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D. Scott Brennan receives 2016 JNR Memorial Award

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The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) is proud to announce D. Scott Brennan, a career MassMutual agent in South Bend, Ind., as the recipient of the 75th annual John Newton Russell Memorial Award. The award is the highest honor accorded by the insurance industry to a living individual who has rendered outstanding services to the institution of life insurance.

Mr. Brennan received the award today in a Main Stage presentation at NAIFA’s Performance + Purpose conference in Las Vegas. 

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“On behalf of the selection committee, it is a privilege to congratulate Scott Brennan as the recipient of this year’s John Newton Russell Memorial Award,” said Robert O. Smith, CLU, ChFC, JD, chair of the 2016 award committee. “Scott’s high regard as an industry speaker and his dedicated service to the Million Dollar Round Table demonstrate his strong commitment to our industry and to helping his colleagues achieve success. We had many strong nominees this year, but Scott’s achievements stood out as particularly notable.”

During his senior year at Indiana University in the fall of 1977, Mr. Brennan began his career in life insurance. He is a member of the Million Dollar Round Table Quarter Century Club with past qualifications of Court of the Table and Top of the Table.  He has previously served as the organization’s president. He has also served on more than 30 MDRT committees and task forces and has been a speaker at 12 MDRT annual meetings. He is an Excalibur Knight of the MDRT Foundation.  

“I have had a great career with a few left turns,” Mr. Brennan said. “It hasn’t been perfect but it has been wonderful. I have more medals than scar tissue, but I am proud of both.” 

Mr. Brennan has been a NAIFA member for more than 35 years and is currently on the NAIFA-Indiana board of trustees.  He has served as the president of NAIFA-North Central Indiana association. He has also served on the Life Happens (formerly LIFE Foundation) board of directors and as president of Forum 400. He is a longtime member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting. 

A highly regarded speaker, Mr. Brennan has presented to more than 200 business groups and served as a guest lecturer to MBA programs at the University of Notre Dame and Indiana University-South Bend. He has served on the faculty of the Grant Taggart Symposium and the Banff Institute. 

His many awards and honors include the 1994 South Bend Life Underwriter of the Year award, 1998 NAIFA-Indiana Hoosier Underwriter of the Year award, and the 2002 and 2003 MassMutual Agent of the Year for Indiana. In 2011, Mr. Brennan was the inaugural recipient of The Forum 400’s Humanitarian Award. 

“Scott Brennan has dedicated more than 35 years to helping his clients provide financial security for themselves and their families,” said NAIFA President Jules O. Gaudreau, Jr., ChFC, CIC. “During that time he has also given back to our great industry by volunteering his time, insights and energy. His exemplary passion and dedication make him a worthy recipient of the 2016 John Newton Russell Memorial Award.” 

John Henry Russell created the John Newton Russell Memorial Award in 1942 as a tribute to his father, an influential leader in the life insurance industry and an early advocate of agent education. John Newton Russell served as NAIFA (then NALU) president from 1916 to 1917 and was a contributing founder of LIMRA International, The American College and the Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designation.


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