Agency was founded by Arthur D. Dern on June 28, 1928 with
our first insurance company appointment to the Capital Fire
Insurance Company. Mr. Dern was promoted to be the Vice President
of the Bank of Pinole, Rodeo Branch, by Edward Downer, Sr.,
Founder of the Mechanics Bank as we know it today. In fulfilling
his banking duties, Mr. Dern needed to collateralize the banks
loans. Fire Insurance policies were written for his good customers
and their businesses. Hence, this was the start of a very
successful, and soon to be, well respected Insurance Agency
serving our Community.
Mr. Dern is also credited with foiling a bank robbery by
single handedly apprehending the bank robber carrying a little
gat on July 3, 1931. He gave chase on the running boards of
a car driven by two girls in a roadster out front of the bank
to the neighboring town of Tormey. Click on the highlighted
area for a full review of the news article as printed in the
City News" on April 14, 1945. [click here]
Mr. Dern's passing in 1956, his son-in-law, Vernon A. Fereria,
took the reins to merely continue financial support for Mrs.
Dern. Insurance was no stranger to Vern, as his father was
previously an appointed Agent for the Capital Fire Insurance
Company of California in 1915. Although Vern's passion was
playing and teaching piano, he took his new venture serious
and excelled in securing excellent insurance coverage for
his clients. Vern's warmth and good nature, trustworthiness,
and many good deeds for people in the community, earned him
the confidence of the people and their successor generations
who make up many of the good clients of our Agency today.
In 1966, Vern purchased an established insurance agency
from the long time Crockett delicatessen and tavern owner,
and entrepreneur, Donato "Toots" Pezzuto. Then in
1970, retired Banker, George Dutra, of the First Western Bank
of Pinole, sold his business to Vern. (Mr. Dutra is also referred
to in the Bank's news article of bank robberies on May 9,
1933 above.) This was the transitioning mark that culminated
with the official opening of our Store front office in the
Park View Plaza and evidence of our commitment to the “Tri-City”
In 1976, Vern asked his grandson, Terry Tigh, to join the
Agency. “Just give it a year and you’ll find great
enjoyment working with the good people that make up our Agency,”
said Vern. Terry often references Vern's great words of Wisdom!
1978 brought the association of Elliot Steinberg to the
Agency with the purchase of his insurance business. And then
in 1982, the culmination of the Richard Andersen Real Estate
Insurance Agency was completed.
In 1986, the Agency passed to the families fourth generation,
Terry L. Tigh. Terry is the grandson and great grandson of
his predecessors, and was groomed by Vern for the purpose
of continuing a long family tradition of "taking care
of the community’s insurance needs." Terry, currently
embarking on his 37th year with the Agency, worked hand in
hand with Vern on a daily basis, learning a great work ethic.
Terry often quotes from his grandfather: "We
must always remember what it took to attract our good clients...
Dedication to excellent service, and offering a superior product."
recently, and after thirty-nine years in the insurance business,
Morris Benezra has joined forces with the A.D. Dern Insurance
Agency, Inc. and Terry Tigh. For most of you this is old news
as our two agencies have worked closely together to create
a familiarity of Morris' accounts over the past twelve years.
Adding the many years of experience of Morris Benezra solidifies
our Agency's continued effort to provide both a knowledgeable
and caring staff to handle your insurance needs. In addition
to insurance, today Morris continues to carry out his most
enjoyable work of “Art on the Canvas”. A great
many of his works can be found on display at the Pinole Senior
Center, as well as our revered portrait of A.D. Dern in our
office shown above.
Our ties to the many good people of our community are great
and many since 1928. The greatest compliment that our Agency
receives today, are the many referrals received from our existing
good clients, as well as Real Estate Professionals, Mortgage
Brokers, and Title Insurance Officers within the greater Bay
The Agency has been through some interesting times. We’ve
seen transitions in insurance marketing, as well as soft and
hard markets over the years. The "Year of the Insurance
Drought - 1986", major Disasters of the 20th Century
such as the Loma Preita & Northridge Quakes, the Oakland
Hills and Southern California Fires, as well as numerous hurricanes,
the Homeowners Insurance Dilemma in 1994, and then the rising
rates and shrinking markets due to the terrorist attacks in
2001, have all been endured by our Agency with great success.
When most agencies had no markets, we’ve been there
providing insurance protection with excellent insurance companies
the entire time.
Today we are an Independent Insurance Agency, marketing all
types of insurance – Property and Casualty, Life, and
Accident and Health. Our current staff consists of Elizabeth
Cardoza, Office Manager and Licensed Agent, and Terry L. Tigh, Insurance Broker / Owner.
We represent many major insurance companies in which we place
business that are stable, progressive, and reliable insurance
companies. At present, we service both commercial lines and
personal lines customers. We continue to monitor our many
companies, and continue to add to our base of good solid companies.
These companies agree to provide our clients with sound protection,
backed by service. As representatives of our clients,
we must make certain that they do just that. In turn,
we enjoy the good will of the many good people of our community.
From the beginning,
our business has been conducted in a professional manner.
This is necessary to remain in business; therefore, our employees
are expected to conduct themselves likewise. In order to achieve and maintain a professional
status, our employees further their knowledge with educational
courses, as well as fulfilling the State of California's Continuing
Education License requirements.
Today, our business is fully automated with the most up to
date computer equipment and technology available. We
provide our clients with computer generated quotes and information
to support their insurance needs at home and at their businesses.
We look forward to meeting your insurance needs. We've
been here helping You, Since 1928!