(The text below is the presentation delivered by General Agent John Stakowicz at the Indiana State Convention)
Reverend Fathers, worthy State Officers, members, guests and wives, I would like to thank the State officers for allowing us to present the Joseph H Gawrys “Life Crusader” award now as an annual award. Joe Gawrys was a Field Agent and General agent for the Knights of Columbus here in Indiana from August, 1970 until his retirement on June 30th, 1988. In memory of his passing, we decided to honor him, naming this award after him. After Joe’s retirement, he did not sit idle, he continued his volunteer work with the Indiana Knights of Columbus until his passing in 2014.
The qualifications to earn this award are simple but by no means easy. To qualify, the agent has to be the leading producer in life insurance in the State of Indiana and also qualify for the Knights of Columbus incentive award trip which last year was to Mexico and a pilgrimage to Our Lady of Guadalupe. To qualify for the incentive trip, an agent has to be a leader in life insurance sales for the company, write a certain amount of life insurance applications of which one-fourth of those must be on members who do not currently have life insurance with the Knights of Columbus (Associate to Insurance members) which is needed for your councils to earn the prestigious Star Council award. He must write a certain amount of Long Term Care and Disability insurance, have obtained his professional designation of Fraternal Insurance Counselor, and have a very high persistency, meaning that most of his sales stay on the books!
The recipient of this award started with the Knights of Columbus in September, 2006 and he has made every incentive award trip since. He is a Supreme Knight Qualifier for 7 consecutive years, meaning he is in the top 10% of the company and in fact was the #90th field agent in the order out of 1,400 field agents in 2016. He is a MDRT member meaning he is in the top 1% of all insurance agents in the world also for 7 years. He is extremely well liked by his councils and members he serves. He is the membership chairman for his council #1043 in Elkhart and unofficially in all his councils he represents which are #4263 in Granger, #11574 in Bristol and #13962 in LaGrange. He has brought in over 180 members personally in all of the councils he serves. I am very proud to present this award, for the third year in a row, to my son, Phillip Stackowicz.
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