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Markel Specialty, one of Markel Corporation's four insurance divisions, has partnered with the Nevada Independent Insurance Agents and released their annual Tom Foerster Memorial Scholarship. Named after the late Tom Foerster, The Tom Foerster Memorial Scholarship Fund was established to support Nevada's insurance industry by providing funding to agents and their families for advanced education. As an Underwriter, Foerster serviced markets in various states; however, the relationships he made while managing Nevada helped shape the legacy Markel Specialty shares with Nevada's independent insurance agents today. The scholarship is awarded each year to deserving NIIA members or family members looking to further their academic education or obtain a higher designation. 

Please review all materials regarding the Tom Foerster Memorial Scholarship Fund. This scholarship is available to two different types of applicants:

1. NIIA members and their family members
2. Employees of an NIIA member agency

The scholarship can be used for higher education, and/or obtaining a professional designation in insurance.

Terms for payment of the scholarship will be worked out with the recipient(s).

You cannot be awarded the scholarship if you do not submit your application.  Deadline is May 24, 2024

click here for Application

Flyer to share with others.

Scholarship will be awarded at the NIIA Annual Installation Dinner June 26, 2024.

Markel scholarship 2022.jpgCongratulations to Jackson Fleischer, 2023 Tom Foerster Memorial Scholarship Recipient.

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Congratulations! 2022 Scholarship Recipient Cusick:

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Colin Cusick was awarded theTom Foerster Scholarship by Tom Tyrell, Andrea Davis, and  Rob Jewell of Markel Specialty at the NIIA Annual State Convention at the Green Valley Ranch Resort Spa Casino. June 14, 2022.


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Congratulations! 2020 Scholarship Recipient has been announced:

Being named the 2020 Tom Foerster Memorial Scholarship recipient is a great honor, thank you Markel Specialty and the Nevada Independent Insurance Agents for offering this opportunity.   While I have a ways to go to complete my International Business degree from UNLV given that I have to work towards it a couple of classes a semester, the receipt of these funds will allow me to take on additional classes to meet my perspective graduation date.  I am driven to cross that finish line because the benefits are long lasting and generational.  It is my greatest hope that my daughters see me working towards my degree and are motivated in even some small way to higher education themselves.   I have worked in the insurance industry for close to 15 years and have found a career am passionate about.  I owe many thanks to the principals of Cragin & Pike, Inc. for their incredible support.    The soft skills I am picking up along the way are helping me become well rounded, understanding, and flexible which translate to being a better employee and advocate for our clients.

A heartfelt, thank you!

Rena Casprowitz

Bond Account Manager

Cragin & Pike

Testimonial from past scholarship recipients.

During my Sophomore year of college, I was honored to receive the Tom Forester Memorial Scholarship.  This scholarship significantly impacted many aspects of my life including my financial ability to pay for my tuition at UNLV; my ability to refocus my attentions to my studies (as being a math major can be an arduous task); and the enhancement of my social skills through involvement in school programs and clubs.

All of these factors have attributed to my determination in finishing my degree and becoming an actuary.  

Thank you to the Tom Forster Memorial Scholarship and the team at Markel for providing me with the opportunity to focus on school, investing in my education and bettering myself.

Rita Assad



During my Sophomore year of college, I was honored to receive the Tom Forester Memorial Scholarship, which significantly helped me pay for my tuition at the College of Southern Nevada (CSN).  This scholarship had a significant impact on my education overall.  With less of a financial burden, I was able to put a higher level of focus and concentration into my education. This scholarship allowed me to be a more enthusiastic student, which resulted in making the Dean's List for each of my remaining semesters at CSN, even gradating with High Honors in Business Administration. 

The Tom Forester Memorial Scholarship furthered me along in my professional career as well.  After graduating with my degree from CSN, I became a licensed Property & Casualty Insurance Agent in the state of Nevada.  I am more than appreciative for FirstComp's investment in my education, which has helped more than words can explain.


Karli Rae Miller