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  • Regulatory Advocacy Award

    July 13, 2011 by Michael K. Stanley

    By MICHAEL K. STANLEY
    Published 7/11/2011

    National Underwriter Life & Healthwould like to acknowledge
    Nick Gerhart as the winner of the Industry Elite Award for Regulatory Advocacy.

    Gerhart, who is currently working for Sammons Financial
    Group, previously represented American Equity. Nominated by Andrew Unkefer,
    president and CEO of Unkefer & Associates Inc., Nick was instrumental in
    reversing SEC Rule 151A. His dedication and commitment helped save jobs and
    preserve the fixed indexed annuity industry.

    SEC Rule 151A sought to reclassify fixed indexed
    annuities as securities rather than insurance products. Meant to address market
    conduct issues with FIA sales, 151A would have had a severe impact on the fixed
    indexed annuity industry. It would have forced anyone who sold fixed indexed
    annuities to become licensed by the SEC, a process that can be expensive as well
    as time consuming. 151A also had the potential to drive smaller operators out of
    the FIA business altogether.

    Nick and others in the industry decided to mobilize,
    organize and fight the ruling. Iowa and Minnesota, which are home states for
    many fixed indexed annuity carriers, were able to serve as microcosms for the
    rest of the country as to what would happen to the industry if Rule 151 A was
    implemented. As covered by National Underwriter last July 26, Gerhart’s
    work was instrumental in helping to deliver the legal and legislative victories
    that resulted in the SEC’s withdrawal of Rule 151A.

    “Senator Harkin and his staff, as well as Congressman
    Boswell and Senator Grassley and their staffs, were great help. We were very
    fortunate to have, in the state of Iowa, members of Congress on both sides of
    the aisle who understood the issue not just as a legal issue but the
    implications that ruling would have had for jobs in the state of Iowa.”

    Gerhart stressed that this achievement is the result of hard work by many
    different people. “It would be impossible to list everyone in the industry who
    helped, but thanks to all the carriers, IMOs and agents, and to Susan Voss with
    her leadership at the NAIC who was extremely instrumental in working with the
    Iowa delegation.”

    Originally Posted at National Underwriter on July 11, 2011 by Michael K. Stanley.

    Categories: Industry Articles
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