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Schaumburg, IL (July 22, 2014) - Assurance, one of the largest and most awarded independent insurance brokerages, was named for the nineth consecutive year one of "Chicago’s 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For®" by the National Association for Business Resources (NABR). The announcement took place at a symposium held Monday, July 21, 2014, at the Oak Brook Marriott.

The Best and Brightest Companies to Work For™ competition identifies and honors organizations throughout Chicago that display a commitment to excellence in their human resource practices and employee enrichment. Organizations are assessed based on categories such as communication, work-life balance, employee education, diversity, recognition, retention and more.

“The NABR takes the awards process very seriously and has worked diligently over the past 10 years to create a program that is unbiased, collects quantitative data, is rigorously judged and uses statistical analysis in order to achieve an award that is well respected in the HR field and among other associations,” said Jennifer Kluge, president of NABR.

The winning 101 companies also vie for 12 elite awards, which highlight extraordinary commitment to best employer practices. Assurance received its sixth Elite Award in the category of “Employee Education and Development.” The award signifies the extent to which an organization encourages, supports and creates a learning environment focused on career development.

At the ceremony, Assurance was honored for its formalized training, learning lunches, advanced designation courses, as well as on-the-job mentoring, career path development and continued education reimbursement programs. Currently, over 80% of employees participate in these courses and programs and 73% are pursuing advanced degrees. The company has a dedicated staff of six people focused solely on the training and education of employees. Additionally, Assurance University was formalized in 2004 and is another offering that has educated thousands of business professionals and employees through its 40 webinars and seminars each year.

“We thank NABR for selecting Assurance as a ‘Best and Brightest’ company for the nineth year in a row,” said Lisa Pinion, senior vice president, human resources at Assurance. “We’re big advocates for education and understand its value for employees, as well as our company and clients.”

Assurance’s commitment to employee education and engagement is apparent in the more than 60 awards received for corporate culture, including accolades from Fortune, Business Insurance, The Chicago Tribune and the American Heart Association. Due in large part to these efforts, Assurance has catapulted itself to the second largest independent insurance brokerage in Illinois with a 14 percent average organic growth rate the past ten years.

About the Best and Brightest Programs
The Best and Brightest Companies to Work For™ is a program of the National Association for Business Resources that provides the business community with the opportunity to gain recognition, showcase their best practices and demonstrate why they are an ideal place for employees to work. This national program celebrates those companies that are making better business, creating richer lives and building a stronger community as a whole. There are numerous regional celebrations throughout the country.

About Assurance
Assurance is among the largest and most awarded independent insurance brokerages in the U.S. A “Top 50” broker and repeated national “Best Place to Work” winner, Assurance creates value by minimizing risk and maximizing health for 6,000 businesses and individuals across the country. The company is headquartered in Schaumburg, IL with centralized office locations in Chicago, IL and St. Louis, MO. Visit Assurance at www.assuranceagency.com.