Meet the Team

Group Benefits

 

Group Benefits

Tony Sorrentino

Principal

Tony is always on the run. Really. He's over halfway to his goal of completing 100 marathon runs. The same kind of discipline it takes to train for long-distance runs...

Tony is always on the run. Really. He’s over halfway to his goal of completing 100 marathons. The same kind of discipline it takes to train for long-distance runs also serves Tony well in the business world. Tony has over 30 years of experience with Group Health and Welfare Plan compliance under IRS, DOL and HHS regulations. He frequently lectures on Healthcare Reform Legislation, Section 125 plan compliance, Wellness initiatives, Consumer Driven Health Plans, HIPAA Privacy and Security, COBRA interpretation, ERISA fiduciary responsibilities and, most recently, the healthcare reform Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

He provides regulatory compliance in all areas of employee benefits and investment consultation services offered by the Firm, with particular emphasis on Group Health Plan Federal Mandates. Tony sets the standard for his team by being willing to go the distance to satisfy their clients’ individual benefits needs. His team has the training and discipline necessary to create proactive, cutting-edge solutions based on experience, research and current industry trends. No matter what the challenge, the goal remains the same — provide the best, most reliable products available, combined with outstanding customer service. No matter how large or small the client, Tony’s group benefits team provides a level of expertise for a price that is the same or less than the client has paid in the past. That kind of service is not widely available in the industry marketplace and sets SilverStone Group apart from its competitors.

Tony is a member of several professional associations including the Nebraska State Bar Association and Nebraska State Society of CPAs and serves as a member of the Adjunct Faculty of the Creighton University School of Law. How does he manage to do all this and train for marathons? Through discipline and a desire to see things through. 63 down, Tony, and only 37 to go!

Contact Information
e-mail: tsorrentino@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5470  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations

  • Attorney
  • Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC)
  • Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU)
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Certified Flexible Compensation Instructor (CFCI)

Education
Juris Doctorate
Creighton University School of Law |  Omaha, NE

Bachelor of Science  |  Business Administration
Creighton University |  Omaha, NE

Grant Matthies

Principal

Grant has the gift of being able to focus. On one client. On one goal. Honing in on a solution to fit the client's needs. And never giving up until all goals have been met...

Grant has the gift of being able to focus. On one client. On one goal. Honing in on a solution to fit the client's needs. And never giving up until all goals have been met and the client has a satisfactory outcome. With more than 23 years of experience working with employers on group health and welfare plans, Grant knows that customer service is built on the ability to create real world solutions for clients who deal with day-to-day benefit issues. His experience includes working with complicated funding arrangements, large multi-site employers, Rx vendors, TPAs and non-medical insurance plans. He also has additional experience with 401(k) retirement plans and Section 125 medical spending accounts.

Grant appreciates the importance of staying at the pinnacle of industry trends. This is evidenced by the number of publications that quote him as an expert in his field. He has also conducted hundreds of employee meetings and orientations regarding employer-sponsored benefit programs. Grant's relationship with the carrier and vendor marketplace helps clients maintain the most competitive pricing and the highest level of customer service available. United HealthCare elected Grant to their National Advisory Council in 2005. This group consists of 40 brokers from across the country that meet three times a year to provide feedback on United HealthCare's operations and plans for the future.

Grant and the Group Benefits Team work together to provide clients with the most current information on benefits -- always with the outstanding service SilverStone Group is known for.

Grant is currently serving as a board member for the YMCA of Greater Omaha. Grant is a past member of the Omaha Chamber of Commerce President's Club and an active member of St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church. In 2004, Grant was a recipient of the Midlands Business Journal's 40 Under 40 Award. This award honors 40 Omaha entrepreneurs, business owners, managers and professional men and women under the age of 40.

Contact Information
e-mail: gmatthies@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5466  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations
Health Insurance Associate (HIA)

Education
Bachelor of Science  |  Mathematics
Dana College |  Blair, NE

Brett Sesker

Principal, Senior Consultant

Brett Sesker is someone who will go above and beyond for his clients. Brett’s 26 years of experience in Group Health and Welfare plans serve him well in underwriting, product development, project...

