Insurance Agents

As your trusted advisor for insurance solutions. We take a careful approach to finding policies that properly cover your home, family and business while providing neighborly, expert advice.
Our insurance agents are located in six northwest Ohio cities: Bowling Green, Bryan, Defiance, Lima, Maumee and Oregon.

Matt Karaffa

Property & Casualty Agent
Matt Karaffa
Phone: 419-354-2749

209 W. Poe Road
Bowling Green, OH 43402

Ben Otley

Employee Benefits Consultant
Ben Otley
Phone: Phone (419) 354-2734

209 W. Poe Road
Bowling Green, OH 43402

Jeff Smith

Property & Casualty Agent
Jeff Smith
Phone: Phone: (419) 354-2731

209 W. Poe Road
Bowling Green, OH 43402

Mike Kurivial

Employee Benefits Consultant
Mike Kurivial
Phone: Phone: (419) 633-0823

204 E. High Street
Bryan, OH 43506

Mike Klein

President and Chief Operating Officer
Mike Klein
Phone: Phone (419) 785-2216

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

Steve Grosenbacher

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Steve Grosenbacher
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2226

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

Ken Keller

EVP, Employee Benefits Consultant
Ken Keller
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2212

601 Clinton St.
Defiance, OH 43512

A.J. Stites

Property & Casualty Agent
A.J. Stites
Phone: 419-784-5431

511 Fifth St.

Defiance, OH 43512

Andy Weisgerber

Property & Casualty Agent
Andy Weisgerber
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2228

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

Tim Whetstone

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Tim Whetstone
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2224

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

Larry Woods

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Larry Woods
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2225

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

John Guagenti

Employee Benefits Consultant
John Guagenti
Phone: (419) 741-7466

2600 Allentown Road
Lima, OH 45805

Amanda Brown

Employee Benefits Consultant
Amanda Brown
Phone: (419) 794-7811

1755 Indian Wood Circle
Maumee, OH 43537

Barb Gerken

Director of Employee Benefits Compliance
Barb Gerken
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7802

1755 Indian Wood Circle
Maumee, OH 43537

John Payak III

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
John Payak III
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7800

1755 Indian Wood Circle
Maumee, OH 43537

Luke J. Shipp

VP, Commercial Lines
Luke J. Shipp
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7816

1755 Indian Wood Circle
Maumee, OH 43537

Robert Truckor

Property & Casualty Agent
Robert Truckor
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-5011

1755 Indian Wood Circle
Maumee, OH 43537

Marty Dubbs Jr.

Property & Casualty Agent
Marty Dubbs Jr.
Phone: Phone: (419) 720-6500

4350 Navarre Ave
Oregon, OH 43616

Randy Huber

Personal Lines Agent
Randy Huber
Phone: Phone: (419) 354-2730

209 W. Poe Road
Bowling Green, OH 43402

511 Fifth Street
Defiance, OH 43512

Matt Karaffa

Property & Casualty Agent
Matt Karaffa
Phone: 419-354-2749

Matt is new talent at First Insurance Group and we are excited to welcome him to our team.  Matt comes to us with a background in customer service and management. He has a passion for helping others and takes the time to listen and understand his client’s lifestyle and business goals.

Matt works closely with his mentors, Jeff Smith and Robert Truckor, to ensure his clients have the coverage they need.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Ben Otley

Employee Benefits Consultant
Ben Otley
Phone: Phone (419) 354-2734

Ben has been in the insurance industry since 1995, servicing various employers with group health, life, disability, dental and vision plans. Ben received his bachelor's degree from Bowling Green State University. He is a member of St. Timothy's Episcopal Church in Perrysburg, Kiwanis Club of Bowling Green and Dynamic Connection Source Chapter of BNI. Ben is also active with the Bowling Green Chamber of Commerce.

Employee Benefits Specialties

  • Fully-Insured Plans
  • Self-Funded Plans
  • Medical
  • Prescription
  • Dental and Vision
  • Cafeteria Plans*
  • Life
  • Disability
  • Long-Term Care
  • Voluntary Programs
  • Medicare Supplements**

Consulting Services

  • Wellness Programs
  • Claims Review
  • Underwriting Services
  • Plan Design/Price Modeling
  • Benchmarking Studies
  • Educational Seminars
  • Vendor Performance Evaluation
  • Employee Benefits Legislative Compliance
  • Additional Resources
  • HR Connection
  • Zywave
  • Newsletters

*Group Only
**Individual Only

Jeff Smith

Property & Casualty Agent
Jeff Smith
Phone: Phone: (419) 354-2731

Jeff has been a licensed insurance agent since 1976, specializing in commercial and personal insurance needs. Jeff graduated from Heidelberg University with a bachelor's degree in economics. Later, he earned his Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) certification and Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) certification. His areas of practice include manufacturing, non-profits, financial institutions, commercial retail/wholesale, contractors and personal insurance.  

