By Marcia Lane
Photos by Brian Miller
ThompsonBaker Agency traces its beginnings back to 1925, when partners John Thompson and Harold Ryman opened a business insurance agency and real estate brokerage firm. The combination of the two types of businesses was common in smaller communities at that time. While the real estate portion was dropped in later years, Matt Baker says the 1925 date means his firm is “kind of the elder statesman” when it comes to the insurance business in St. Johns County.
These days the business is predominantly involved in personal, business and commercial property and casualty insurance. They also offer financial services and planning.
“Certainly, we want to continue to grow the business and we are growing our existing staff. We want to be growth-oriented and we also want to be civically involved. We have a long track record: American Cancer Society, local churches, Boy Scouts…we want to be good corporate citizens both professionally and personally with what we do in the community,” Baker said. Two partners have served terms as St.. Augustine mayor, others serve on the Flagler Hospital board. Two have chaired the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce.
While technological and regulatory changes have affected the industry, Baker sees that “a lot of people still prize relationships…. What we’re finding is a lot of people still like to know who they deal with, they like knowing they’re with a local business putting back into the community.”
After two hurricanes, he’s proud of St. Johns County and its people.
“It’s very nice to see people within the community really help each other and extend a helping hand. Not every community is characterized like this one in being helpful to one another during times of duress,” Baker said.
ThompsonBaker Agency • 61 Cordova Street • Visit Their Website • (904)824-1631