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Our Story

In 1952, Cy Smoller had planned to join the family shoe business, after fulfilling his 2 year Army hitch.  Unfortunately, the advent of imports put many domestic shoe factories out of business.  Having two uncles in the Credit Union industry, it was decided that Cy would open up an insurance agency and service many of the members of the Metropolitan Credit Union (now Metro) and the New Haven Railroad Employees Credit Union (later to become the Wollaston Credit Union). And so it began on Atlantic Avenue, in South Station, just across the street from the New Haven Railroad Credit Union office.

The marriage was one made in heaven as to this day, there are still retired members of the railroad (and their families) who purchase their insurance from us.  Cy was the consummate salesman.  He built his practice not with a fancy suit and a lot of big words.  His way, one in which he passed on to his son Mark, was building relationships on knowledge, compassion, a handshake and a kibbitz.

In the mid 1970’s, Cy’s practice was well established, as was the Smoller family in Newton.  Given all the major construction happening in Boston, and Cy’s desire to bring his practice back to his community, the agency was moved to its current location on Route 9 in Chestnut Hill.

In the meantime, Mark had graduated college (1977) and decided to enter the insurance business on a different level.  As Cy’s agency flourished writing property and casualty insurance (auto, home, business), Mark began building a book of business in the life and disability field with the State Mutual Life Insurance company.  In 1985, he earned the coveted Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designation.  Mark stayed with State Mutual for 16 years, earning many company leadership awards, including induction into the “Hall of Fame” for averaging an application a week for 10 consecutive years.

By 1992, with Cy’s health failing and Mark’s life insurance agency about to relocate, it was decided that Mark would go to Cy’s agency in Newton, bring his book of business to Smoller Insurance and begin the process of both taking on more of the workload and familiarizing himself with Cy’s clients.  The latter was easy.  The transition was smooth and seamless. Cy’s way was always “family”.  The people doing business with him were never “customers.”  They were clients, and often friends.  It was most certainly then, and continues to this day, a relationship based agency.

In November of 1998,  Cy passed away after a 25 year battle with heart problems. The baton had been passed and Mark ran the agency solo for the next 10 years.  Cy’s goodwill, along with his example of good business practices and community service lead to significant agency growth.

In 2007, Mark’s son Billy graduated UMass with a degree from its prestigious School of Management. After 16 months in the banking industry, Billy felt that his skills were better served joining Mark at Smoller Insurance and taking the agency to yet another level.

In an era where managed automobile competition was said to be a detriment to anyone coming into the business, Billy saw it is a great opportunity.  While many agencies were experiencing a decline in production due to reduced auto (and homeowner’s) premiums and customers shopping, the Smoller Agency experienced unprecedented growth.  The combination of having competitive carriers, Mark’s expertise and Billy’s dogged pursuit of new business, resulted in “off the charts” results, both in terms of premium written and new business.

In Cy’s memory, our goal is to continue to provide complete, round the clock service to our clients…as well as give back to our community.

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1 Comment

  1. Reply by Nancy Goldstein Plympton January 12, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    Great job on the website. Reading “Our Story” brought back many wonderful memories my beloved uncle. Just the other day I came across one of the many manually-typed invoices I received over the years, always signed, “Love, Uncle Schmimmy”. He would be so proud of how you have grown the business, and kept it personal at the same time!

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