By Camille Williams
The Cincinnati Herald
Christopher Owens is helping a Black-owned, Cleveland-based insurance firm find its home in Cincinnati.
Owens, is a sales associate for Taylor Oswald, which is a partner organization of Oswald Companies, and is also the largest Black-owned insurance firm in Ohio. Founded by current CEO Eddie Taylor Jr., Taylor Oswald serves clients with a global view of risk in areas of property and casualty, employee benefits and health management, personal insurance management, retirement plan services and life insurance.
Raised in Cincinnati, Owens attended Summit Country Day. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Miami University and his Master of Business Administration from Xavier University with a concentration in marketing. Owens has worked as a business banking specialist at Huntington Bank, a logistics account executive at Total Quality Logistics and a district small business specialist at US Bank.
Most recently, Owens worked as senior membership development in the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber for five years. But when the offer to be a sales associate for an African American-owned company came along, Owens jumped back into the for-profit industry with Taylor Oswald.
“That kind of opportunity doesn’t just come around the corner,” Owens said. “To help build a Black business here in Cincinnati is not just a great chance, but a great opportunity.”
For the last five months, Owens has been seeking clients, networking and marketing Taylor Oswald. He says the most challenging part of the job is building up clientele and brand recognition from scratch.
“It’s been me getting out into the community,” he said. “It’s talking to companies that I’ve known in the past, as well as just going to events and just talking about Taylor Oswald.”
To help bring local awareness to Taylor Oswald, an event will be held: Creating Strong and Diverse Organizations through Strategic Risk Management: Welcome Taylor Oswald, on Sept. 17, at 4 p.m., at the Hilton Garden Inn Cincinnati Midtown, 45207. CEO Eddie Taylor and other representatives will share the company’s origin story as well as ambitions in Cincinnati.
Owens says that the support of Taylor Oswald both in Cleveland and Cincinnati has been refreshing.
“The most rewarding part of my job is to have two companies that have your back, that are giving you any type of resource, thought leadership and mentorship to ensure that you are going to be successful,” he said.
For Owens, networking with other professionals has provided the most important tool in his career. Yet he is also involved in the community. He serves on the boards for Cincinnati Area Senior Services, Santa Maria Community Services, Know Theatre of Cincinnati in Over-the-Rhine and the Cincinnati Chamber Alumni Network committee. He is also a trivia host for Last Call Trivia.
Whether it’s working in insurance or in the community, Owens defines success based on the positive impact of his work.
“For being in sales, any time you can help an individual or a company through what you are providing to that person or entity and it makes a positive impact, that to me is successful,” he said.