About us

Every valuation and business plan we prepare is exclusively for independent insurance agency owners. In fact, for 124 years we have been serving independent insurance agents in their business development and growth plans.

Our valuation team has a collective 50 years of experience in the industry and will serve as your trusted advisor on your journey to optimize your agency’s value.

Meet Our Valuation Experts

Craig Niess, CVA, MBA

Crag Niess is Director of Business Planning & Valuation for IA Valuations. Between his time with OIA/IA Valuations and MarshBerry, Craig has over a decade of financial and operational consulting experience with independent insurance agencies. He has advised many independent agency owners on their transition and perpetuation plans, created financial models to support an ownership transition, and developed producer hiring and business planning for agency growth. In addition, he has completed hundreds of valuations and consulting projects for independent agencies of all sizes. He holds a BA in Economics from Ohio Wesleyan University, and an MBA in Finance from the University of Iowa. He also earned the highest and most prestigious designation in the valuation profession – the Certified Valuation Analyst designation.

Jeff Smith, JD, CIC, CAE

Jeff Smith serves as Chief Executive Officer for Ohio Insurance Agents Association (OIA) and IA Valuations. He is responsible for leading the organization’s strategic initiatives and day to day operations. As CEO of IA Valuations, Smith has consulted and reviewed over 200 agency valuations for independent agents across the US. Smith provides insights into the agency’s operations, risk factors, and legal guidance on how to perpetuate and maximize value in a sale. Smith graduated with honors from Kent State University and Capital University Law School with a concentration in government relations. He is a licensed P&C insurance agent, Certified Insurance Counselor Designee, Attorney, and Certified Association Executive. Smith is an active member of the Ohio State Bar Association Insurance Committee, Ohio Society of Association Executives, and Ohio Lobbying Association.

Meet our amazing team.

Our seasoned experts are here to help you
Jodie Shaw serves as the Director of Business Development at IA Valuations. She joined the staff in October of 2014 and has worked within the insurance industry for the past 17 years. Jodie has worked with over 200 valuation clients, providing white glove service and guidance as they secure their financial future. She does this by assisting them through the process of determining their agencies’ fair market value in order to make informed business decisions.

Jeff Smith


Chief Executive Officer

Jodie Shaw


Director of Business Development

Craig Niess is our seasoned Business Planning & Valuation Director, with more than a decade of financial and operational consulting experience. He has spent most of his career specializing in valuations and perpetuation planning. Craig joined OIA in 2017 and has performed over 300 valuations in his career. Craig holds a BA in Economics from Ohio Wesleyan, an MBA in Finance from the University of Iowa, and earned the prestigious Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) designation. 
Dawn Kuhn is the Director of Finance. Dawn received her BSBA with a concentration in accounting from West Virginia University and began her career in public accounting. She transitioned to a not-for-profit career when she became the first Controller for West Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church. She has served as a CFO, interim CEO, and Director throughout her career.

Colleen Barbara

Marketing Coordinator

Craig Niess


Business Planning & Valuations Director

Dawn Kuhn


Director of Finance

Meet our amazing partners.

From company partners to state associations, we’re better together and collectively we can help you and your agency be the best by simply knowing your worth today.

PIA of Indiana
Professional Insurance Agents of Indiana is the collective voice of more than 600 independent insurance professionals.
Many Agents, 1 Voice
At OIA, it's all about you: the independent insurance agent. As your collaborative partner and trusted advisor, we're here to help you maximize your business.

Contact Us Today

Let’s start planning for your agency’s future.