Brett Sesker is someone who will go above and beyond for his clients. Brett’s 26 years of experience in Group Health and Welfare plans serve him well in underwriting, product development, project management, alternate funding and managed care. He spent 10 of those 26 years as an underwriter with a major insurance company, an experience, he says, that he “lived to tell about” and which gave him excellent insight into plan design and implementation of group benefits programs.

With specialties in small and large group risk management, alternate funding (including minimum premium and self-funding) product development, Medicare, compliance, project management, worksite benefits, medical, dental, life, disability, vision and leave management benefit programs, Brett is able to provide comprehensive benefits plans to his clients. Because he knows that every client is different, he enjoys getting to know each one individually as he develops a customized approach to meet their needs. Brett says that meeting the day-to-day challenges of creating understandable and valuable benefits programs allows him to learn new skills and remain open to thinking “outside the box.”

Brett served as a board member for Junior Achievement, Elkhorn Public Schools Foundation and the Wellness Council of the Midlands (WELCOM). He is an avid Iowa Hawkeye fan while living in the great State of Nebraska.

Contact Information
e-mail: bsesker@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5451  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations

  • Fellow Life Management Institute (FLMI)
  • Health Insurance Associate (HIA)
  • Associate, Life and Health Claims (ALHC)
  • Group Benefits Associate (GBA)
  • Producer's Licenses in Nebraska and Iowa for HMO, Life Insurance and Annuities, Sickness, Accident and Health
  • State of Nebraska Consultant's License in Life and Health

Education
Graduate Work Masters in Business Administration
Drake University |  Des Moines, IA

Bachelor of Business Administration  |  Economics
University of Iowa |  Iowa City, IA

Jeff Jorth

Principal

Although he lives and works in Nebraska, Jeff is a diehard Iowa Hawkeyes fan – a risky allegiance to make in Husker territory! When he isn’t busy supporting the Hawkeyes, Jeff is hard at work as a trusted advisor with employers on their...

Although he lives and works in Nebraska, Jeff is a diehard Iowa Hawkeyes fan – a risky allegiance to make in Husker territory! When he isn’t busy supporting the Hawkeyes, Jeff is hard at work as a trusted advisor with employers on their group health and welfare plans. He knows that developing a strategic partnership with clients helps drive solutions through teamwork and goal-sharing.

Jeff’s experience includes alternate funding arrangements, healthcare reform, vendor evaluation, diverse employee populations, consumer-driven health plans, large multi-state employers and defined contribution strategies. In addition, Jeff worked for 2 years as a major accounts sales executive for UnitedHealthcare.

Various publications have quoted Jeff as an expert in his field. He has conducted hundreds of employee meetings and orientations regarding employer-sponsored benefit programs, and has made many presentations on consumer driven healthcare, focusing on both Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRAs), Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and healthcare reform.

Jeff and his team possess the expertise needed to understand the changing environment and to assist employers in analyzing needs and evaluating options, as well as developing and managing a benefits program that attracts and retains quality employees while meeting the financial targets established.

Jeff is an active member of the Board of Directors for the Nebraska Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. He is also involved with United Way and Nothing But Net Foundation. Jeff is a member of Bethany Lutheran Church and the Nebraska Association of Health Underwriters. He is a graduate of Leadership Omaha, Class 28 (the best class ever!) and was named to the Omaha Jaycees Ten Outstanding Young Omahans (TOYO) in 2009. Jeff was also a 2011 recipient of the Midlands Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 award.

In 2006, Jeff was awarded the “Distinguished Alumni Award for Service” by Waldorf University (his alma mater). When he is not busy drafting solutions for his clients, Jeff enjoys spending time with his wife (who was his high school sweetheart) and their two sons.

