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A long, long time ago, on a corner of Fourth and Elm, a young man got into the insurance business…
That’s how the story begins. But first, a man named Guy Welch started an insurance, real estate and accounting business in 1954 at 810 N. Fourth St. In 1959, newlyweds Dick and Nancy Lingenfelter moved to town. Dick worked for Caterpillar in Mossville in the drafting and HR departments. Nancy had been working for an insurance agency as their bookkeeper. That same year, Dick and Nancy began working for Guy, also a Cat man, and ran the insurance business for him. In 1972 Dick and Nancy made the break from Caterpillar and Welch Insurance became the Lingenfelter Insurance Agency.
Since it’s beginning, Lingenfelter Insurance and Dick and Nancy have focused on service, both in their business, community and family. The 1960’s saw Dick as one of the founder’s of the Chillicothe Bible Church. He was a founder of the Chillicothe YMCA (yep, there was one once). He was a charter member of the Optimist Club. Dick is a past president of the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce, member of the Chillicothe Park board, past president and treasurer of Peoria Area Youth For Christ (the parent organization of the IVC Campus Life club), and member of too many other civic boards and organizations to list. The resume is quite full. He and Nancy haven’t done what they’ve done for praise, rather it was their calling. Nancy is still the bookkeeper for the agency and she, like Dick is toying with the idea of semi-retirement after 60 plus years. Nancy is currently in her 64th year as a bookkeeper and 38th year as the family babysitter. It is interesting to note that there has been a Lingenfelter child, grandchild, or great-grandchild in an IVC school district school every year since 1965 except, 1986.
Lingenfelter Insurance is a property and casualty insurance agency specializing in church insurance, but not limited to churches. Personal and other light commercial products are available. During the decades Lingenfelter Insurance acquired five other independent insurance agencies including Chillicothe’s Jim Whalen Insurance and the Bob Smith Agency. Despite the restrictions of 2020, they still try to make insurance as personal as it can be with face to face connection preferred over digital options. Very retro.
It is definitely a family business when you consider the staff. Dick and Nancy’s oldest daughter, Becci, began working for her folks in her mid-teens and today boasts 46 years of insurance experience. Son Rick has been in the agency since 1987. Rick’s son Josh joined the agency in 2019 after completing his Actuarial Science degree (fancy insurance math) at the University of Illinois. Dick and Nancy have one other daughter, Tami Rhodenbaugh of Dover, Delaware, 7 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
The legacy of serving others is at the core of Lingenfelter Insurance and the Lingenfelter family. The tradition of serving remains a constant with the business and family. Becci has devoted much of her time and energy to the youth of Chillicothe through AWANA at Chillicothe Bible Church and local youth sports. Rick and his wife Pam (former teacher at Mossville Grade School) have long supported YFC and served in their church. Rick currently serves on the Chillicothe Development Company and Chillicothe Foundation boards, the
Chillicothe Police Commission and is on the St Jude Runners Association board. Rick and Pam helped create the incredibly successful Chillicothe St Jude Run team, a group that has raised millions of dollars for kids with cancer. Josh has been a part of St Jude Runs since it all started and is a volunteer leader in the IVC Campus Life club.
HR 2020 Changes
Missed our Chamber Luncheon?
Don't worry watch this video to learn about the changes in 2020 for small businesses.