoy.
Richard A. Bell, CLU, ChFC, CFP
President, Society of Financial Service Professionals
To The Editor:
I commend the National Underwriter on its “Editors Edge” article dealing with Ms. Adelia Chung and her hard-earned position within MDRT leadership, which is certainly well-deserved. Undoubtedly women still are working their way up the corporate ladder, particularly in the financial services industry. Efforts from Ms. Chung and other women leaders who came before only bode well for our overall future.