We Welcome Commercial Lines Account Manager, Amber Anderson To Our Team

We are pleased to introduce EPB&B’s newest team member, Commercial Lines Account Manager Amber Anderson.  With two decades in the insurance industry, Amber brings knowledge and experience with her and an appreciation for the business and the clients she serves making her a great fit at EPB&B.  We asked Amber to share a little about her experience, career goals, and life in the great outdoors. 

Tell us a little about your background in the Insurance Industry? I took my first Account Manager position 22 years ago and never expected it to become a life-long career. I began as a Personal Lines Account Manager in 2001 and assisted with Farm and Agribusiness in Eastern Washington. I loved the challenge of Agribusiness. Being as it is a combination of both personal and commercial insurance, it kept me on my toes! Once I’d experienced a taste of the commercial side, I knew that’s where I wanted to be. 

What is it that you like about working in the industry? I was born to be a helper, a listener, and a problem solver. I didn’t grow up thinking, “I’m going into insurance when I grow up!” However, I’ve learned that this industry is really about relationships with people, listening to their needs, and finding solutions that fit their individual situations. I love being that helper, listener, and problem solver I was born to be. Each day presents a new puzzle to solve and new challenges that help me grow as a professional. It all strengthens my ability to assist my clients.

 Why have you chosen EPB&B as the next stop for you on your career path? When I met the people here at EPB&B, I immediately knew this was where I wanted to be. The culture, dedication to being the best they can be, the support of each other, and the quality of service provided to the clients were impressive and inspiring. I wanted to contribute and collaborate in this supportive environment. I knew I’d made a great decision on my first day in the office.

Anything you would like to share that will help others get to know you a little bit better? I’ve lived in the Pacific NW for all but three years of my life and don’t think there’s a more beautiful place to live. I grew up a small-town girl surrounded by nature and am still one at heart. If there’s an activity outdoors, I’m all about it. Except hiking. Nope, can’t make me.  Pacific NW summers are the absolute best, so I squeeze as much fun into my weekends as possible (before the rain traps us indoors for nine months!) I love camping, kayaking, wine tasting, and bonfires with friends I also have a passion for travel. I love experiencing other cultures and cuisines and making new friends in the places I visit.

Welcome To The Team Amber.


Meet EPB&B’s Newest Team Member, Amanda McMillen.

We are pleased to introduce EPB&B’s newest team member, Producer, Amanda McMillen.  Bringing a wealth of knowledge and experience in the insurance industry, we are excited to have Amanda as part of the team.  Here is a little bit more about Amanda McMilllen: 

  1. What is your background in the Insurance Industry?  Holy cow! I just realized I’ve been in insurance for 17 years now! Good grief time really does fly when you are having fun. I hold a property and casualty insurance license and I have specialized in insuring commercial real estate for the bulk of my career.  My process includes the development of a proactive risk management program to address the risks and drive down the costs associated.  I do more than just procure an insurance policy; I offer a plan and a strategy that protects my client’s most important interests.  
  1. What is it that you like about working in the industry?  The people.  Making connections and building relationships truly feeds my soul.  I also love the education piece of my job.  Insurance can be confusing and scary and I find it incredibly fulfilling when I can empower my clients through education.  
  1. What makes EPB&B the next stop for you on your career path? I was looking for a home and within the first 5 minutes of my interview at EPB&B I knew that I had finally found it.
  1. Anything you would like to share that will help others get to know you a little bit better?  I am an Oregon native, and I have a BS degree from OSU, GO BEAVS!  I love animals and have spent years volunteering for various animal rescue organizations.  I love to laugh, and I can be just a hair sarcastic from time to time!

Welcome to the team Amanda.


Hot Weather Alert: Four Ways To Keep Your Dog Safe In The Heat 

The forecast says it is about to heat up, and it is imperative to take safety precautions for yourselves and your loved ones, including your furry friends.  While long walks, frisbee fetching  and dog park visits are part of summer fun, adjustments must be made to keep your dog safe and healthy when the temperature heats up.  

