Randy A. Ramlo was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of United Fire Group in May 2007. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer (May 2006 – May 2007), Executive Vice President (May 2004 – May 2007), and Vice President, Fidelity and Surety (November 2001 – May 2004). He also worked as an underwriting manager in our Great Lakes region. Mr. Ramlo has been employed by us since 1984.
Michael T. Wilkins became United Fire Group’s Chief Operating Officer in May 2014 previously serving as Executive Vice President, Corporate Administration since May 2007. He served as our Senior Vice President, Corporate Administration (May 2004 – May 2007), Vice President, Corporate Administration (August 2002 – May 2004), and Vice President in our Lincoln, Nebraska regional office (1998 – August 2002). Prior to 1998, Mr. Wilkins held various other positions within United Fire Group since joining us in 1985.
Dawn M. Jaffray was appointed Chief Financial Officer of United Fire Group on May 20, 2015 and reports directly to Randy A. Ramlo, President and Chief Executive Officer. Ms. Jaffray is a graduate of the University of Windsor School of Business (Finance/Accounting 1988) and is a CPA,CGA (chartered professional accountant, certified general accountant). Additionally, she is a certified investor relations officer (University of California - Irvine). Ms. Jaffray was most recently chief financial officer of Soleil Advisory Group, specializing in operational consulting, merger and acquisition, investments and strategy (2009-2015). Prior to her service with Soleil Advisory Group, Ms. Jaffray held numerous positions in insurance operations and mergers / acquisition activities, primarily in the role of principal financial officer. Ms. Jaffray's business experience has been focused in particular on insurance, finance and capital management.
David E. Conner is United Fire Group’s Vice President and Chief Claims Officer, a position he has held since January 2005. Mr. Conner has served in various capacities within our claims department, including Claims Manager and Assistant Vice President, since joining us in 1998. Prior to joining United Fire Group, Mr. Conner worked in the claims departments of Continental Western Insurance Company, Hanover Insurance Company and GAB Business Services, Inc.
Barrie W. Ernst is Vice President and Chief Investment Officer of United Fire Group. He joined us in August 2002. Previously, Mr. Ernst served as Senior Vice President of SCI Financial Group, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where he worked from 1980 to 2002. SCI Financial Group was a regional financial services firm providing brokerage, insurance and related services to its clients.
Neal R. Scharmer was appointed United Fire Group’s Vice President and General Counsel in May 2001 and its Corporate Secretary in May 2006. Prior to joining us in 1995, Mr. Scharmer worked as Senior Counsel for Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company.
Michael J. Sheeley is Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of United Fire Group’s life insurance subsidiary, United Life Insurance Company, a position he has held since March 2011. Since joining United Fire Group in 1985 as an Underwriter, Mr. Sheeley has served us in various capacities including Personal Lines Underwriting Manager (1993-2004) and Assistant Vice President (2004-2011).
Brian S. Berta is Vice President of United Fire Group’s Great Lakes Regional Office, a position he has held since May 2006. Mr. Berta previously served as underwriting manager in our Great Lakes Region and began his employment with us in 1993.
Raymond E. Dudonis was appointed Branch Manager of United Fire Group’s East Coast Regional Office in July 2011 and was named a Vice President in August 2011. Mr. Dudonis joined United Fire Group in March 2011 as part of the acquisition of Mercer Insurance Group where he served as Underwriting Vice President since 2006. Mr. Dudonis has over 30 years of insurance industry experience having worked in various underwriting capacities for Munich Re America/Munich American Risk (1997-2006), Post Financial Services, LLC (1994-1997) and Continental Insurance Company (1977-1994).
David L. Hellen serves as Vice President of United Fire Group’s Denver Regional Office; a position he has held since 1988. Mr. Hellen has served us in various capacities since joining United Fire Group in 1975.
Joseph B. Johnson was named Vice President of United Fire Group’s Gulf Coast Regional Office in May 2007, after having served as branch manager since August 2006. Mr. Johnson has over 25 years of experience in the insurance industry. From August 2001 until August 2006, he served as Vice President of Insurance Operations for Beacon Insurance Group in Wichita Falls, Texas.
