Business

John Ritenour on the Transition from Insurance Executive to Philanthropist

John Ritenour has worked in the insurance industry for his entire professional career. Having been born and raised in Pennsylvania, Ritenour and his wife, Valli, started their own insurance agency in the mid-1980s. They made this decision after John experienced quick success in his first job as an insurance agent.

The Ritenour family decided to leave Pennsylvania for Florida in the late 1980s. John and Valli launched the Insurance Office of Florida, the precursor to the Insurance Office of America, shortly after they arrived. After leading the company as its CEO for 30 years, John Ritenour handed the reins to his son, Heath Ritenour, in 2018. Valli Ritenour retired around the same time, and the couple having more free time has led to them becoming even more involved in philanthropic efforts.

IOA Launches Its Own Charitable Foundation in 2008

After years of sponsoring local community events like 5K runs, John Ritenour created a charitable foundation under the name of IOA 13 years ago. Heath Ritenour took over as Chairman of the IOA Foundation along with assuming the role of CEO when John Ritenour retired. However, John and Valli remain active in planning and carrying out charitable events. According to IOA’s website, the charitable foundation is involved with the following:

  • Animal welfare
  • Children’s education, health, and wellness
  • Entrepreneurship mentoring
  • Financial empowerment and literacy

Both John and Valli come from humble beginnings, something that still inspires them to make a difference to this day. John Ritenour feels especially passionate about encouraging and mentoring the next generation of entrepreneurs. He states that he often wished he had access to such a relationship as a child, but his parents and most people he knew were too exhausted from working in the steel mills to provide much emotional support.

John Ritenour felt troubled that his parents worked so hard for little pay and became determined to make a better life for himself and his future family. He feels good about paying tribute to them while also serving as an example for young people to follow. Ritenour likes to tell the kids he mentors about his own story to demonstrate that anything is possible with hard work and determination.

John Ritenour Happily Embraces His Next Phase of Life

Running a successful insurance agency that operates in multiple states has taken most of John and Valli’s attention over the past 30 years. Now that both have retired, they enjoy playing an even larger role in the IOA Charitable Foundation. Without the responsibility of being Chairman, John Ritenour has more time to contribute to organizing events such as the IOA Golf Classic and Championship.

After having raised their own family and operating a successful business for 30 years, John and Valli cherish their new role as grandparents. While their son keeps the family business moving forward, they spend their time making the world a better place for their community and their youngest family members.

 

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