Ohio insurance company, Westfield, celebrates 175 years

Ohio insurance company, Westfield, celebrates 175 years
MEDINA COUNTY, Ohio — Isaac Jones is a single of the founders of what’s regarded right now as Westfield, an insurance corporation dependent in Medina County.

What You Need To Know

  • This yr, one particular Ohio small business is celebrating its 175th anniversary.
  • Westfield is an coverage business based mostly in Medina County with a lot more than 1,000 appointment agencies throughout the country. 
  • One of the present-day workers is connected to two of the unique founders from the 1800s.

“So, this title appropriate listed here, Isaac Jones, is the name of my fourth wonderful-grandfather,” Jon Walkup said even though pointing at a doc from the 1840s. “Jonathan Simmons, who at the time was president, was basically Isaac Jones’ brother-in-law, which can make him my fourth great uncle.”

Jon Walkup is proud to function exactly where he has deep connections. Just about every day, he carries on his family’s legacy as an company threat supervisor at Westfield.

“Just icing on the cake for me to understand how integral customers of your own family are in the record of your very own office was genuinely, actually fun to learn about,” he claimed. “And I however sense like it’s a tale I’m learning about to this working day.”

Westfield was established by farmers in 1848, meaning this yr marks its 175th anniversary.

Again then, it was named the Ohio Farmers Insurance plan Enterprise.

“They arrived together with 1 common purpose and that was to defend their people from fire,” Walkup reported.

The founder’s desk is on display screen inside of the present headquarters in the village of Westfield Center. It was Walkup’s fantastic-wonderful-terrific-fantastic-uncle’s.

“I have to picture some of the 1st guidelines ever written were scribed on this desk,” he explained.

Walkup has been with Westfield for just about a decade. His brother also performs there and the two of his parents did at a single time.

“Really retaining it in the relatives,” he mentioned.

Historic artifacts have been preserved and assembled into small reveals distribute during the creating.

The household workplace renovation and rebranding was completed in 2020, and Stuart Rosenberg was part of the team that produced the style and design possibilities. Around the board area is a wall of fire marks.

“And it was a way that insurance firms would recognize the attributes that they insured since originally they experienced their individual fireplace departments,” Rosenberg reported. “So, there was not a neighborhood fire division when this practice originated in Europe. Essentially just about every insurance plan company experienced its very own fire department.”

He felt it was vital to modernize symbols of the company’s heritage with a new and legitimate motto.

At this time, Westfield is the biggest employer in Medina County with more than 1,600 workforce in the condition of Ohio.

“Originally we were only guarding farmers and their farms from the risk of fire and now this artwork characteristic is meant to appear like fields of grain,” Rosenberg claimed when pointing at a mild fixture in the primary foyer area.

Rosenberg gave Spectrum Information a tour of the residence and casualty insurance coverage enterprise that underwrites business, personal, surety and specialty lines.

It all got started out by farmers who achieved at a normal shop in the 1840s. They aimed to steer clear of fraudulent policies by generating an coverage organization committed to defending their farmland in modest villages.

“So, they came alongside one another to say what can we do much better and they eventually petitioned the Ohio Normal Assembly to create the act that developed our enterprise,” said Rosenberg.

The company has withstood the take a look at of time by conquering a collection of hardships.

“So, there was the Civil War,” Rosenberg stated. “You have many serious economic recessions, the despair, equally environment wars. Certainly you will find been an additional pandemic. The very first pandemic in the 1900s, the flu pandemic, the COVID pandemic and everything in concerning.”

Walkup has come to be a background buff.

He’s curious about his ancestry and has put in fairly of bit of time investigating his genealogy to much better recognize who he is and exactly where he comes from.

Walkup typically passes by and appreciates the historic moments in his office that pay homage to his roots.

“When I arrive to get the job done I never necessarily truly feel like I’m coming to perform,” Walkup stated. “I really feel like I’m coming back household, which I really don’t think a large amount of individuals can say that.”

Gov. Mike DeWine put out a movie to congratulate Westfield on its milestone 175th anniversary. 

In accordance to Westfield, the only other northeast Ohio enterprise they are aware of that is been all over more time is Cleveland Cliffs. Westfield functions with a historian from the Western Reserve Historic Society to maintain the company’s heritage for years to arrive.