Women in Financial Services (WIFS), a national professional association representing women in the insurance and financial services industry, accorded Emily Viner of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, its top award as “Woman of the Year” at the association’s recent national conference. Viner was chosen from among 12 women nominated by their peers for this prestigious industry award.

“Emily has provided outstanding leadership in supporting the advancement of women in insurance and financial services throughout her long and successful career,” said Sabine Robinson, president of WIFS. “In the innovative programs she has developed at Guardian as well as her broad support for women in the industry, Emily is inspiring the next generation of young women pursuing careers in insurance and financial services.”

As Vice President of Agency Management Development, Viner is responsible for the growth, development and retention of Guardian’s financial representatives, which has grown from 2,100 to 3,100 agents during her tenure. She also helped create the company’s nationally recognized “Girls Going Places” program, which provides entrepreneurship scholarships and mentoring opportunities for teen girls.

“My passion is creating the culture and environment for female agents to succeed,” Viner said. In addition to Girls Going Places, she established Guardian’s Women’s Leadership Summit, an annual conference for the firm’s female sales agents that precedes the WIFS national conference.

A frequent speaker at industry events, Viner has also published numerous articles in insurance industry publications on the topics of recruiting and training tomorrow’s leaders. A resident of Stratford, Connecticut, Viner earned a bachelor’s degree from Western Connecticut State University.