Our Agents

We may be biased, but we think we have the most talented, experienced, professional insurance agents in the field. It's our commitment to you. Meet the Unland staff below and discover how they can work for you. View our agent brochure here.

 

The Unland Companies

Afton Booth, CIC, CSRM
Chairman of the Board

A Western Illinois University graduate, Afton joined the Insurance Company of North America, now known as CIGNA, as a marketing representative. He joined The Unland Companies in 1980, and became President in 2008. He has been a Rotarian for more than 30 years, served as President of the East Peoria Rotary Club, a District Governors Representative and is a Paul Harris fellow. Afton is a Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) and Certified School Risk Manager (CSRM). He manages agency operations and business insurance sales.

Email: ABooth@Unland.com


Patrick J. Taphorn, CIC, CSRM
President

After completing his education and basketball career at the University of Wisconsin Green Bay, Pat joined The Unland Companies in 1989 as our Controller. In 1994 Pat moved to Sales. Pat serves his community well—past president of the Pekin Chamber of Commerce, assistant varsity basketball coach and member of the 40 Leaders Under 40 group. Pat is a Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) and the first Certified School Risk Manager (CSRM) in Illinois.

Email: PTaphorn@Unland.com


Bill Shock, CBC
Executive Vice President

In 1989, Bill merged his family agency with The Unland Companies. In his position of Executive Vice President of our benefits department, Bill and his staff are responsible for the sales of group and individual products, payroll related products, and all pension / estate products. Bill serves on several not-for-profit and professional association boards.

Email: BShock@Unland.com


Nate

Nate Rugaard
Vice President

Nate recently joined the Sales Team at The Unland Companies.  His past professional career includes serving as the Executive Director of Camp of Champions USA and most recently as the Athletic Director at Peoria Christian School.  Nate received his bachelor’s degree from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and his master’s degree from IUPUI in 2010.  Nate is a lifelong resident of Morton, where he and his wife, Joy, and their 4 children still reside.  His community involvement includes various church programs and youth sports. He also currently serves on the Morton Basketball Association board.  Nate’s sales and servicing activities will focus on Commercial and Personal Property & Casualty Insurance and Group Benefits.   
 

Email: NRugaard@Unland.com


Chad

Chad Arseneau
Financial Advisor

Chad, a graduate of Illinois State University, joined The Unland Companies in 2004 and brings 13 years of total experience in the financial markets and investment consulting.  Chad lives in Pekin with his wife and three Children.  He is active in his church, First United Methodist Church of Pekin, and has served on the Pekin Lions Club and Kiwanis Club.

Email: CArseneau@Unland.com


Mike Eddy

Michael Eddy
Agent

Michael recently became the agent at our Citizens Insurance in Macomb. A graduate of Commonwealth Baptist College, Mike brings several years of marketing experience and was an agent at Shelter Insurance before joining Unland Companies. As an agent with Shelter, Mike was given the Rising Star Award for his work in life insurance. Mike and his wife Erin have five boys, and their family is very involved at Victory Baptist Church in Macomb; Mike serves as Director of Ministries and Erin directs a Sunday school class for young people. Mike is also involved in the Chamber of Commerce and serves as an ambassador, and he is the current Chairman of the ambassador committee. Mike enjoys sports, and he is a volunteer basketball coach for the local YMCA. Mike specializes in commercial and personal lines insurance.

Email: MEddy@Unland.com


Bonnie Eeten
Consultant

Bonnie brought a wealth of knowledge and experience to The Unland Companies when she joined us in 2009. Her experience as a business owner, insurance broker and third party administrator can be put to work for you.

Email: BEeten@Unland.com


Mike Gresham Unland Companies

Mike Gresham
Agent

Mike brings 15 years of business experience in finance and commercial lending to our table at The Unland Companies. Additional work with local business owners and farm producers enhances his role as one of the newest members of our team. A lifelong resident of Delavan, Mike graduated from Millikin University in 1996. He lives with his wife and two daughters and gives back to his community as a member of the school board, city council, ambulance board, and athletic booster club. Commercial and personal lines will be Mike's focus along with assistance with our agricultural accounts.

