February 7, 2008

Western National Insurance Group Announces Addition to Management Team

Effective as of February 11, 2008, Jeffrey J. Couchman will join the Western National Insurance Group's management team, serving as both “Senior Vice President & General Manager” of the Group's west coast operation at Western National Assurance Company, and as “Vice President - Corporate” at the Group's lead company, Western National Mutual Insurance Company. The former role will see Jeff working with our Seattle team to build upon the successful growth and profitability they have gained over the past several years, replacing the retiring Ken Stover. Jeff's role with the Mutual Company will initially be focused on portfolio risk management (particularly property concentration of risk) and business development through mergers, acquisitions and affiliations.

Jeff received his double major BA from Gustavus Adolphus College before entering the insurance field as a commercial lines underwriter, and later as a risk analyst, at Federated Insurance. His last 7 years have been spent with one of the world's leading risk management and reinsurance brokerage firms, Benfield, formerly known as EW Blanch, where he has been responsible for devising financial solutions and managing risk for regional insurance companies. In his role as Vice President at Benfield, and in addition to placing reinsurance in the U.S. and London, Jeff served as an instructor in risk and reinsurance for brokers, reinsurers, and insurance company staff. His dedication to continuing education resulted in his earning the CPCU, ARe, and A designations.

“We are very pleased to have attracted the kind of talent and expertise that Jeff will bring to our policyholders and agents,” said President & CEO, Stu Henderson. “It's people like Jeff who will be the backbone of this company in the years to come.”

Western National Insurance Group is a super-regional insurance group with over $500 million in Assets and writing over $245 million in premium annually. The group consists of four regional Property and Casualty Insurance companies with shared administrative offices in Edina, MN and a local underwriting and claim office in Seattle, WA. Western National Mutual Insurance Company writes personal and commercial lines in MN, WI, SD, ND and IA; Western National Assurance Company writes personal lines in WA, OR, NV and UT, and commercial lines in WA and OR; and Western Home Insurance Company writes personal lines in MN, WA, NV and UT. Pioneer Specialty Insurance Company will commence writing commercial lines in those territories in 2008. All of the companies' products are sold exclusively through professional independent agents.

For further information, please contact:

Mary S. Manley
SVP Corporate Affairs & Administration

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