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Roofing Contractor Continuously Violates Fall Protection Standards and Faces Nearly $400,000 in Fines

According to OSHA, a Maine-based roofing contractor has ignored numerous safety standards and exposed workers to significant fall risks for a number of years. OSHA cited the contractor—which has operated under the names Lessard Roofing & Siding and Lessard Brothers Construction—for safety violations at 11 different worksites between 2000 and 2011. However, the contractor failed to address the citations or pay any of the issued fines.

In 2011—after Lessard initially failed to address the OSHA citations—the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the contractor to correct the worksite violations, implement appropriate safety measures and pay accumulated fines with interest. Now, the court has held Lessard’s owner in civil contempt for defying the original 2011 order.

As a part of the recent court ruling, Lessard must do the following:

• Provide financial documentation to demonstrate the contractor’s ability to pay the $389,685 in outstanding OSHA fines.

• Ensure that employees and contractors use required safety equipment and fall protection.

• Conduct worksite safety analyses and meetings.

• Employ a competent person to ensure work proceeds according to OSHA regulations.

• Give OSHA details about each of the contractor’s worksites so the agency can conduct safety inspections.

Falls from ladders and roofs still account for the majority of injuries at work. In fact, fall protection violations are one of OSHA’s most frequent citations every year, with 6,072 issued in 2017 alone. Identifying fall hazards and deciding how to protect workers is the first step in eliminating or reducing fall hazards. Contact us at (916) 380-5300 for OSHA programs, presentations and training materials you can use to protect your employees and avoid costly fines.

Filed under: Construction,OSHA,Recent Headlines — Jillian Bender-Cormier @ 9:38 pm July 9, 2018

Maggie Bender-Johnson named President of Warren G. Bender Co.

Third generation to lead independent, family-owned insurance agency through next phase of growth

SACRAMENTO, CA — Warren G. Bender Co., one of the largest independent and family-owned insurance brokerages in the Sacramento region, announced today that Maggie Bender-Johnson, Vice President of Operations, was selected by the Board of Directors to assume the role of President, effective immediately. Bender-Johnson has been a part of Warren G. Bender since 2005 and has played an active role in helping guide the Company’s succession plan over the past seven years. Her father, Stephen Bender, who formerly was president and CEO, will remain the company’s CEO.

Bender-Johnson is the third generation of her family to serve as president of the company, founded in 1938 by Warren G. Bender. The company has carefully followed a succession plan for continued success and growth and Bender-Johnson has been an essential part of it in preparation for her role as president.

Stephen Bender said it was a good time to make the transition. “Maggie’s appointment and this transition are exciting milestones in a succession plan that we have been working on for seven years,” said Stephen Bender, CEO of Warren G. Bender. “Maggie has been an integral part of the company since she joined the firm in 2005, and there’s no one more qualified than she is to preserve the reputation, culture and values of the company – not only for today but for generations to come.”

TWEET THIS: Warren G. Bender (@WGBCO) names Maggie Bender-Johnson as President #SacramentoBusiness #insurance

Bender-Johnson graduated from the University of San Francisco and later earned an MBA from California State University, Sacramento. She has worked in a wide range of positions within the company, learning all of its business practices from the ground up. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Operations and is a partner in the company.
“I’m eager and excited to lead Warren G. Bender into its next 80 years and I’m honored to have this opportunity to further grow the company,” Bender-Johnson said. “Under the leadership of my father and grandfather, the company has experienced tremendous growth and success, and I am focused on continuing that legacy for years to come.”

“I can assure our clients that they will continue to enjoy the Bender experience,” Bender-Johnson continued. “We will build on the best; continue to preserve our culture and values; and embrace change and technology like never before.”

With only about 12 percent of family businesses surviving into the third generation under family leadership, Warren G. Bender has proven itself as a thriving, professionally-run family business that’s poised to succeed for many years to come.

Bender-Johnson is active in several community organizations, including the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Roseville Chamber of Commerce, the Capital Region Family Business Center, Soroptimists of Sacramento, Toastmasters, and the Placer County SPCA. She is an avid hiker and lives in Nevada County with her husband, Fergus – a Sacramento city firefighter – and their four dogs: Fonzie, Chewbacca, Lando and Worf.

Founded in 1938, Warren G. Bender Company is one of Northern California’s largest independent insurance brokerages. Headquartered in the Sacramento region and serving clients throughout the Western United States, the company focuses on enhancing and influencing strategies to support the growth and success of its clients. Warren G. Bender offers a comprehensive suite of business and personal insurance products such as commercial insurance, surety bonds, homeowners insurance and auto insurance; specializing in an array of industries including construction, commercial real estate, healthcare, manufacturing, technology, agriculture and much more. Family-owned for 80 years, the company’s mission is to provide protection, superior service and education to those who matter most, their clients. For additional information, please visit or call (916) 380-5300.

Jillian Bender-Cormier
Warren G. Bender Co. (916)380-5385

Filed under: Recent Headlines — Jillian Bender-Cormier @ 5:53 pm January 24, 2018

4 Steps to Protect Your Business From Fires

Fires can cause widespread devastation and are one of the biggest threats to any business. According to the National Fire Protection Association, there are over 130,000 non-residential fires every year that cause over $3 billion in property damage.

The best way to protect your business from a fire is to analyze your risk exposures and train your workforce on how to act. Even if you believe that your business is prepared for a fire, it’s important to review your fire prevention plan in order to make sure it’s up to date.

Here are four steps you should take to protect your business from fires:

1. Create an emergency evacuation plan. Your employees and customers should know how to leave your business at any time by locating a clearly marked, unobstructed emergency exit. You should also conduct an evacuation drill at least once every year to ensure that your employees know how to act.

