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Honest Brokers in the Protection Racket: The Hopewell Story

Forrest Bennett Jan 16, 2023 4:15:58 PM

Why I Founded Hopewell

I’m Forrest Bennett, and in 2021 I founded Hopewell Risk Advisors, an independent insurance brokerage. Starting this business is the most responsible way, but far from the only way, that I’ve interacted with the world of risk management.

I grew up in Bartlesville, OK, with two rowdy brothers and parents who gave us a lot of freedom to grow and learn – and we sure did, with most of those life lessons coming from us breaking things and hurting ourselves. 

Whether it was the windshield I cracked with a rock I threw intending to hit my older brother, or the teeth I chipped when I dragged our trampoline under my treehouse and jumped (a lot of fun before I got hurt), I learned that relatively small accidents can have costly consequences.

A Hard Life Lesson

My habit of paying as little as possible for insurance began when I turned 16 and was responsible for paying my own car insurance – a great lesson in personal responsibility, if only I had understood how little I was getting for my minimal premium. 

While at OU in 2009, my ‘96 Honda Accord was t-boned and I discovered that I didn’t have enough coverage for repairs to make financial sense. At that moment, I felt like the insurance industry was just a protection racket, where you pay somebody so you don’t get beat up, but you get beat up sometimes anyway.

I didn’t truly learn my lesson until 2016, though. While knocking on doors during my first campaign for the State Legislature in 2016, my ‘94 Toyota Avalon was stolen. I wasn’t making much money as a graduate student teaching assistant, so my coverage was still as bad as my premium was small, so I took the bus for a while to save up for a new car – and had a lot of time to think about getting better coverage once I could afford it.

An Insurance Agency On Your Side 

Most recently, in 2022, my childhood home caught fire. No one was home, thank goodness, but it was a total loss. Working through the claims process with my own parents gave me the chance to see that complicated, stressful experience in a more personal way. This experience, all of these experiences, helped shape me into the skeptical, consumer-focused insurance broker I am today. 

I know how impossible it can feel to get the coverage you need when your budget is tight, because I’ve been there. I know the sinking feeling of having subpar coverage when something happens, because I’ve been on the receiving end of that bad news. I’ve also seen the relief and peace-of-mind in the faces of insureds when, after an unexpected loss, they realize that money is one thing they won’t have to worry about. 

That is why I set out to build an agency that is in the consumers’ corner – honest brokers in the protection racket.

Want to get started working with me and my team? Reach out for your free insurance quote and consultation today. 

Forrest Bennet is the owner and founder of Hopewell Risk Advisors, an independent insurance agency writing personal lines of insurance and commercial policies for industries ranging from cannabis to restaurants. A born-and-raised Oklahoman, Forrest has been fighting to provide great insurance coverage since 2021. He considers Hopewell Risk Advisors “honest brokers in the protection racket.”