Trimble Insurance has been an anchor in the Delaware business community since 1946, and this year, the family-owned company is celebrating 75 years of service to residents throughout the county.
Founded by J.C. Graham, a prominent farmer at the time, the business began operations out of the family farmhouse located near Ashley before moving to a traditional office in the village in 1961. In 1976, the company moved into its current office in Delaware at 39 S. Liberty St.
Graham’s daughter, Twila, became the second generation to take over the family business, partnering with her husband, Howard Trimble, to create the Graham-Trimble Insurance Agency in 1961. Twila Trimble’s son and current company president, Greg Trimble, represents the third generation of the family to get involved in the business, having joined the agency in 1981. Twila Trimble still serves as the secretary and treasurer of the business.
Greg Trimble told The Gazette that following in his parents’ footsteps was always the business path he expected to take. “Growing up in it, being involved in the community was exactly what I wanted to do and have continued to do,” he said, adding that having the chance to be a third-generation family member in the business was also intriguing.
What began as an agency dedicated to farm insurance has grown to offer a range of commercial and personal lines, as well as life insurance and the continued farm insurance policies. The agency, which has grown to now include 14 employees, has also added an office in Westerville.
“I enjoy taking care of people and protecting their assets, hopes, and their dreams,” Greg Trimble said of what he enjoys the most about working in the community.
In 2014, Trimble Insurance welcomed a fourth-generation family member when Greg Trimble’s son, Kirt, joined the team as a risk management advisor after working in underwriting and sales for Grange Insurance following his graduation from the Fisher College of Business at The Ohio State University.
“It’s really special to have Kirt join us and be able to work together with him,” Greg Trimble said. “It’s very enjoyable to be able to work with him and help grow the business, and to have his insight and expertise come into the business so we can take this to the next level.”
Greg Trimble said there has been a lot of consolidation in the industry through the years, with larger agencies buying up smaller businesses. With Kirt Trimble’s experience working with Grange prior to joining Trimble, Greg Trimble said he feels his son, now the vice president, has valuable insight to help the family business stay independent.
“He has a vast knowledge of both sides of the business, which helps us as we grow and focus on our path in the future,” Greg Trimble said. “We want to stay independent. We have no intentions of selling to anybody. We want to grow organically. It’s a family business, and it will continue to be a family business.”
Kirt Trimble said of the company, “We are adapting to our changing environment in terms of technology and tools to best serve our customers. The insurance industry is changing. You can get policies online, through an app, and on every street corner. The difference and value of a trusted and experienced agency like ours is at the time when you need us the most; when there’s a claim. We are there from start-to-finish for our customers, not just to sell a policy.”
Asked what will be vital for Trimble Insurance to continue growing on its own, Greg Trimble said he believes communication will be key. “It’s communicating, not only with family members but also with our staff so that everybody knows where everything is at. And then planning, making sure that everything is planned right,” he said.
Although there is a clear line of succession in place to ensure the Trimble legacy continues, Greg Trimble is not eyeing retirement at the moment. While the process of grooming Kirt Trimble to one day take over is already underway, Greg Trimble said he still gets too much out of his daily work to leave just yet. “I enjoy and love doing what I do,” he said.
However, when the day does come for Greg Trimble to walk away, there is peace of mind in knowing who will be there to lead Trimble Insurance into the next era. “The business is in great hands right now, and it will continue to be in great hands with Kirt,” he said.
Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @DillonDavis56.