Council Foundation Logo Leaders Edge


Contact: Brianne Spellane
Senior Director, Communications & Content Strategy


WASHINGTON, D.C. – May 30, 2018 – The Council Foundation announced today the formal establishment of the Dave Oberkircher Future Leaders Fund. The fund is intended to help strengthen the impact of the Foundation’s scholarship program and honor Oberkircher’s legacy of leadership and entrepreneurialism.

Oberkircher co-founded Trion in 1999 and helped grow it to be the largest privately held employee benefits consultant and brokerage in the United States. In 2010, he oversaw its acquisition by Marsh & McLennan Agency. Oberkircher was a longtime member of the Council of Employee Benefits Executives and was an enthusiastic entrepreneur, father, community leader and mentor. He touched countless people in the employee benefits industry, including many leading members of The Council. Oberkircher died in October 2016 after a two-year battle with brain cancer.

The Dave Oberkircher Future Leaders Fund is the first legacy fund set up under The Council Foundation, which is the 501(c)3 charitable and educational arm of The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers. The Foundation’s mission is to support new and young talent interesting in pursuing a career in the commercial insurance brokerage industry.

“The Dave O Fund brings together Dave’s passion for education and his passion for the insurance industry. The dollars this fund generates will truly make a difference in the industry that has given each of us so much,” said David L. Eslick, chairman and chief executive officer of Marsh & McLennan Agency, in White Plains, N.Y., and The Council’s 2018 chairman.

Over the past two years, The Council Foundation has awarded $625,000 in academic scholarships to 150 college students across the country in various majors. Students are required to complete an internship at a Council member firm in order to be eligible for a scholarship. Sixty-eight percent of Foundation scholars have been hired full-time at a brokerage firm or have gone on to repeat a Council-affiliated internship.

This summer, The Council Foundation expects more than 40 of its member brokerages to nominate interns for a scholarship, doubling the participation from last year.

“The goal of this fund is to expand awareness, engagement in, and financial support of, The Council Foundation’s existing philanthropic work,” said Markham McKnight, president and chief executive officer of BXS Insurance in Baton Rouge, La., and chair of The Council Foundation. “It’s aimed at attracting dynamic talent into a career in the commercial insurance brokerage industry, and we’re thrilled to see it come to fruition.”

The announcement of the fund was made at The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers’ 2018 Employee Benefits Leadership Forum in Colorado Springs.

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