By Christy Howard Womack
Andy Womack is delighted that his daughter Dana is Murfreesboro’s newest State Farm agent. She grew up as part of the “State Farm family” and has immersed herself within all aspects of the company including traveling across the Southeast to work with different agents where it became clear to her that the common theme was the integrity of the individual agents as well as within the corporate culture.
Andy’s career with State Farm began way back in 1968. He had just returned from Vietnam and was back in school at MTSU and needed a job. State Farm was hiring college students and Andy’s future career was born. As he approached graduation, State Farm asked him to enter their management program and for several years he worked within that program alongside his good friend Bob Parks. When Bob Parks left to enter the world of real estate sales, he encouraged Andy to consider the sales end of the insurance business. Andy became an agent with New York Life for nine years.
In 1981, Andy was approached by State Farm again and he recognized the opportunity that came with the regional office being located in Murfreesboro. For 36 years now, he has been one of the top performing insurance agents in Murfreesboro for State Farm, and he still enjoys every part of his job. “I like the idea of the personal lines of business that are State Farm’s emphasis,” said Andy. “You can provide comprehensive insurance (auto, fire, financial services, etc.) to serve individuals and families in our community.”
Andy has always been a man of service. Besides serving in the State Senate for three terms where he was Chairman of the Senate Education Committee and the Joint Legislative Committee on Veteran Affairs, Andy has always been extremely active in the local community in nonprofit associations. He is extremely dedicated to the United Way and is currently the Chairman Elect for the United Way Volunteers. He coached Little League baseball for 25 years and has been President of the Blue Raiders Athletic Association and MTSU Foundation.
Dana grew up with that legacy of service to her community as a fundamental part of her life. “Growing up, we traveled a lot with State Farm. My State Farm family was located all across the Southeast as well as in Murfreesboro. Some of them we only saw 3-4 times a year, but we all became close.”
Much like her father, Dana started her professional career with State Farm as a summer intern in 1998 while she was still in college at MTSU. She graduated with her BS in 2000 and then received her Master’s Degree in Business Education in 2003. After she finished her student teaching, she returned to State Farm to work as an Auto Claim Representative in the regional office. She was soon promoted to a Supervisor in the corporate office in Bloomington, Illinois, where she spent three years.
Her career with State Farm continued as she moved into the field as an Agency Field Specialist in Lafayette, Georgia, traveling all across the Southeast to work with 54 agents as their “corporate connection.” Eventually State Farm moved her back to Murfreesboro where she continued to work with established agents in the Nashville area – training, implementing new processes, and guiding different agents through best practices to improve their service to customers. For the last four years, she was specifically assigned to work with brand new agents to assist them in setting up their agencies.
Working with different agents has given Dana a distinct advantage. “I got to see what works and what doesn’t, how rural markets are different from metropolitan markets, how to develop a team and motivate them. But most of all, in working with over 200 agents, I noticed the business integrity that is rampant within State Farm. Across the Southeast, the common denominator is that the agents are passionate in their willingness and desire to help people. They are pillars of their communities, and they actively care about their customers. I saw those attributes reflected in my father, and I want to be a leader within my community and to operate with that same integrity. It’s important to me to be with a company that embodies that.”
Spending so much time both on the operations side of State Farm as well as the agency side has given Dana a unique perspective. “I get the bigger picture. I appreciate that State Farm always has the triangle of State Farm in mind – they make decisions with the customer, the agent and State Farm in mind. I understand that the service provided by our corporate office reflects on our agents, as well as how the agents are the ‘face’ of State Farm to our customers. State Farm has our back 100%. I have full confidence in them and that’s a good feeling. I know that State Farm is working hard to pay all claims on a timely basis and when I sell a policy, I know that I can trust that when they need the insurance, the claims will be paid.
“We know that people want to leave a legacy, they want to protect their assets, and that you get what you pay for,” explains Dana. “We try on the front end to help people understand what they truly need to protect their assets. State minimums aren’t going to be enough if you rear end a car with a backup camera, or if you are driving a car with four people in it who are injured. We take the time to educate our customers on coverage so they can make the best decisions about their needs. We’ve seen how catastrophic events like tornados and hail storms have impacted people, but most people don’t think on that level.”
“Not all insurance companies are equal. Not all insurance companies pay for replacement costs on your roof, or consolidate events into one deductible. There is a reason that State Farm is number one in home insurance. Our policy holders are protected.”
Clearly, Dana is passionate about State Farm and she is excited about having her own agency here in Murfreesboro. “I strive to help my customers every day. Last night when the storm hit, we stayed late and were taking calls from customers and helping them through the decisions about filing claims, getting estimates, considering deductibles. I’m so grateful to have such a great support network. My husband, Paul Fiveash, is completely supportive and the great team we have assembled in my staff – Tanya Todd, Ryan Thomas, Allison Deskins, Colton Anderson and Barbara Garcia – are all committed to providing excellent support for our clients.