Jeff also served as President of the Northwest Ohio Chapter of the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters in 1987 - 1988. He is the director for Harbor Behavioral Health of Wood County. Jeff is a member of First United Methodist Church of Bowling Green.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Mike Kurivial

Employee Benefits Consultant
Mike Kurivial
Phone: Phone: (419) 633-0823

Mike entered the insurance industry in 1982, and specializes in employee benefits at First Insurance Group. A Defiance College business graduate, Mike co-founded the Ohio Benefit Group, one of the largest group health care agencies in Ohio. As broker/consultant at First Insurance Group, he services public and private sector employer groups in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana.

Employee Benefits Specialties

  • Fully-Insured Plans
  • Self-Funded Plans
  • Medical
  • Prescription
  • Dental and Vision
  • Cafeteria Plans*
  • Life
  • Disability
  • Long-Term Care
  • Voluntary Programs
  • Medicare Supplements**

Consulting Services

  • Wellness Programs
  • Claims Review
  • Underwriting Services
  • Plan Design/Price Modeling
  • Benchmarking Studies
  • Educational Seminars
  • Vendor Performance Evaluation
  • Employee Benefits Legislative Compliance
  • Additional Resources
    • HR Connection
    • Zywave
    • Newsletters

*Group Only
**Individual Only

Mike Klein

President and Chief Operating Officer
Mike Klein
Phone: Phone (419) 785-2216

Mike came to First Insurance Group with over 37 years of senior level experience in the financial services industry. As President and Chief Operating Officer of First Insurance Group, he leads over 60 insurance professionals within First Insurance Group whose main focus is to grow customer relationships with quality sales and exceptional service.

Mike earned a bachelor's degree from Defiance College and completed The Graduate School of Banking at the University of Colorado. He currently serves as President of the Defiance Area Foundation Board of Trustees. He also serves as Campaign Chair for Friends of Scouting for the Defiance area. He is a member and past President of the Defiance Optimist Club, a member of Defiance Rotary Club, past President of Defiance Area Chamber of Commerce, past President of the Defiance Area YMCA, past member of the Board of Trustees of ProMedica Defiance Regional Hospital and past Vice President of the Defiance County CIC. Mike is a member of St. John's Catholic Church.

Steve Grosenbacher

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Steve Grosenbacher
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2226

Steve has been in the financial services industry for over 35 years. He's a part of the management team that oversees the operation of the company. Steve earned his bachelor's Degree from Defiance College and is a Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter. He is a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, Defiance Rotary Club and past Chairman of the Defiance Chamber of Commerce.

Ken Keller

EVP, Employee Benefits Consultant
Ken Keller
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2212

Ken has over 20 years of experience and is the employee benefits manager for First Insurance Group. He received his bachelor's degree in business administration from Indiana University. He is very active in the community and is currently a school board member for Northeastern Local Schools - Tinora and a board member of the Defiance Airport Authority. Ken was a former board member of the Defiance Area YMCA, Defiance Area Chamber of Commerce and Ketterning Country Club. He is a member of St. Mike's Catholic Church and was recently appointed to the Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield Broker Advisory Council.

Employee Benefits Specialties

  • Fully-Insured Plans
  • Self-Funded Plans
  • Medical
  • Prescription
  • Dental and Vision
  • Cafeteria Plans*
  • Life
  • Disability
  • Long-Term Care
  • Voluntary Programs
  • Medicare Supplements**

Consulting Services

  • Wellness Programs
  • Claims Review
  • Underwriting Services
  • Plan Design/Price Modeling
  • Benchmarking Studies
  • Educational Seminars
  • Vendor Performance Evaluation
  • Employee Benefits Legislative Compliance
  • Additional Resources
    • HR Connection
    • Zywave
    • Newsletters

*Group Only
**Individual Only

A.J. Stites

Property & Casualty Agent
A.J. Stites
Phone: 419-784-5431

A.J. is new talent at First Insurance Group and we are excited to welcome him to our team.  He comes to us with a background in research and teamwork. A.J. has a passion for helping others and takes the time to listen and understand his client’s lifestyle and business goals.

