Friday, March 9, 2012

Goodwin: A State Insurance Commissioner Always In Motion

North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin, by all accounts public and private, is constantly in motion.

Whether giving speeches all across the State, attending community and charitable and church events, supporting firefighter causes, meeting with local legislators and area leaders, or informing and inspiring thousands and thousands of licensees and business owners and families about his work for them, Goodwin has been described as being “everywhere.” (“Everywhere” is a lot easier to say than “ubiquitous!”)
“With 600,000 licensees and 9 million citizens of North Carolina – not to mention the broad impact and scope of this office -- it shouldn’t be surprising that my regular week is chockfull of public appearances and in-state travel,” said Goodwin. “In fact, I’m of the opinion that someone is not doing anything unless they are in motion.”
Individuals, families and businesses love it when they hear and see how he is fighting for them – especially after catastrophes like hurricanes and tornadoes or on the cost of insurance, namely car insurance. North Carolina has the lowest average car insurance rates in the South from Delaware to Texas, and is the eighth lowest in the country. Through rate cuts, rebates, refunds, and restitution, Goodwin and his team have saved consumers – including businesses – more than $1 Billion over the last 3-1/2 years. And in 2011 alone, Goodwin's Consumer Services Division recovered $42 million for consumers.

Agents love it when they are reminded about how he is fighting for fairness and their inclusion in his advisory committees, and supporting initiatives that help them keep their agencies open and so their communities continue having access to an insurance counselor on Main Street and avoid marketplace disruption. The insurance commissioner has been described by professionals in state and out of state as “one of the most accessible insurance regulators in the country.”

Firefighters and other first responders love it that Commissioner Goodwin – who is also the State Fire Marshal – champions their causes, and takes the time to join them in moments of triumph and in moments of tragedy.

Law enforcement officials, prosecutors, insurance companies and citizens love that Goodwin’s team has focused even more intently on ferreting out insurance fraud. Over the last 3-1/2 years, his investigators have recovered $47.9 million for victims of insurance fraud.

Homebuilders and local government building officials love it that just a few weeks ago Insurance Commissioner Goodwin’s personal intervention on a code book matter helped avert a crisis (using the words of the North Carolina Homebuilders Association), and prevented the unlawful stoppage of building permits all across North Carolina. Building permits translate to jobs and economic growth, and Goodwin knows it.

And, consumer advocates herald his service as chairman of the national consumers participation board and his focus on transparency in government. Many have highlighted Goodwin’s requirement for more public comment periods and opportunities for public hearings, etc.

In most months he’s been found in every corner of the state – not just Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro, Winston-Salem and Asheville, but also in Manteo, Murphy, Matthews, Morrisville, Mocksville, and Marston.

And if you haven’t seen North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin before or lately, then don’t worry: You will see him very soon.

After all, like Sir Isaac Newton’s First Law teaches us --- things in motion tend to stay in motion.

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To track his motion and his successes, go to or follow him on Twitter (@WayneGoodwinNC) or on Facebook homepage here.