Helping Agents & Clients as an Ag Marketing Underwriter

February 10, 2020

When you become a Farm Bureau agent, you’ll be supported by a team of professionals to help you deliver the best customer experience to your client/members. Among the team you’ll work with are our Ag Marketing Underwriters (AMU). AMUs use their background in agriculture to offer support to agents when writing ag business. Learn more about how Ag Marketing Underwriters help agents and clients during the farm underwriting process. 

Are you wondering what ag support you’d have as agent? We interviewed Ashley VanAernam, one of our Ag Marketing Underwriters (AMU), to get to know more about her role within Farm Bureau, why she chose to hone in on the agriculture section of our industry and how she works with agents to help clients protect what matters most. Get to know more about her and how the Marketing Underwriters help agents insure farms!

Ag Marketing Underwriters Assist Farm Bureau Agents When Interacting With Clients

In my role, I am responsible for the growth, development and profitability of agriculture risks in my territory. It is my goal and mission to make agriculture the line of choice for my agents and to make the underwriting process as streamlined as possible for the clients and agency force.

My territory is an eclectic mix of folks, so I have different relationships with all of my agents. Some are veteran agents that are very comfortable with the farm markets. Others are writing their first farm and just getting comfortable with the process and the conversations that take place during the inspections. My experience as an agent and my background in agriculture creates a sense of security, particularly with those less seasoned agents, if questions come up during the inspections or closing.

AMUs are Field Based

Since an ag marketing underwriter is a field based position, the majority of my interactions are in-person with clients and agents. I try to spend four days in the field and one day in the office catching up on paperwork. When I’m in the field, I typically complete two, sometimes three pre-inspections in a given day. I spend a lot of time talking on the phone with agents and following up regarding inspections we’ve done or still need to do.

My motivation is being able to directly impact the sales process in a way that is unique to this industry. I’m very proud to be a part of the ag marketing underwriter team that helps support agents.

How did you learn about the agriculture industry to prepare for this job?

I’ve been really blessed to be able to be hands-on in our family’s operation and as the saying goes, experience is the best teacher. I’ve probably drawn the most from those personal experiences. For example, when we moved out to the farm it was late November, and we learned a lot about responsibility and hard work when we were calving during a blizzard!

experience in agriculture

I also have an awesome collection of people around me that have been great resources over the years. I’ve grown a pretty decent network of contacts in the ag sector that keep me up-to-date on the ever-changing agriculture industry.

Become a Farm Bureau Agent

If you’re thinking about becoming a Farm Bureau agent, there’s really no better time than now to get started. Have a background in agriculture? Farm Bureau agent offers up to $25,000 in bonuses if you have at least three years of experience or history with an agriculture related company or operation.¹ Learn more about how to get started as a Farm Bureau agent today!


become an insurance agent

¹ Additional criteria applies. The District Manager can provide additional information. The final determination of bonus eligibility is at the discretion of the Vice President of Agencies.