A.J. works closely with his mentors, Andy Weisgerber and Larry Woods, to ensure his clients have the coverage they need.

 

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Andy Weisgerber

Property & Casualty Agent
Andy Weisgerber
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2228

Andy entered the insurance industry in 1998 and has successfully built a clientele that includes individuals and business owners. He emphasizes custom risk management solutions to cover clients' specific needs. His areas of practice include high net worth clients, privately held businesses, dealerships, restaurants, home health agencies and contractors.

Andy received his Bachelor of Science Degree from Bowling Green State University. He is very involved in the community where he is a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, YMCA Youth Volunteer, Defiance Chamber of Commerce Board member and the former president of Defiance Premier Networking.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Tim Whetstone

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Tim Whetstone
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2224

Tim has been a licensed insurance agent since 1994, specializing in property and casualty insurance. His areas of practice include manufacturing, integrated automation, privately held businesses and contractors.

After graduating from Ohio University, Tim earned his master's degree from Syracuse University. He is a member of the Defiance Rotary, St. John's United Church of Christ, Defiance College Purple and Gold Club, Defiance Area Foundation, Defiance School Foundation, Board of Trustee Member of Defiance College and past Chairman of the Defiance Chamber of Commerce.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Larry Woods

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
Larry Woods
Phone: Phone: (419) 785-2225

Larry has been a licensed insurance agent since 1980, specializing in management and sales. Larry received his bachelor's degree from Eastern Kentucky University in business administration. His areas of practice include manufacturing, privately held businesses, financial institutions, trucking, schools and contractors. He is a member of St. John United Church of Christ, Defiance Rotary Club, Defiance Area YMCA and Auglaize Golf Club in Defiance. Larry is a former board member of the Defiance College Purple and Gold Club, Defiance Area Foundation, Defiance Hospital Foundation, Kettering Country Club and Defiance Chamber of Commerce.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding
  • PERSONAL INSURANCE
  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

John Guagenti

Employee Benefits Consultant
John Guagenti
Phone: (419) 741-7466

John has over 11 years of employee benefits industry experience and specializes in employee benefit plan evaluation and development, fully-insured or self-funded. He works closely with his clients to develop a strategic plan focused on meeting their financial and employee retention goals. John is committed to keeping his clients abreast of market trends, relevant changes and updates in the healthcare industry to ensure legislative compliance.

John graduated from The Ohio State University. He is a licensed health and life insurance professional and has a Chartered Benefit Consultant designation. John is a member of LB Grass Drags and the Northwest Ohio Association of Health Underwriters.

Employee Benefits Specialties

  • Fully-Insured Plans
  • Self-Funded Plans
  • Medical
  • Prescription
  • Dental and Vision
  • Cafeteria Plans*
  • Life
  • Disability
  • Long-Term Care
  • Voluntary Programs
  • Medicare Supplements**

Consulting Services

  • Wellness Programs
  • Claims Review
  • Underwriting Services
  • Plan Design/Price Modeling
  • Benchmarking Studies
  • Educational Seminars
  • Vendor Performance Evaluation
  • Employee Benefits Legislative Compliance
  • Additional Resources
  • HR Connection
  • Zywave
  • Newsletters

*Group Only
**Individual Only

Amanda Brown

Employee Benefits Consultant
Amanda Brown
Phone: (419) 794-7811

Amanda has 15 years of employee benefits industry experience. Amanda specializes in employee benefit plan evaluation and development, fully-insured or self-funded. She works closely with her clients to develop a strategic plan focused on meeting their financial and employee retention goals. Amanda is committed to keeping her clients abreast of market trends, relevant changes and updates in the healthcare industry to ensure legislative compliance.

Employee Benefits Specialties

  • Fully-Insured Plans
  • Self-Funded Plans
  • Medical
  • Prescription
  • Dental and Vision
  • Cafeteria Plans*
  • Life
  • Disability
  • Long-Term Care
  • Voluntary Programs
  • Medicare Supplements**

Consulting Services

  • Wellness Programs
  • Claims Review
  • Underwriting Services
  • Plan Design/Price Modeling
  • Benchmarking Studies
  • Educational Seminars
  • Vendor Performance Evaluation
  • Employee Benefits Legislative Compliance
  • Additional Resources
    • HR Connection
    • Zywave
    • Newsletters

*Group Only
**Individual Only

Barb Gerken

Director of Employee Benefits Compliance
Barb Gerken
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7802

Barb joins the First Insurance team with over 26 years of industry experience; her primary responsibility are client education and compliance with state and federal legislation affecting employee benefit programs. She works with both business owners and human resource representatives to prepare and administer the requirements of the Affordable Care Act as well as other legislative provisions.

