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Risk Management

Cody Wheeler is a Middle Tennessean and State Farm agent by choice. They are choices that have served him well even if they were made with a certain level of uncertainty.

YOUR CAREER PATH IS INTERESTING. HOW DID YOU PIVOT FROM BEING A TVA COMPLIANCE OFFICER TO BECOMING A STATE FARM AGENT?
I was interning at TVA while studying business at the University of Tennessee. When a full-time opportunity became available around the time of graduation, I told TVA I wanted the job. I had basically completed a 9-month on-the-job interview and they hired me. TVA offered security but at the end of the day, I wanted to be in a field where I could unlock my potential. I looked at different industries like real estate, mortgage lending and insurance where I could make that happen while maintaining a sensible work-life balance. I chose insurance because it’s something everyone has to have. Not everyone has to refinance a house. But almost everyone drives a car or owns a home.

AT THE TIME YOU DIDN’T THINK COULD MAKE A CLEAN DEPARTURE FROM TVA. WHY WAS THAT?
I couldn’t leave TVA because they paid for my MBA. But a new CEO came in and offered voluntary departures. I asked if they’d forgive the loan and they agreed to do so. Soon I was driving to Franklin to interview with a representative from State Farm’s corporate office. I returned to Knoxville and told my fiancé, Ashley, I was taking her from her lifelong home in East Tennessee to Savannah in West Tennessee, where I would begin my insurance career, learning under an established agent. That was two months before our wedding.

AFTER TWO YEARS IN SAVANNAH, HOW DID YOU END UP IN FRANKLIN?
Middle Tennessee is a high-growth market and an ideal location for a family like ours. By the grace of God, an opportunity became available here. There’s a lot more to it but I interviewed for the job and was awarded my own agency. Of course, when we opened in October of 2016 there was zero business on the books. But for someone like me, who likes to get out and meet people, there was no better place to be.”

AS SOMEONE WHO ENJOYS BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS, WHERE MIGHT YOU BE SEEN AROUND TOWN?
It starts right here in Berry Farms. We insure a lot of people and businesses here. I enjoy golf and hunting. I play in a lot of scrambles and this is turkey-hunting territory. I’m also involved with HopeKids. Weekends are spent with my two young boys and Ashley, who is in her last semester at Belmont where she’s working toward her doctorate as a nurse practitioner.

AgentWheeler.com.

"I chose insurance because it’s something everyone has to have. Not everyone has to refinance a house. But almost everyone drives a car or owns a home."

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