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Barb Baurer Retirement

COUNTRY Financial COO Announces Retirement

Dec. 9, 2014

Barb Baurer, chief operating officer for COUNTRY Financial, announced she will retire in January 2015.

“Our employees and agency force have been like a family for me over the past 37 years, but after 25 years in executive leadership I’m excited to explore this next chapter,” says Baurer. “I’ll leave knowing COUNTRY is in excellent hands and will continue to be the most trustworthy and customer-focused organization in our industry.”

“For more than 37 years, Barb’s leadership has been an asset to the Illinois Farm Bureau Family of Companies,” says Chief Executive Officer Kurt Bock. “Over the course of her career, she played an instrumental role in the growth of COUNTRY Financial. We appreciate Barb’s extreme dedication to not only improving COUNTRY, but also her voice and efforts for our industry and our communities. I know I can speak for the employees, financial  representatives and customers of COUNTRY who will certainly echo our thanks for Barb’s leadership.”

About Baurer

Baurer has served as chief operating officer for COUNTRY Financial since September 1999. She is a member of the Boards of Directors for alliances COUNTRY has made with the following insurers:

  • Cotton States Life Insurance, Alpharetta, Ga.
  • Holyoke Mutual Insurance Company of Salem, Mass.,
  • Middlesex Mutual Assurance Company of Middletown, Conn.

Baurer also serves as president for Holyoke and Middlesex.

Since joining COUNTRY in 1977, Baurer has served in various positions, including vice president and general manager of the Property and Casualty companies. Prior to that, she served as vice president of Information Services. She joined the COUNTRY Management Committee/Leadership Council in 1989.  

Baurer earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a Master’s of Business Administration from Eastern Illinois University, Charleston. Earlier this year, she received the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Griffith Insurance Education Foundation, an award recognizing industry leaders for their commitment to education. In 2013, she received the Eastern Illinois University Distinguished Alumna Award. And, in 2006, she received the Outstanding Graduate Alumnus Award from the Eastern Illinois University College of Business Graduate School.

Baurer furthered her education, earning three insurance designations: the Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU).

She is a member of the Board of the American Institute for CPCU. Baurer is the past chair of the Eastern Illinois University College of Business Advisory Board. She is also the past board chair for Advocate BroMenn Regional Medical System. She also serves on the United Way of McLean County Board and was the 2012 Campaign Chair. 

In addition, Baurer was named a 2004 Woman of Distinction by the YWCA of McLean County (Ill.). She was named a 2010 Woman Worth Watching by Profiles in Diversity Journal. Baurer is also one of the National Diversity Council’s Most Powerful and Influential Women in Illinois for 2010 and 2011. In 2013, Baurer was inducted into the Illinois State University (ISU) College of Business Hall of Fame. The Griffith Insurance Education Foundation also awarded her the Distinguished Service Award in 2013.

About COUNTRY Financial®

COUNTRY Financial ( serves about one million households and businesses throughout the United States and offers a full range of financial products and services from auto, home and life insurance to retirement planning services, investment management and annuities.