Don Smith, CopperPoint Insurance Companies

Small Business: Economic Foundation
from Don Smith

Don-Smith-2016Small business is widely recognized nationally as the foundational building block of our economy. In Arizona, especially, this segment is healthy and thriving; our state has been named one of the best for entrepreneurialism.

CopperPoint Insurance Companies, renamed and reorganized from the former SCF Arizona, was the state’s dedicated workers’ compensation insurance resource, and, as such, was uniquely positioned to work with and assist all businesses throughout Arizona. With its 90-year history of providing workers compensation coverage, CopperPoint is uniquely positioned to support business owners across Arizona and beyond. In addition to serving them through select agents and with our value-added safety resources, we’ve made it a priority to partner with business and community leaders to help create a strong economy and vibrant culture for all Arizonans. That’s why, as I retire, I’m so pleased that Marc Schmittlein has recently joined CopperPoint as my successor.

Marc’s 30-plus years in the industry is steeped in small business. He understands the pressure business owners face and knows how to team with independent agents to provide top-notch commercial and workers compensation insurance. Most of all, he knows that solid relationships are at the heart of every successful business function, be it marketing, finance or technology.

This issue’s cover story taps into the expertise of other business leaders in our community. In Business Magazine builds its content around what it identifies as core business operations of companies in any industry — leadership and management, sales, human resources, technology, marketing and communication, and finance — and, for this singularly focused article, has sought out those known for their proficiency in these fields to share tips for success.

While debate over marijuana continues, with contention over both legalizing its use and the economic impact of the industry, the Arizona Department of Health Services has announced it is opening applications for medical marijuana dispensary licenses this summer. There are legal issues unique to this situation, and, for the Legal article, a local attorney addresses “what the commercial real estate community needs to know” regarding leasing agreements between landlords and potential dispensary tenants.

This July issue also offers the 2016/2017 edition of the Top 50 Small Business Resources Guide & Industry Leaders, developed in cooperation with Local First Arizona, and then closes with a Roundtable feature that challenges companies to consider the business benefits of socially responsible practices.

I’m pleased to help bring you this July issue of In Business Magazine, reprising the role of Guest Editor that I played in the publication’s inaugural issue more than five years ago.

Sincerely,

Don Smith
President and CEO (ret.)
CopperPoint Insurance Companies

Don Smith, former president and CEO of CopperPoint Insurance Companies, is a University of Notre Dame graduate and holds a Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter designation as well as a law degree. He is active in community service and among Arizona business chambers, councils and leadership groups. Smith has been recognized by Phoenix Business Journal as a Most Admired CEO, by the Arizona Chamber as a Transformational Leader, and by Greater Phoenix Economic Council as a distinguished service award recipient. He heads the advisory board of the Center for the Future of Arizona think tank. 

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