A 50-year history of innovation and service.
The Legacy of Our Founder
The Lasting Legacy of Founder Herbert W. Kaufman
Building North America’s largest private specialty insurance firm was no small feat. The empire that is now H.W. Kaufman Group started with the vision of one man—Founder, Herbert W. Kaufman. Through his leadership, Herb was able to grow the company from virtually nothing to the multi-billion dollar organization that it is now, with over 60 offices around the globe and more than 2,000 employees – while sticking to his core values. Now, his son Alan Jay Kaufman stands at the helm of the organization, and while Herb is no longer with us, his vision and dream live on within the legacy he built.
A pioneer in wholesale insurance
Blazing a trail in specialty insurance took determination, foresight, and years of hard work. Herb began his career working at his father’s plumbing and real estate development businesses, handling all financial aspects. This early role included maintaining insurance, and it was this aspect of the family business that spurred his imagination. Soon, Herb was looking for an opportunity in the industry.
In 1969, he established H.W. Kaufman Group and Burns & Wilcox. Herb first focused in retail insurance, but he quickly saw the potential of wholesale. After success in both areas, he recognized that the retail and wholesale businesses were competing against each other.
“Although retail was more profitable in the short term, my father had a long-term vision to grow wholesale and devoted 100 percent of the company to that direction,” said Alan Jay Kaufman, Chairman, President, and CEO, H.W. Kaufman Group and Burns & Wilcox. “While this was not popular or familiar at the time, he made a bold prediction that paid off. He was truly ahead of his time.” Read More