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Grandpa. Fisherman. Mentor. THE ANSWER GUY

Not your stereotypical salesman, Rick Fleming of USHealth Advisors makes helping people his No. 1 job

You can’t describe Rick Fleming in just one way.

There’s his height: 6-foot-3, with a frame of a sportsman (he’s a surf fisherman).

In his office, a portrait of six girls in tutus, queued on the sand before a crashing wave, attests to his status as doting grandfather and beach lover.

The back-and-forth ribbing within his 9-person workplace off Moorefield Drive offers evidence he’s loved and respected as a mentor. His USHealth Advisors office hops after hours, too, as Rick hosts morning meetings of his business associations and networking socials at night.

While not a veteran himself, he’s so committed to supporting our military that his office is a drop-off point for Tech for Troops, a charity that refurbishes computers, phones and the like for needy servicemen and women.

He’s mentor, trainer, and educator – a connector for whom referrals come as naturally as breathing.  

“I consider myself the answer guy. The fix-it guy,” said Rick, a Virginia Tech grad. “I have a very large quiver. I have folks at my fingertips.”

For customers, that means Rick will refer them to a competitor if he can’t find the right USHealth plan for them. “I won’t put a square peg into a round hole,” he said.

He loves to make referrals. He’s especially eager to help small businesses and 1099 contract workers, but his ability to connect people runs the gamut. He’s hooked folks up with a furniture refinisher (one of his daughters), real estate agents and mortgage brokers, parenting resources (one of his granddaughters copes with ADHD), a chiropractor (for a client’s friend with a sore back), physicians, property & casualty insurers, and home service providers. He recently helped a friend find someone to put a ceramic coating on a new SUV.

But health insurance is where he works most of his magic. For Rick, who has a granddaughter with Type 1 diabetes and who himself has a disorder that disqualifies him from standard insurance, it’s personal.

“Our product is unique. We’re not cookie-cutter,” he said, noting his own USHealth Advisors high-risk plan saved him over $500 a month. “But I hope my reputation is better than the product.”

He takes pride in making a difference for his clients and putting their needs first. “We’ve had clients who’ve had a half-a-million-dollar heart attack, and we paid it all,” said Rick, who’s licensed in 23 Eastern and Midwestern states. “I may tell clients to keep their plan. Right now we’re working on saving a great deal of money for a contracting company. I’m 100% about the client. We have very, very good customer service at our office.”

A typical day for Rick starts with networking. Then a lot of time on email and the phone. Interviewed during the annual “open enrollment” period, Rick confessed to divvying up 500 leads among his agents (“95% of my business is referrals”) and training four new salesmen, which involves working alongside them with clients.

“I don’t send new agents out on their own,” Rick said of his hands-on coaching style. “These people are family to me. I want them to succeed.”

Rick got into health insurance after a varied career that included time in Human Resources and at his father’s Chesterfield office supply company (now sold). USHealth Advisors impressed him immediately.

“Four execs took me out to a 5-star restaurant and they were praying before dinner,” said Rick, a cross around his neck. “This is part of my ministry. It’s an absolute passion for me. This field … it picked me.”

When he’s not at the office, he’s with family – wife Patty and two daughters (the parents of those 6 granddaughters). Rick’s new 4-bedroom Stonehenge home is between Farmville and Newport News, where his girls live – roomy enough for their visits.

“I love what I do, but I’m not going to work 80 hours anymore,” he said.