Dwight Hall, or “D” as his friends call him, wakes up, drinks some milk and Chocolate Carnation Instant Breakfast, and begins a workout routine that consists of some combination of push-ups, sit-ups, crunches, stretches, squats, weights, and he throws in a 3-mile run every 3 – 4 days at the end of the workday if at all possible. It’s clear to anyone who sees him running around his neighborhood and around town he’s never stopped running.
The consummate active denizen, Hall is the Indy Chamber’s longest-serving volunteer and past-president of their all-volunteer “Indy Chamber Ambassadors” program. He faithfully stays connected to Broad Ripple-based New Paradigm Christian Church and, of course, the National Association of Health Underwriters. All three have helped him for decades in his personal and professional life.
In July 1972, a young Hall walked into his first insurance job as a medical underwriter at Underwriters National Assurance Corporation. Located at 36th and Meridian Streets in Indianapolis, UNAC would close Hall’s department two years later and close its doors entirely by 1976 in a wild tale involving takeover from the Insurance Commissioner, bankruptcy, and a judge who would himself go to jail for fraud.
With his two years of experience, and a brief stint at Baldwin Lyons, Hall would move to Blue Cross and Blue Shield before it became The Associated Group, Acordia Companies and lastly Anthem. He managed various departments there and ultimately wound up in sales working with brokers across Indiana. In all, his varied career covered a sixteen-year span. “But it just seemed to make sense to me personally to belong,” he recalls, adding, “There is no better organization for anybody in the health insurance industry. If you were a doctor, you’d belong to the professional medical associations. NAHU is the professional association for our industry.”
Another career shift saw Hall moving into a thirteen-year stint at Sagamore Health Network before Hall struck out on his own around 2007 as a consultant. All the while maintaining a growing list of contacts and friends through Health Underwriters. Records are somewhat loose from the early days, but Hall has been with NAHU for about thirty years.
In those three decades, Hall has seen himself become an advisor, membership chair, legislative chair, president-elect, president, and past-president of IndyAHU. He currently serves as IndyAHU’s PAC Chair. Within ISAHU, he’s been membership chair, president-elect and president twice, an advisor, and is now the legislative chair.
“I’m still amazed at people that don’t belong to the one professional association that continues to create the framework for the health insurance industry to exist. The general education, policy and legislation, and opportunities you can access is a necessity,” he says. Still, Hall worries about the future of an industry and Association where young people aren’t joining as quickly as they used to. “I think there are too many people that for whatever reasons don’t understand the importance of being involved in the Association,” he says.
Perhaps no better example of Health Underwriter’s impact on Hall’s life comes from how it intertwines with his church’s mission supporting children and families in Barranquilla, Columbia. The city of 1.2 million on Columbia’s northern Caribbean coast is best known for its massive annual street festival. “We, along with several other groups, support about six churches down there spiritually and financially in some way,” says Hall.
The team travels to Barranquilla annually in the spring to do construction projects like fixing roofs and bathrooms in the impoverished homes of residents. The group also supports Columbian youth through scholarships. “We’ve been hugely successful in scholarships. We’ve helped students become teachers, lawyers, a dentist, accountants, sports management, and more. We’re a small part, but we help them so they can help their families. It supports the whole area,” he says.
“One of the things I do comes directly from contributions made by people I’ve met through NAHU and at trade shows and conferences. I take donations of pens, notepads, toothbrushes, toothpaste, etc. and even AFLAC duck toys, down there each year,” Hall says through a big smile. “I have access to that through my work with NAHU, and all the carriers are very kind in donating materials to take each year,” he says.
Forever humble, Hall says he’s most impressed by the professionalism of NAHU’s staff and “The countless volunteers in the seven local chapters here in Indiana. I’m very thankful for all those that serve on boards and committees spending great amounts of their own time, effort, and resources because they realize the importance of this organization to clients and members,” he says.
This past May, Hall ran in his 37th Mini-Marathon in Indianapolis. “I’m a full hour slower than when I started all those years ago,” he says with a chuckle, but no one can believe Hall is slowing down. “I’ll keep going until I can’t anymore. I’ll keep helping friends and families with insurance policies and the occasional referral. So long as I think I’m still contributing I’ll continue doing those things,” he says.
“Gradually, I’d like to travel around the country. There are sections I’ve never had the opportunity to travel through,” he says, realizing he can never bring himself to stop running completely. Thanks to Health Underwriters, he notes, “I’ve got friends all over the country I can visit to take advantage of that.”