2. Follow all of your fire code requirements.
Depending on your business’s size, industry and location, the fire code will require your business to take certain steps to prevent fires.

3. Install and maintain fire suppression systems. Make sure that your workplace is outfitted with automatic fire sprinklers and portable fire extinguishers. You should also make sure that fire extinguishers aren’t used after they have expired and that your workforce is trained to operate them.

4. Get in touch with local first responders. Establishing a relationship with your local fire department and providing them with your building’s floor plan will help ensure the fastest possible response time.

For more information on protecting your business from fires, contact us at (916) 380-5300 today.

Filed under: Property & Casualty,Recent Headlines,Safety — Jillian Bender-Cormier @ 11:17 pm January 17, 2018

Introducing ALICE (Active Shooter Defense) Training at Warren G. Bender Co.

According to the FBI, 160 active shooter incidents occurred in the United States between 2000 and 2013. Over 80 percent (132) of those incidents occurred at a place of work.

Warren G. Bender Co. has invested in specific training for you and your team called ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate). This training provides preparation and a plan for individuals and organizations on how to proactively handle the threat of an aggressive intruder or active shooter event. Whether it is an attack by an individual person or by an international group of professionals intent on conveying a political message through violence, ALICE Training option-based tactics have become the accepted response, versus the traditional “lockdown only” approach.

Protection and safety must be the priority in an Active Shooter event or Terrorist Attack. Circumstantial and operational concerns vary in every new situation. ALICE Training provides options that address the unique challenges specific to your business. We’re offering this training at a 40% discount at $9 per employee.

Don’t be in denial that your place of work and the people within it are exempt from an active shooter occurrence. Take advantage of the WGBCO ALICE training and show your team that you take their safety seriously.

916-380-5333 (direct)
Cost: $9 per employee (40% off)

Filed under: Recent Headlines,Safety — Jillian Bender-Cormier @ 12:54 am November 7, 2017

The CA Fire Situation – a note from our VP of Personal Risk Management

Update by Denise Metz, CISR, CPSR, CPRM

California has certainly seen its share of wildfires this month. While the smoke in our area is clearing, there are still several fires raging on. Below is information I obtained from As you will see most of the fires have some containment.

We have been fortunate as, out of the many Warren G. Bender Co. clients we have in the area, we have just one home that has been a total loss. This client is insured through Nationwide Private Client who is a premier carrier with robust coverages. I foresee one of the biggest challenges will be with the loss of use coverage. This coverage, simply put, will pay for our client to obtain housing until their home is habitable again. With Nationwide Private Client the coverage for this is on an actual loss sustained with no time limit basis. With other carriers this coverage can range from as low as 20% of the dwelling limit to a 12 month time frame (most commonly seen). Given the devastation of these fires, one can reasonably conclude there will be a shortage of materials and labor which is sure to cause significant delays when it comes to the rebuilding of these homes. I’m certain we will hear many stories about how long it is taking to rebuild and how people don’t have enough loss of use coverage especially, as the rental housing becomes saturated and the cost to rent inflates.

It is a devastating situation but as insurance professionals it causes us to look at ourselves and either say good job or we could have done more. I find comfort in knowing we at Warren G. Bender Co. can say “good job”.

Stats as of 10/17/17


• In unified command with Santa Rosa Fire Department & Sonoma County Sheriff
• CAL FIRE Incident Management Team assigned
• 23 civilian fatalities & 1 private water tender operator

Tubbs Fire, Sonoma and Napa Counties (more info…)
Between Calistoga and Santa Rosa
• 36,432 acres, 91% contained
• Significant number of structures destroyed

Pocket Fire, Sonoma County (more info…)
North of Geyserville
• 12,430 acres, 63% contained

Nuns Fire, Sonoma County (more info…)
East of Hwy 12 from east Santa Rosa to east of Sonoma
• 54,423 acres, 80% contained
• The Oakmont Fire burned into the Nuns Fire overnight.

• CAL FIRE Incident Management Team assigned

Atlas Fire, Napa & Solano Counties (more info…)
South of Lake Berryessa and northeast of Napa
• 51,064 acres, 83% contained
• 6 civilian fatalities
• Significant structures destroyed

• CAL FIRE Incident Management Team assigned

Redwood Valley, Mendocino County (more info…)
North of Hwy 20 in Potter Valley and Redwood Valley
• 35,800 acres, 75% contained
• 8 civilian fatalities
• Significant structures destroyed

Sulphur Fire, Lake County (more info…)
Clearlake Oaks
• 2,207 acres, 92% contained

WIND COMPLEX (3 fires)
• CAL FIRE Incident Management Team assigned

Cascade Fire, Yuba County (more info…)

Loma Rica area
• 9,989 acres, 98% contained
• 4 civilian fatalities
• Significant structure destroyed

Lobo Fire, Nevada County (more info…)

Rough and Ready area
• 821 acres, 99% contained
• Multiple structures destroyed

LaPorte Fire, Butte County (more info…)
Bangor area
• 6,151 acres, 98% contained


Fallon Fire, Alameda County NEW
Fallon Road, 3 miles east of Dublin
• 116 acres, 70% contained

**Unified Command Incidents**

Bear Fire, Santa Cruz County (more info…) NEW
Bear Creek Canyon Road, northeast of Boulder Creek
• 271 acres, 10% contained

**Federal Incidents**

Wilson Fire, Los Angeles County (more info…) NEW
Mount Wilson, Mount Wilson Observatory
• 30 acres, 25% contained

Buffalo Fire, San Diego County (more info…) NEW
Camp Pendleton
• 1,088 acres, 50% contained

Filed under: Personal Insurance,Recent Headlines — Jillian Bender-Cormier @ 11:48 pm October 18, 2017