Fort Dodge Region Top 10 Under 40
What sparked your interest in your career path?
My father, Ed Smith, started his own agency in 1990 here in Fort Dodge. Prior to graduating college I had not put much thought into joining. Over a Holiday break he offered me a job. The idea of building something together with my Dad was a compelling offer.
What’s the best part of your work?
The people I get to work with, both colleagues and clients. It’s a diverse group of people from all walks of life and business. It makes for interesting situations, conversations and opportunities.
Life is full of deﬁning moments that helped shape who you are today. What’s your deﬁning moment?
First, having a family. Being responsible for the well being of other people opens your eyes and can serve as a signiﬁcant motivator. Second, getting involved with the Institute of Work Comp Professionals. The team there, along with the other insurance professionals that I have had the chance to meet and learn from have been critical to my growth in the profession and the success of our organization.
What’s the best advice you ever received?
Surround yourself with talented people and trust in their ability to do the job.
What community project that you were involved in are you most proud of and why?
I’ve had the pleasure of raising funds through connections in our business for Athletics for Education and Success as well as coaching some youth teams there. Sports were a big part of my life growing up and I think what Charles Clayton and the staff at AFES does for the youth of our community is critical.
What’s the best part of living in the Fort Dodge area?
Being close to family and friends. It’s nice knowing who your kids go to school with and seeing a lot of the same faces you’ve known since growing up as a kid in this community.
What’s your advice to other young professionals?
Stick with it. It takes time to establish credibility in anything you do, don’t give up before you’ve given yourself a real opportunity to do that.
What would you like to share about your family and/or hobbies?
I am married to Jessica and we have two children, Samantha who is 10 and Spencer who is 8. My daughter loves to dance and my son plays sports. Luckily he’s a Hawkeye, Bears and Royals fan like me.
Fort Dodge, IA 50501