Walden Board Member Nominated for Women Who Impact San Diego

Governance Board Member, Arlene Lieberman, has been nominated for SD Metro Magazine’s Women Who Impact San Diego awards.

A principal at Barney & Barney, one of the nation’s largest and longest standing insurance brokerages, Arlene joined the firm in 1997 and through hard work and dedication was asked to join the ownership group in only five short years. Her success in a typically male dominated industry is nothing short of extraordinary.

As a practice group leader, Arlene is responsible for the management of 20 Barney & Barney associates. She is also responsible for the development and design of employee benefit packages for large national and international employer groups. As an expert on insurance legislation and regulations, she is an aggressive advocate on behalf of her clients. She works tirelessly to establish strategic short and long term objectives to help her clients control benefit costs and has even implemented numerous Consumer Driven models supported by Health and Productivity Wellness Programs to support her strategy.

At Barney & Barney, Arlene is consistently a top sales producer and usually exceeds annual new business and client retention goals. However, she views what she does as less of a sales pitch, and more of a learning experience. Her client consultations always aim to determine the best insurance options for their particular business and needs. She has the unique ability to take complex policies, procedures and issues and make them simple and easy to understand for her clients and their employees. This no-pressure, personal, consultative approach has resulted in her high client retention figures, with accounts returning year after year for her assistance on their business insurance needs.

Arlene is committed to giving back to the community and strives to incorporate volunteerism and charitable acts into her professional and personal life.

Arlene’s involvement with Walden Family Services, a private, San Diego-based non-profit that provides quality care to abused and neglected children, is especially inspiring. In 2008, Arlene attended a fundraiser for Walden and was impressed by the keynote speaker, a college student, Nayely, at Cal Poly Pomona who was a member of Walden’s Independent Futures Program for youth that have aged out of the foster system. The young girl spoke about her experience growing up as a foster child, the services made available to her through Walden and her dream to study abroad in Paris. Arlene stepped up to offer financial assistance to make her dream a reality.

With Arlene’s support, guidance and love, Nayely has been able accomplish more than she ever thought possible. She took her dream trip to Paris and emailed with Arlene throughout her stay. She also graduated with a bachelor’s degree in social work, earned her Masters in the same field, and has been inducted into the Peace Corp with the assignment to protect the rights of children in the Philippines. Most importantly, Arlene has supported Nayely throughout and the two have developed a mother-daughter bond that will last a lifetime. For Arlene, this experience was life changing. It inspired her to join Walden’s Governance Board and she now helps fundraiser and advocate for the 600+ foster children Walden serves annually.

Arlene’s community involvement doesn’t stop there. She is particularly passionate when it comes to promoting and supporting women in the workplace. Arlene helped to successfully launch a formal women’s initiative within her company, Barney & Barney, called B&B GROW (Growth in Relationships and Opportunities for Women). The program’s mission is to attract, retain, educate and support the women of Barney & Barney, while also giving them an outlet to give back to the community giving back to local charities serving women and children. GROW focuses on five key programs: keynote speaker series, mentoring, educational symposiums, social events and peer networking groups. These events, large and small, foster an environment of camaraderie and further reinforce the open lines of communication among all members of the Barney & Barney team. Fundraising events have included collecting housewares and gift cards to support emancipated foster teens, collecting jackets and toys to benefit the Community Resource Center and donating new sweat suits to the Center for Community Solutions to assist their Sexual Assault Response Team and victims of sexual assault.

Arlene also enjoys donating her time to the San Diego medical community. She has served as an advisory board member for the Women’s Health Symposium and an auxiliary committee member for the San Diego Burn institute’s Chief Gala. She was also the vice president of the education committee for the San Diego Association of Health Underwriters. Previously, Arlene held an internship position at Children’s Hospital where she participated in the inaugural group of interns and assisted with hospital rotations and other areas as needed. During the time of her internship she also played a major role in the Children’s Hospital’s Reach Program, an annual holiday event for children in need.

Most recently, Arlene has been active in Voices for Children and serves on the honoree committee for its annual fundraising event, Wine Women & Shoes. She is also on the honoree committee for Team Godfather, an organization that supports medical research for Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS).
Arlene has dedicated over 30 years to the insurance industry. She holds the distinguished designation of Registered Health Underwriter (RHU), which demonstrates her commitment to the employee benefits field. Arlene works hard and people notice. In 2007, she was a recipient of the San Diego Business Journal’s “Women Who Mean Business” award and in 2012 she was an honoree for San Diego Magazine’s “Women Who Move the City” award.

In 2009, in celebration of the Barney & Barney’s 100th year in California, firm owners and associates created the Barney & Barney Foundation. Because of Arlene’s exemplary leadership skills and community involvement she was selected to lead the Barney & Barney Foundation initiative. She was appointed as a member of the Barney & Barney Foundation’s Board of Directors and the Chairperson of the Barney & Barney Foundation’s annual “Rock the Foundation” concert fundraising event. The Barney & Barney Foundation is committed to giving back by providing for those in need, supporting youth, advancing the arts and protecting the environment. In the last four years, with Arlene’s considerable creative direction and commitment, the Foundation has granted over half a million dollars to over 40 deserving charities.

Arlene’s hard work, dedication and involvement are inspiring to her fellow principals and associates at Barney & Barney, Walden Family Services’ board and volunteers and the entire San Diego community.