Our History

A Tradition of Safety

For more than 100 years, AF Group has been an insurance industry leader. Through our brands, we proudly carry a tradition of achieving the best outcomes for our customers and excellent value for our agents.

We invite you to learn more about how our history has shaped this success.



Public Act 10 allows for the creation of a state accident fund in the Treasury (under the supervision of the Commissioner of Insurance) to provide stable sources of insurance coverage while instilling confidence in employers. Michigan becomes the second state to adopt the state fund approach at that time.

Handwritten ledger of some of the first policies written by Accident Fund.


Control of Accident Fund is transferred to the State Administration Board.

The Hollister building in Lansing, Michigan, home of AF Group during the 1920s.


Michigan’s first Civil Service Act is passed. The attorney general issues an opinion stating that Accident Fund employees are state employees and subject to civil service jurisdiction.

The Ottawa Street Station, future home of AF Group, under construction in the 1930s. Prior to headquartering AF Group, it provided electricity and steam to the citizens of Lansing.


Attorney General John R. Dethmers holds that Accident Fund is not a state agency, its employees are not state employees, and its assets and liabilities are not the responsibility of the state.

Knapp's in downtown Lansing, showcasing the growth of Lansing in the 1940s.


Michigan Attorney General Frank Kelley rules that the Michigan State Accident Fund is a state agency and its employees are within the classified state civil service.


In 1987, Accident Fund constructs a new 10-story corporate headquarters building adjacent to the 232 S. Capitol Avenue office it acquired in 1950. The two are connected by a five-story glass atrium. In 1988, the State Court of Appeals rules that the Accident Fund is, in fact, a state agency.

Construction of AF Group's 10-story corporate headquarters in Lansing.


State assumes management control of Accident Fund and classifies its employees in the civil service system. Accident Fund becomes an agency of the Department of Commerce.

The completed headquarters where AF Group stayed until 2011.


Gov. John Engler signs legislation authorizing the privatization of Accident Fund. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan bids $291 million and wins the right to buy.

Former Michigan Governors James Blanchard and John Engler.


Supreme Court affirms Michigan’s right to the proceeds of the sale, and it’s finalized just two days before the Dec. 31 deadline.

The chambers of Michigan's Supreme Court.


The new Accident Fund Company, a subsidiary of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, begins operations. This same year, the first contract between the company and the United Auto Workers is negotiated and signed.


Accident Fund Company earns its first “A-“ (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best.

AM Best Financial Strength Rating A- Excellent.


Accident Fund pays Blue Cross its first dividend of $100 million and earns a full “A” (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best.


Accident Fund Company becomes Accident Fund Insurance Company of America.

Accident Fund Insurance Company of America.


Elizabeth R. Haar is named president and CEO of Accident Fund.

Elizabeth R. Haar.


Accident Fund purchases Wisconsin-based monoline workers’ compensation insurer United Heartland.

United Heartland logo.


Accident Fund signs agreement to purchase California-based monoline workers’ compensation insurer CompWest Insurance.

CompWest logo.


Accident Fund Holdings, Inc. is established, with Elizabeth R. Haar as president and CEO. Mike Britt is named president of Accident Fund Companies.

Mike Britt.


Steve Cooper is named president of United Heartland.

Steve Cooper.


Accident Fund, United Heartland, and CompWest are named as “Best Place to Work in Insurance” by Business Insurance magazine. Our companies have continually ranked high on this list every year since first being named.


Third Coast Underwriters (3CU) brand was established to offer workers’ compensation insurance to underserved markets.

Third Coast Underwriters.


Accident Fund Holdings develops Medical Center of Excellence team and launches Care Analytics®, an innovative program that helps to identify local physicians who understand work-related injuries and who provide superior care to get injured employees back to work.


Accident Fund licensed to write workers’ compensation insurance in all 50 states.

Map of the United States highlighting AF Group brands' ability to write workers' compensation in all 50 states.


Accident Fund moves its national headquarters to historic Ottawa Street Power Station in Lansing.

Image of AF Group headquarters in Lansing, Michigan.


Bryan Bogardus named president of CompWest Insurance.

Photo of Bryan Bogardus.


Accident Fund celebrates its 100th year in business.

Accident Fund Insurance Company of America Celebrating 100 Years.


Accident Fund Holdings continues to prove itself as a leader on issues impacting the workers’ compensation industry following the August 10 publication of a study in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (JOEM), co-authored with experts from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, which finds that the use of opioid medications, particularly long-acting opioid medications, is an independent risk factor for the development of catastrophic claims.


Accident Fund Holdings creates Certified Authority on Workers’ Compensation in partnership with Olivet College.

Certified Authority on Workers' Compensation.


Accident Fund Holdings experts testify before Food and Drug Administration (FDA) panel about workers’ compensation opioid research featured in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.


Accident Fund Holdings is granted first official U.S. patent, which protects our intellectual property for evaluating provider performance to optimize medical outcomes on claims (Care Analytics®).


Accident Fund launches AFXpress in South Carolina.

AFXpress logo.


Accident Fund Holdings, in partnership with researchers from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, published a study in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine that linked physician dispensing of narcotics to poor outcomes in workers’ compensation claims.


Accident Fund Holdings launches Risk Management Services, which provides loss-sensitive solutions for workers’ compensation customers.


Accident Fund Holdings becomes a $1 billion company.


Accident Fund Holdings becomes AF Group, preparing for continued growth and diversification.


Lisa Corless named president.

Photo of Lisa Corless.


Bryan Bogardus named executive vice president and chief operating officer.

Photo of Bryan Bogardus.


AF Group launches AF Specialty, a new brand focused on providing captive solutions.

AF Specialty.


Al Gileczek named president of Accident Fund and CompWest.

Photo of Al Gileczek.


AF Group launches Fundamental Underwriters, a new brand focused on commercial trucking.

Fundamental Underwriters logo.


Steve Cooper named president Third Coast Underwriters.

Photo of Steven Cooper.