Employee Benefits




Quality health and financial benefits packages not only make employees happy, they make companies more competitive and efficient. Professionals in this category broker these high-quality benefits and balance the needs of employers and employees alike. Not only do these POWER PLAYERS have a expert understanding of financial advising, they know what benefits and amenities are most important to employees, including healthcare plans, pension plans, and, in some cases, even childcare, transportation, and cafeteria plans. Being the middleman isn’t always easy, but these professionals know how to meet everyone’s needs at once — and keep companies running smoothly.

TODD DYSON
Vice President, Clay & Land Insurance, Inc. Has been with company 22 years. Specializes in Employee Benefits consulting and administration. Partner in independent insurance brokerage agency. Served on Broker Advisory Committees and a multi-year Leaders Club qualifier. Member, National Association of Health Underwriters, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, Professional Insurance Agents of Tennessee, and Colonial Country Club.

DALE ERNST
Large Group Benefits Consultant, First Horizon Insurance Group. Bachelor’s degree, University of Northern Iowa. Has 37 years of experience. LUTCF, RHU, REBC, and CLU designations, American College. Created Old Northwest Company in 1981 and sold to the Principal Financial Group in 1998. Former Director of Sales, Principal Financial Group. Former Church Council President, St. Luke Lutheran Church in Cordova; Volunteer, Habitat for Humanity, St. Luke Lutheran Church, and Memphis Interfaith Hospitality Network.

KELLY O. FINNELL
President, Executive Financial Services, Inc. B.A., University of Memphis; J.D., University of Memphis, 1981. Has been with company 30 years. Author, The ESOP Coach: Using ESOPs in Ownership Succession Planning. CLU and AIF designations. Member, Advisory Board, Renasant Bank. Former Board Member, Economic Club of Memphis. Former Vestry Member and Treasurer, Holy Communion Church. Former President of the Board, Family Services of Memphis.

MARK FORRESTER
President and CEO, Regions Insurance of Tennessee. B.B.A., Insurance and Risk Management, University of Memphis. Responsible for managing and growing company’s Memphis operations. Also serves as Senior Vice President of Regions Insurance Group, assisting in strategic retail and wholesale insurance carrier relations. Former President, Insurors of Memphis and Greater Memphis Insurance Council. Former State Director, Insurors of Tennessee. Member, Economic Club of Memphis.

KEITH A. JAMES
President and Chief Manager, The James Group, LLC. B.A., University of North Carolina; M.B.A., East Carolina University. Co-founded company in 2003. Named to National Association of Health Underwriters Leading Producers Round Table. Fellow, American College of Healthcare Executives. President-elect, Mid-South Association of Health Underwriters. Member, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Broker Advisory Council, American College of Healthcare Executives, and Tennessee Long Term Care Partnership Training.

PHILIP JOHNSON
Founding Partner, Argyle Benefits Consultants, LLC. B.B.A., Baylor University. Has been with company 18 years. Health Care Reform specialist with speaking engagements to variety of groups, including civic clubs, HR professionals, and attorneys. Certified Employee Benefits Specialist; serves on various Insurance Company Advisory Boards. Member, National Association of Health Underwriters; United Benefit Advisors. Member, Technical Advisory Group (TAG) for Tennessee Insurance Exchange development.

JAMES “JAY” F. KEEGAN JR.
President, CEO, and Director, Adams Keegan. Former COO, CFO, and Vice President of Sales. Founded Staff Line, LLC; co-founded The James Group, LLC. President’s Club Award, AutoZone. Appointed to Employee Leasing Advisory Board. Member, Young Presidents’ Organization. Supports Leadership Memphis, The Leadership Academy. Past Chairman of the Board of Directors, Emerge Memphis. Member, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s Memphis Club; development board, Church Health Center.

DAVID KLEVAN
Principal, Corporate Benefits Management Group. CBMG represents more than 30 insurance carriers. Former corporate officer, Aflac. Member, Board of Directors, the Pink Ribbon Open golf tournament. Board Member, Germantown Area Chamber of Commerce. Received Sam Walton Small Business Award in 1999 and Home Town Hero award from the City of Germantown in 2000. Compnay named “Small Business of the Year” by the Germantown Area Chamber of Commerce in 2008.

JIM E. MEEKS JR.
Managing Partner of Memphis Region, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network. Meeks Financial Group has four district network offices in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Mississippi. Firm specializes in investment strategies and products, employee and executive benefit programs, education funding, estate analysis, and retirement analysis. Firm established first Memphis office in 1965. Qualified for Million Dollar Round Table multiple times.

KENNETH DAVID PAYLOR
CEO and President, USI of Tennessee, Inc. M.B.A., University of Memphis, with concentration in management. Accountable for executive management and handling large risk management programs. Company has 80 offices in 22 states. Certified Insurance Counselor and Associate in Risk Management. Received Certificate of Achievement for Advanced Consultancy Practice I. Member, Board of Governors, Crescent Club. Board Member, Sister Ruth Ann Center.

JIM SHOEMAKER
President, Shoemaker Financial. Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Life Underwriter, Chartered Financial Consultant, and Certified Fund Specialist. Registered Representative of Securian Financial Services. Member and former Chairman, Kingdom Advisors. Member, National Association of Family Wealth Counselors, Estate Planning Council, Institute of Certified Financial Planners, and Society of Financial Service Professionals. Board Member, Premier Resource Group. Named Volunteer of the Year by GAMA International.

CHARLES SIMS JR.
President and CEO, the Sims Financial Group. Certified Financial Planner. Fellow of Life Underwriter Training Council and Certified Mutual Funds Manager. Member, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. Life and Qualifying Member, Million Dollar Round Table. First African-American member of John Hancock’s Hall of Fame. Life and Founding Member, Crescent Club of Memphis. Board Member, First American Bank and WKNO.

STUART ZALOWITZ
Managing Partner, Zalowitz Frisch Benefits Group, LLC. B.S., University of Oklahoma. Has been in Employee Benefits and Financial Services for 37 years. Company offers independent evaluation of group insurance and retirement plans offered by business owners to their employees. Estate Planner, National Association of Health Underwriters Golden Eagle Award Winner. Member, National Association of Estate Planners. Certified Long-Term Care Specialist.

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