It all started when Shirley graduated from business college and took an underwriting position at the Economical in 1965. A dozen years later, after being out of the workforce for a short period of time to raise her children, she started working at Lackner McLennan Insurance in 1978. At Lackner McLennan, she trained producers and was involved with consulting to other brokerages until 1991, when Shirley relocated to the General Toronto Area. Here she took a position as Manager of Customer Service at The Insurers (the precursor of IFG and subsequently Benson-Kearley). In 1995, Shirley left the Insurers to work with Insurance Network Solutions (INS) – the beginnings of what is now HUB International. At INS, she was introduced to Mike George, who at the time was the Toronto Branch Manager of London Guarantee Insurance Company. Then, in early 1998, Shirley joined London Guarantee, working closely with Mike overseeing marketing and broker relations on a National basis. Shirley lived through the sale of London Guarantee to St. Paul and ultimate merger with Travelers. In 2011, she ‘retired’ from Travelers and joined Trisura on a part-time consulting basis in marketing and broker relations.
On May 13th, 2015, friends, colleagues, and family gathered in the board room at Trisura’s head office in Toronto for wine, cheese, and speeches. President & CEO Mike George beamed with admiration for all the good work Shirley has done for the company, and for the unrivalled support she’s provided him over the two-decades they’ve known each other. Shirley’s son and former co-worker at Trisura, Rob Litt, reiterated some of Mike’s sentiments and also added emphasis on his mom’s ability to excel in all her relationships, both professional and personal. The woman-of-honour then took the stand, inspiring the room with encouragement to self-analyse; to always focus on what motivates you, and to embody Trisura’s vision of a ‘step above’ every single day. The celebration then moved to Terroni on Adelaide Street in down-town Toronto, where the great food, drink, and conversation continued until the evening expired.
Shirley has been a role model and mentor to many in the insurance business, always abiding by the mantra that people are important, and that lasting relationships are of greater value than achieving personal advancement. Shirley already has plans to keep herself busy through volunteer work at a summer camp. She’s also promised to drop in from time to time, to make sure everyone has memorized the company’s strategic vision! We extend our sincerest thanks to Shirley for all she has contributed to Trisura, as well as a big congratulations for reaching the conclusion of a long and successful career.