Horace Mann CEO: Education, Lifelong Learning, Intellectual Curiosity Equals Success

 Marita Zuraitis

 Toward the conclusion of the 2016 Women in School Leadership Forum, the superintendents, principals and other educators in attendance had the opportunity to listen to a journey. This was an extremely successful journey from the leader of the largest national multiline insurance company focusing on educators' financial needs.

Marita Zuraitis, served as the forum's final keynote speaker. She's the president and chief executive officers of Horace Mann Educators Corp, a position she has held since May 2013.

"My parents believed in education. They taught the value of being intellectually curious and being lifelong learners," she told the audience.

Zuraitis came to Horace Mann from the Hanover Insurance Group where she was president of Hanover's property and casualty companies and a member of the Hanover's Executive Leadership Team.

Advice she shared included the following:

  • Foundation Matters. Know what makes you tick. Know what you believe in.
  • Play to your strengths and be a problem solver. Be that good person. It is up to you whether things are obstacles or roadblocks. Or, do you look at them as opportunities?
  • It's important to have a work-life balance.
  • Your career is a journey. Have a path and have it in pencil. When you get to a fork in the road, consider both ways.
  • Be a lifelong learner. Ask why questions.
  • Surround yourself with good people. Be passionate about your work.

"Be a problem solver and be that good person,” she said. “Whatever your ultimate goal is, be the best person you can be."

To find out more about the 2016 Women in School Leadership Forum, hosted by AASA, The School Superintendents Association and the Association of California School Administrators, access #womenined.

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