Barb is well-respected for her ability to take complex subject matter and share that knowledge in real-life application. In 2013, she was awarded the Educator of the Year award by the Ohio Association of Health Underwriters for her work in educating association members on the provisions and impacts of the Affordable Care Act.

John Payak III

EVP, Property & Casualty Agent
John Payak III
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7800

John has been a licensed insurance agent since 1979, specializing in management and sales. He received his bachelor's degree in business administration from The University of Toledo and is also a Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC). His areas of practice include high net worth clients, privately held businesses, financial institutions, churches, schools and contractors.

John is a member of many community organizations such as, National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame, Harbor Foundation, Sunbridge Schools, Monsignor Schmit Foundation and Italian American Sports Club. He is a former board member of the Make-A-Wish foundation of Northwest Ohio and a former trustee of The Independent Insurance Agents Association. John and his wife, Terri, reside in Toledo. He is an active member of Blessed Sacrament and The Historic Church of St. Patrick's parishes.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Luke J. Shipp

VP, Commercial Lines
Luke J. Shipp
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-7816

Luke is a graduate from Bluffton University and works closely with producers and account managers to deliver First Insurance's Customer First experience while building relationships as a Trusted Advisor. He has over 10 years of industry experience and has worked for carriers Auto-Owners Insurance and Cincinnati Insurance Companies. His distinct knowledge on how carriers work will help provide his customers with competitive rates and custom suited policies. His areas of practice include privately held businesses, manufacturing, high net worth clients, trucking, schools and contractors.

Luke is actively involved within the community and is a member of several organizations. Some of these include: Make-A-Wish Young Professionals' Advisory Council, Bluffton University Alumni Board and Engaging People, Inspiring Change (EPIC) - Toledo Chamber of Commerce.  

Commercial Practice

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Practice

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Robert Truckor

Property & Casualty Agent
Robert Truckor
Phone: Phone: (419) 794-5011

Robert has been a licensed insurance agent since 2009 and has successfully built a clientele that includes individuals and business owners. He specializes in Property and Casualty Insurance for both Personal and Commercial Lines. His areas of practice include apartments and rental homes, golf courses, privately held businesses, farms and contractors. Robert received his bachelor's degree from The University of Toledo and is involved in his community where he is the President of the Swanton Athletic Boosters, a member of the American Legion and the Northwest Ohio Jr. Golf Association.

Commercial Practice

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Practice

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Marty Dubbs Jr.

Property & Casualty Agent
Marty Dubbs Jr.
Phone: Phone: (419) 720-6500

Marty has been a licensed insurance agent since 1977. He received his bachelor's Degree in Business Administration as well as his master's of business administration from The University of Toledo. His areas of practice include construction, manufacturing, wholesale distribution, financial institutions, and real estate development. He is a former Trustee for the Independent Insurance Agent's Association. He is a member of the Eastern Maumee Bay Chamber of Commerce, Oregon Economic Development Foundation and Ottawa County Improvement Corporation.

Commercial Insurance

  • Property Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Directors and Officers
  • Employment Practices
  • Trustee and Fiduciary
  • Professional Liability
  • Bonding

Personal Insurance

  • Auto, Home, Condo, Renters
  • High Value Homeowners
  • Personal Umbrella
  • Scheduled and Valuable Items

Consulting Services

  • 24-hour Claims Service
  • Educational Seminars
  • OSHA Compliance
  • Claims Review
  • Disaster Planning/Recovery
  • Loss Control and Risk Management
  • Client Resources
    • Zywave

Randy Huber

Personal Lines Agent
Randy Huber
Phone: Phone: (419) 354-2730

Randy has been in the insurance industry since 1979 assisting personal and commercial clients that are interested in Home, Auto, Business and Life insurance. After graduating from Miami University in 1979, Randy started working at Huber, Harger, Welt and Smith Insurance Agency Inc. He currently holds a Certified Insurance Counselor designation and enjoys family, hiking, photography and is an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist.