Crop Insurance Today November 2013 - (Page 32)

CropInsurance TODAY Kent A. Petersen Retires After almost 40 years in the crop insurance industry, Kent A. Petersen retired from Hudson Insurance Group in September 2013. From 1973 to 1990, Kent worked for Crop Hail Management, Inc., starting as a crop insurance adjuster and working up through the ranks to Chief Operations Officer. From 1990 to 1992, Mr. Petersen assisted with the transition as Crop Hail Management merged with Rural Community Insurance Services (RCIS) and in 1992 he was named the Manager of Underwriting and Reinsurance for RCIS. He served in that position until 1997. After a brief "retirement" from the industry, Mr. Petersen returned to the industry as President of CropUSA in January 2003. In 2008, Hudson Insurance Company pur- Continued from page 1 not changed a whole lot, though optimism remains that 2013 will be the year rural America finally gets a new bill. The process that began with farm bill hearings in 2011 and a failed year-end attempt to pass a new farm law through the budget super committee. Then in 2012, more hearings led to a Senate passed Farm Bill that eventually died in the House in favor of a one-year extension of the '08 law. It started all over again in 2013, and this time, the House and Senate each passed a Farm Bill, albeit different versions that must now be ironed out in a Conference Committee. The outcome remains in question, but if a bill finally passes and changes are coming it will be imperative that USDA/RMA work together with the industry to ensure a smooth and successful role out. Throughout the debate in Washington, DC, crop insurance's popularity and importance has never been questioned, though critics continue to single out the anomalous expenditures related to the 2012 drought. NCIS has been vigilant in putting such cherry-picking in perspective with a campaign dedicated to cutting through the spin and presenting "just the facts." "Just letting it roll, letting the high times carry the low...." In the mid to late 2000s, U.S. agriculture generally experienced good weather. As 32 november2013 chased the assets of CropUSA and the employment contracts of many employees. Kent supported that transition and was named Senior Vice President of Hudson Insurance Company and President of Hudson Crop. He remained in that position until his retirement. While with CropUSA, and subsequently Hudson Insurance Company, Mr. Petersen was instrumental in securing this startup company's first Standard Reinsurance Agreement. In less than eight years, under his guidance, Hudson Crop went from writing its first crop insurance policy to supporting over $250 million in premium; witnessed the expansion of the company into 35 states; and, saw employee numbers go from a handful to over a hundred in just a few short years. Mr. Petersen was a member of many industry organizations including National Crop Insurance Services, where he served on the Board of Directors from 1992-1997. He was also an active member of the American Association of Crop Insurers, serving as a strong advocate for the crop insurance industry. should be expected, crop insurance companies earned positive returns. Private crop insurance and reinsurance companies use the years of low losses to build surplus in order to use the accumulated surplus to pay claims in the catastrophic years. This lets the "high times carry the low." In fact, in 2012, crop insurance companies lost money, as well as in 1983, 1984, 1988, 1993 and 2002. Most people outside of agriculture do not realize that, in the context of overall federal spending, monies spent on farm policy are small. In fact, about one-quarter of one percent of the federal budget is spent on farm programs. Also, data recently presented by NCIS shows that, when corrected for inflation in crop prices, total farm safety net expenditures were actually higher in fiscal years '82, '83, '85, '86, '87, '93, '99, '00, '01, '02, '03, '05, '06, and '09 than they were in '13. (Choices Magazine, 3rd Quarter 2013-see the reprinted article beginning on page 25). It is important to recognize that while crop insurance program costs have increased over time as market prices and program participation have risen, government spending on farm safety net programs as a whole has trended down over the past decade. "Don't matter how you do it, just do it like you know it...." USDA Undersecretary Michael Scuse began the year by applauding crop insurers for the way companies, adjusters and agents handled the catastrophic drought of 2012. "To this day, I have yet to have a single producer call me with a complaint about crop insurance," he said during our annual convention in February. We weren't finished. The spring sales activity saw an increase in insured acres from 283 million in 2012 to 294 million acres in 2013. Agents and companies alike were busy helping farmers protect their 2013 crops. It is all made possible by the everyday "... stock and trade..." items that our industry is involved in-NCIS Regional/State Committee meetings and adjuster schools, train-the trainer sessions, standing committee meetings, adjusting losses and paying claims, and training agents and adjusters just to name a FEW. With that the final 2013 installment of TODAY® magazine contains various articles, including the "Ten Considerations Regarding the Role of Crop Insurance in the Agricultural Safety Net," an article by Laurence Crane explaining the producer risk management education sessions held in Arkansas and Mississippi earlier this year, a recap of the NCIS schools and field days, a feature of two farmers from Vermont who rely on crop insurance in their operation, and an introduction to the two new NCIS 1890s scholarship recipients. Adios Buckaroos, see you in 2014...and from the Staff at NCIS have a safe and happy holiday season! And just remember, "...we've been down this road once or twice before...."

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Crop Insurance Today November 2013

Gettin' By on Gettin' Bys...
Helping Farmers and Ranchers: Developing Risk Management Plans
NCIS Adjuster Schools Big Success
1890 Scholarship Recipients
Ten Considerations Regarding the Role of Crop Insurance in the Agricultural Safety Net
Crop Insurance In Action
Kent A. Petersen Retires
In Memory Bill Hanson

Crop Insurance Today November 2013