Scott A. Minkel is Vice President, Information Services for United Fire Group, a position he has held since May 2007. Mr. Minkel previously served in various capacities within the information services department, including as Assistant Vice President, Director of Information Services and Programming Manager, since joining United Fire Group in 1984.
Dennis J. Richmann was named United Fire Group’s Vice President, Fidelity and Surety, in May 2006. He has been employed by us in various capacities, most recently as Surety Bond Underwriting Manager, since joining United Fire Group in August 1988.
Corey J. Ruehle is Vice President and Branch Manager of United Fire Group’s Midwest Regional Office, a position he has held since June 2012. Mr. Ruehle has served us in various underwriting capacities, including Underwriting Manager, Underwriting Supervisor, Senior Commercial Lines Underwriter and Commercial Lines Underwriter since joining us in February 2001. From 1996 until 2001, Mr. Ruehle working in various underwriting positions for Allied Insurance.
Allen R. Sorensen became Vice President, Corporate Underwriting of United Fire Group in May 2006. Mr. Sorensen began his career with United Fire Group in June 1981 and has served us in various capacities including underwriting, product support and product automation.
Colleen R. Sova joined the company in 1980 as a general clerk. Ms. Sova served as Director of Claims Administration until she was promoted to Director of e-Business in 2000. She was named Vice President and Director of e-Solutions in May 2007. In July of 2013, she assumed her current role as Vice President and Director of Corporate Marketing.
Timothy G. Spain became United Fire Group’s Vice President, Human Resources, in July 2006. Mr. Spain began his career with United Fire Group in December 1994 as Training Director.
Edward E. Sullivan joined United Fire Group as Vice President of its West Coast Regional Office in February 2012. Prior to joining United Fire Group, Mr. Sullivan held numerous positions within the insurance industry including most recently Personal Lines Sales Manager, the Hartford (2009-2012), Sales Manager, Allstate Insurance (1999-2009), Vice President Marketing and Agency President, Allied Insurance (1993-1999).
Kevin W. Helbing joined United Fire Group as Controller in February 2008. Mr. Helbing was previously employed by Marsh U.S.A. in Iowa City, Iowa, as Vice President, Treasury from April 2007 until February 2008. From March 2001 until April 2007, Mr. Helbing was employed by Marsh Advantage America, first as an accounting manager and then as Assistant Vice President and Controller. Marsh U.S.A. and Marsh Advantage America design, manage and administer insurance and risk programs for businesses.
David A. Lange has served as one of United Fire Group’s Corporate Secretaries since 1997. He has been our Surety Claims Manager since 1987. Mr. Lange began his career with United Fire Group in 1981 in our property and casualty claims department, with an interruption in service between 1984 and 1987.
Janice A. Martin was named Treasurer of United Fire Group in May 2008. Ms. Martin has served in various capacities since joining us in 1988 including as Tax Accountant and as Tax Manager since January 2006.
Ms. Kaster joined the company in 2006 as a Project Manager. In Spring 2014, she was named Vice President and Program Manager. Ms. Kaster became Director of the Project Management Office in September 2013.
Victoria (Torie) L. Hefel is Vice President and Personal Lines Regional Manager of United Fire Group. Ms. Hefel joined our company in 2008 as a Personal Lines Underwriter. She was promoted to Personal Lines regional manager in July 2011. She has over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry, which includes experience working in insurance agencies.
Robert (Bob) L. Rey is the Branch Manager of the E&S Division at United Fire Group. Mr. Rey joined the company in 2014. He has over 35 years of experience in the insurance industry, having worked in various underwriting capacities, including senior executive positions as Regional Vice President at Reliance/Reliance National Insurance, as well as Crum & Forster. Prior to coming to United Fire Group, Mr. Rey was Assistant Vice President and Director of Commercial Lines for Topa Insurance Company.