Crop Insurance Today November 2012 - (Page 39)

TODAYcrop insurance Brian J. Laird Brian J. Laird, manager of the California Division of Rain and Hail LLC, passed away in late September after battling ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). Brian was born and raised in the small farming town of Bowles, California, on a 40-acre family vineyard that produced raisins. Brian’s parents still live on the farm and operate the business. He attended Pacific Union Grammar School and graduated from Washington Union High School in 1977. He was senior class president, captain of the football and baseball teams and editor of the high school newspaper. Brian attended the University of CaliforniaBerkeley and graduated in 1981 with a degree in political science. Brian started his career as a loss adjuster with Federal Crop Insurance (now the Risk Management Agency) in the summer of 1981. He managed loss adjusting from 1984 to 1985 in California for AGRO Adjusters Service. He moved to Overland Park, Kansas, for one year in 1986 to work for CHIAA (Crop Hail Insurance Actuarial Association, predecessor to NCIS) with the job duties of analyzing and writing MPCI policies. In February 1987, Brian accepted the Assistant Manager position in Rain and Hail’s California office and later became division manager in 1992. Brian twice served as Chairman of CA/NV NCIS regional/state committee. He was appointed to the Washington State University Extension Service Risk Management Team for western states to Million in 60 days and challenged those who knew him to join them in this worthwhile cause. Brian recognized that the doctors at Community Regional Medical Center were able to provide him with the cutting-edge treatment that he needed and were able to improve his quality of life. He was working to raise money to help bring more needed experts, programs and technology to the Medical Center. Brian and Jill’s goal, along with the Medical Center, is to build a world-class neurology center in Central California with resources that will be viewed around the world as top notch and the place to receive the highest neurological care possible. These words as they appeared in Brian’s obituary describe him best. “Not only did Brian always have an open door, but he unconditionally opened his arms, his ears and his heart to any and all that needed him. He was famously known for working very hard, and playing even harder. In Brian’s style alone, business associates became best friends and success rightly followed. Brian loved the people with whom he worked and was so proud that Rain and Hail was a launching point for the success of so many. Days had hope, laughter conquered silence, and ordinary was just a little shook up if Brian had anything to do with it. He was a man of God, a man of his word, and a man of love. Our Brian taught us you can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.” In Memory In Memory CROP INSURANCE TODAY designate USDA funding for risk management projects. Brian was on the California Grape and Tree Fruit League Insurance Service and Benefit Committee, and also received the Ag Industry Award from this League. Brian and his wife, Jill, have four children: Christopher, Matthew, Abby, and Ellie. Brian described them as athletic and fun loving kids and he led, played with, coached, cheered for and deeply loved all four of them. His favorite thing to do was spend time with the family. Brian and Jill joined with a small group of family members and friends to raise money to benefit the Neuroscience Center at Community Hospital in Fresno, California where he received excellent, cutting-edge care during his battle against ALS. They set a goal to raise $1 39

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Crop Insurance Today November 2012

The Song Remains the Same
2012 Farm Bill Debate -- Crop Insurance Takes Center Stage
Step 7: Developing and Testing Transitional Plans
Vermont Orchard Depends on Crop Insurance
Jim Deal Receives Orville L. Freeman Award
Charles "Chuck" Lee Joins NCIS
Drought & Adjuster Education is Video Shoot Focus
1890 Scholarship Recipients
In Memory of Brian J. Laird

Crop Insurance Today November 2012