  1. Please Leave Your Pet at Home.  It is tempting to make a quick run to the store after an outing to the dog park, but even five minutes in a warm car can be dangerous to your pet.  Even when it is  70 degrees outside, the interior of a car can reach over 100 degrees within minutes, even with the windows rolled down.  Please don’t do it.  Protect your pet and others by knowing What to do when you see a  dog in a hot car.
  2.  Walk Early and Late:  Plan to take your dog for a walk early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid the hottest part of the day.  Check hard surfaces such as asphalt.  If it is too hot for your feet, it is too hot for their paws.  Choose shady routes and grassy areas for walks and play. 
  3. Drink Up.  Just like humans, water is critical for the health of a dog.  Especially in hot weather.  Make sure to keep Fido’s water bowl full at all times, and when out and about, bring your own water and a collapsable bowl for frequent breaks along the way. 
  4. Don’t Forget the SPF.  Yes, some dogs need sunscreen too. Dogs with thin hair and exposed skin are prone to sunburn.  So after you lather up your own body, keep Rover protected too with his own sunscreen.

 Heat-related illness can happen before you know it.  Keep yourself safe so you can keep your furry friend healthy and happy too. 

If the ground is too hot for your feet, it is too hot for their paws. Stick to grassy, shaded areas on hot days.

EPB&B Supports Local Non-Profit, Breast Friends at Annual Golf Tournament

For the second consecutive, Elliott, Powell, Baden, and Baker is pleased to be a hole sponsor for the 14th Annual Breast Friends golf tournament at Stone Creek Golf Club – Oregon City, OR

Started in 2000 by two breast cancer survivors, the mission of Breast Friends is to ensure no woman goes through a cancer diagnosis alone. 

EPB&B  first discovered Breast Friends in 2021 after a close friend of EPB&B Sales Manager Linda Rentfrow was diagnosed with breast cancer. 

“She was in need of support from a place of true empathy,” says Linda, ”and she certainly found it in Breast Friends.” 

 Since partnering with the organization, EPB&B has not only been a sponsor of their annual golf tournament, Breast Friends was made the recipient of EPB&B’s 2021 Annual Holiday Fundraiser, raising over $10,000 for their cause. 

A beautiful day supporting a wonderful cause is a pretty good way to start the week.


Three Tactics For Effectively Communicating With Younger Employees

If you are a manager employing kids home for the summer, or recent college graduates entering the workforce, you may be experiencing a communication gap.  The first generation to be fully raised in an era of electronics, and social media has changed how young people ages 16-25 communicate. Effectively learning how to communicate with your younger employees is essential not only for the efficiency of your business but also workplace safety.   Here are three tips to help improve communication with younger workers:

  1.  Touch Base Daily.  Younger people desire a lot of feedback on how they are doing.  For best results forget calling them into your office, instead, make it make informal and spontaneous interaction.
  2. Face-to-Face.  Yes, they always seem to have their face in their phone and the younger generation is proficient at communicating through IM’s and texts. Studies however, have shown that young people lack confidence in their writing skills due to the era of emojis and slang, and feel more confident presenting a professional front to their managers when talking face to face. 
  3. Use Positive Feedback. Set disciplinary action aside when dealing with the younger crowd.  Positive feedback has been shown to process in the pre-frontal cortex where problem-solving skills are formed.  Using positive feedback is a great opportunity to help a younger worker grow and learn. 

Now more than ever the workplace is multigenerational, each age group requiring different communication strategies.  As a Manager, be flexible and creative in your communication styles and together you will make a great team. 

Young workers are more likely to respect a manager who shows a genuine interest in their safety and well being.


Five Ways To Make The Most of Shopping Your Local Farmers Market

Fresh Berries, crisp veggies, and fragrant bouquets, yep, Northwest farmer’s markets are in full swing.  Grab your shopping bag and follow these tips to make the most of your day at the market. 

  • Shop Early For the Best Selection.  The closer you show up to opening time, the better your selection of prime options will be.  Take the time to browse the different vendors and compare prices and product quality.
  • Show Late For Savings.  Many farmers would rather sell that last crate of produce and a discounted price rather than haul them back home.  You may miss out on a variety of options but can save a few dollars in the end. 
  • Taste and Try.  What is often frowned upon at the grocery store is encouraged at the farmers market.   Many vendors hand out samples and encourage you to taste their bounty, so sample away.
  • Try Something New.  What is that purple orb or swirly green root?  It may look unfamiliar but taste delicious.  Farmers love to teach their customers about their crops and suggest the best way to cook them for the best experience. 
  • Stock Up.  Unlike supermarket produce which is often a week old before it even hits the shelves, farmers market produce is picked the day before.  This means your food will have a longer life expectancy, so take an extra bag and load up..

Farmer’s markets are a great way to eat healthily and support your local, Oregon, and Washington farmers markets.   Happy shopping.

EPB&B Producer, Derek Aldrich stops by to support valued insured, Stone Soup as he explores the farmers market in SW Portland.