Email: MGresham@Unland.com


Laura Maas
HR Solutions Manager

Laura joined The Unland Companies in April 2012. She is a graduate of Illinois State University and her background includes 18 years in human resource administration in the nonprofit and banking industry. She currently serves on the Workforce Network Board and the Youth Council of the Workforce Network Board. She is responsible for managing the Human Resource Services program for Unland clients and area businesses and organizations.

Email: LMaas@Unland.com


Joe Shehorn
Agent

As a lifelong resident of Pekin, Joe brings over 15 years of business experience to The Unland Companies. Joe focuses on commercial insurance and employee benefits.

Email: JShehorn@Unland.com


Travis Shock
Agent

Travis joined The Unland Companies in June 2012. After attending Saint Ambrose University on a football scholarship for one year, Travis transferred to Eureka College. As an agent for AFLAC, he received the award for Top Agent in Illinois for the 4th quarter of 2011. Travis has volunteered for the Children’s Hospital of Illinois, YMCA and Senior Olympics. At The Unland Companies, Travis will be focusing on commercial, personal, life and employee benefits.

Email: TShock@Unland.com


Betsy Yarcho

Betsy Yarcho, RHU, LUTCF, CBC
Manager of Client Services

A cum laude graduate from Eastern Illinois University in 1982, Betsy has more than 30 years’ experience in the insurance industry as a producer, manager and customer service representative. She recently joined the Unland team and specializes in Employee Benefits. Betsy has designations as a Registered Health Underwriter (RHU), a Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF) and a Chartered Benefit Consultant (CBC). In addition, she has completed Consumer Directed Health Care Certification. Betsy has an extensive background in public service and is active in the community.

Email: BYarcho@Unland.com


Winter Insurance

Zak Edmonds

Zak Edmonds
Agent

Zak recently joined Unland as an agent at the Winter Insurance location in East Peoria. He was formerly a Member Service Representative at CEFCU in Peoria and the Southwest Regional Leadership Consultant for his national fraternity, Alpha Tau Omega. A graduate of Monmouth College, Zak was born and raised in Peoria and currently resides in West Peoria. He is active in community organizations, including Big Brothers Big Sisters Bowl for Kids’ Sake, Hult Center for Healthy Living Lobster Boil and the West Peoria Jamboree 5k. Also the Head Lacrosse Coach at Dunlap High School, he enjoys outdoor activities, including sand volleyball and golf. Zak’s sales and servicing activities will focus on Commercial and Personal Property & Casualty, Life Insurance and Group Benefits.

Email: ZEdmonds@Unland.com


Janelle Hensley, CISR
Agent

Janelle joined Winter Insurance in March of 1978 as an East Peoria Community High School co-op student. That was the start of her lifelong commitment to the agency as she began her career ascent to obtain her insurance license in 1982 and her CISR designation in 2003. She concentrates today on a dual role as Assistant Office Manager and Personal Lines Manager. Janelle is a lifelong resident of East Peoria and enjoys being a member of East Peoria Kiwanis, where she serves on their Board and as Speaker Chair,and also is an East Peoria Chamber of Commerce volunteer.

Email: JHensley@Unland.com


Geraldine Winter
Agent

Geraldine joined Winter Insurance in June of 1974, after graduation from East Peoria Community High School. Over the years there is no aspect of the agency that she has not touched, from file clerk to management and sales of personal insurance, commercial insurance and financial products. She has enjoyed serving various civic organizations as a volunteer board member. This includes the East Peoria Rotary Club and East Peoria Chamber of Commerce, where she has served as Board member, President and Ambassador.

Email: GWinter@Unland.com


 

Unland Home Office: 2211 Broadway, Pekin, IL 61554 | 309.347.2177or 800.747-3241|  Citizens Insurance: 127 S. Side Square  Macomb, Illinois 61455 | (309) 837-0609
Winter Insurance: 201 Clock Tower Drive, East Peoria, IL 61611 | (309) 699-3938 | An Affiliate of Your Hometown Community Banks
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