Allie Gorgol has accomplished a lot in two years. She got married, moved to a new house, and moved to a new and better job. The lengthiest project among all those, however, is serving two years as IndyAHU’s President. Typically served as a 1-year term, Gorgol stayed for a second year when no one else stepped up. Now she’s leaving the Association in better shape than she found it.
“It’s refreshing to see the dedication of the people in this industry,” she says. “Especially with a millennial age group, you don’t see a lot of loyalty with organizations from our cohort. But we’ve been able to fill out our board, and we have tons of new members.”
Membership is a pulpy subject for any membership association. When it’s growing, everyone fears it might stop. When it’s not growing, everyone fears it won’t stop.
“IndyAHU is the largest chapter in the state and among the largest in the region. The region is relying on our membership for funding. It’s always been hard when we see decreases in membership, and it’s awesome when we see an increase. We’ve vacillated back and forth. We’re seeing positive signs this year,” says Gorgol.
She credits new Happy Hour events around Indianapolis that happen after work, not before as a growth and sponsorship asset. New monthly meetup formats that feature interesting and in-demand talent, like political and economic leaders, combined with CE instructors, have boosted attendance, too.
With the average age of an insurance professional in the US at 55, the gulf between novice and senior is enormous. For many leaders, that’s a problem. Gorgol saw it as a huge opportunity.
“I don’t think people realize the resources available to them in other members. This Association is top-heavy with older professionals that have been in the industry 20 or 30 years or more. Think about some of these people — look at Dwight Hall and David Berman. They know everybody,” says Gorgol. “Networking with these guys gets you contacts you need to be successful in this industry.”
Gorgol herself is a testament to that. Having moved from IU Health Plans to Centene in the last year, she knows her leadership position and involvement with Health Underwriters helped clinch the move.
“This has been a huge resume-builder for me, sure. It adds to the leadership qualities I can put on my resume. It definitely helped secure my position in my new job,” she says. Without much hesitation, she adds, “If I lost my job today, I could have a new one in a couple of weeks thanks to the people I’ve met and know in Health Underwriters.”
Gorgol’s tenure as President ends July 1 when she moves into the role of Immediate Past President. She intends to see through one of the last significant initiatives: bringing back major annual events.
“I’m going to see this Medicare Carrier rollout event happen next year,” she says. Originally planned for this August, the event was pushed because of COVID-19. “Medicare is the next biggest segment of the market. We have four major carriers on board for this event, in all in a room on the same day. That’s a broker’s dream.”
“How convenient is that? Without taking several days to travel around to all these carriers, often at competing times, we can bring all these people together in one space at the same time to learn about new products and vendors,” Gorgol says with palpable excitement and pride. “Medicare is the future, and we’re going to be experts in that market and help even more of our membership.”
Among all the exciting things moving in the right direction, Gorgol is proudest of having a fully-staffed board. “We always need new ideas and opinions. I’m excited about this coming year now that we have more interest and more people. In the future, we’ll be at a huge win.”
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