History of PIA of VA & DC

PIA of VA & DC is a nonprofit trade association that's more than 85 years old.

Organized in 1936, the association has a long heritage of service to independent agents throughout the Commonwealth and in the District of Columbia.

Publication of PIA of VA & DC's history in 2006 fulfilled action taken by the association's board of directors on November 16, 1953. At the meeting, Immediate Past president Robert Putnam moved “to organize and arrange the printing and establishment of a brochure giving the history and achievements of the association”. The motion was approved unanimously after being seconded by D. B. Robertson (who was elected president in 1955). There is no evidence that the history was ever written. There is no reference in any minutes about a history until the June 24, 2004, board of directors meeting which approved writing of the PIA of VA & DC history.

One of the first questions a reader might ask is “Why call this history of PIA of VA & DC ‘70 Years’ when the organization is not that old?” The answer is simple: although this association was not officially organized until October 26, 1936, our members were instrumental in the formation of the National Association of Mutual Insurance Agents in 1931(now PIA National).

The North Carolina association which was established on November 11, 1935, nearly a year older than PIA of VA & DC, is the only affiliate established before PIA of VA & DC. In 1986, when PIA of VA & DC celebrated its 50 years of service, the national association presented a resolution, which included these statements

“…the Virginia-DC Association was born out of the adversity that made mutual insurance an unpopular commodity in those days. Some critics were promoting the idea that it was un-American to buy insurance from a company whose ownership was vested in its policyholders….”

There remains significant adversity today, as well as growing service opportunities, for PIA of VA & DC as it reaches out to new young agents throughout the region and grows low-cost services to meet changing member demands. PIA of VA & DC's competitive advantage remains the same as it was in 1936 - an open family culture that sets the association apart from all others.

PIA of VA & DC's official compete unabridged history was published in May 2006 and is available in paperback form.

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