Contact Information
e-mail: jjorth@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5622  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Education
Bachelor of Arts  |  Finance & Management
Waldorf University |  Forest City, IA

Bill Fox

Principal, Senior Consultant

Despite his serious demeanor, Bill Fox will throw caution into the wind and hop on his motorcycle any day. Bill has more than 25 years of experience managing group insurance accounts that have both multiple-plan options and multiple-corporate

Despite his serious demeanor, Bill Fox will throw caution into the wind and hop on his motorcycle any day. Bill has more than 25 years of experience managing group insurance accounts that have both multiple-plan options and multiple-corporate locations. His areas of specialty include underwriting/budgeting, plan design analysis, analysis of alternate funding methodologies and administration and communication of group insurance programs for large employers. He has extensive knowledge of government filings in health and welfare plans.

Bill works with a solid, “best-in-class” benefits team whose resources allow them to be responsive and effective in supporting customer needs — whether it’s customer service issues such as claims resolution or billing issues, claims underwriting analysis and strategic planning, or all points in between. He believes he makes a difference to his clients by using a proactive approach to consulting; he offers customers short- and long-term strategies for managing their employee benefit plans. There is no ‘one size fits all’ answer for a benefits program, so our continual evaluation and establishment of a strategic plan for each customer offers unique solutions to control costs, and remain competitive in their own industry by recruiting and retaining the best employees. Over the course of his employment with SilverStone Group, Bill has come to appreciate the flexibility to handle job duties to the best of his ability without being micromanaged. Bill believes that a large part of his success with the Firm is due to the support and encouragement he has received while building his career.

Bill has been a contributing author for the Firm’s SilverLink magazine. He is a former officer for the Nebraska chapter of CEBS. Bill has been a mentor for the TeamMates Mentoring Program.

Contact Information
e-mail: bfox@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5455  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations

  • Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS)
  • Health Insurance Associate (HIA)

Education
Bachelor of Science  |  Business Administration, Finance
University of Nebraska-Lincoln |  Lincoln, NE

cara-kirsch-photo

Cara Kirsch

Vice President

Although Cara has moved back and forth from the California Bay Area twice since 2000, she is here to stay! Her proven ability to develop strategic alliances, motivate high performing teams...

Although Cara has moved back and forth from the California Bay Area twice since 2000, she is here to stay! Her proven ability to develop strategic alliances, motivate high performing teams and execute organizational strategy is an asset to SilverStone Group. In her role as Vice President of the Group division, Cara focuses on new business sales and building relationships with clients and prospects.

Cara is a motivated and dynamic employee benefits professional offering 20 years of expertise in all facets of employee benefit management, including sales, account management, business development and project management. She makes a difference with clients because of her unique background in account management, sales and strategy. Specifically, Cara puts her clients' interests first and builds their trust by working tirelessly on their behalf. Her ability to think outside the box brings value to her customers and demonstrates her commitment to drive innovation.

In 2012, Cara was recognized by the Midlands Business Journal with the 40 Under 40 Award. In early 2017, Cara was also featured in a special “Women in Business” issue of B2B Magazine. Prior to joining SilverStone Group, Cara was the director of large and national account sales for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska.

In 2014, Cara joined the speaking circuit and now speaks regularly on employee benefit topics, as well as women in leadership. She has been featured in the Midlands Business Journal and benefitsPro magazine as a face of change in the employee benefits industry.

Cara serves on several local boards, including the Omaha Association of Health Underwriters and the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce. She also does committee work for the Omaha Women’s Fund. Cara is a graduate of Leadership Nebraska Class IX. We’re especially glad she is here to stay!

Contact Information
e-mail: ckirsch@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5772  |  mobile: 402.490.6401 |  fax: 402.963.4083

Dan LaRock

Principal

Dan knows that the best solutions are often a result of collaboration – both within our Firm and with our clients. He believes he can make a difference for clients by delivering sound, independent advice and education related to industry changes and new developments. 

Dan knows that the best solutions are often a result of collaboration – both within our Firm and with our clients. He believes he can make a difference for clients by delivering sound, independent advice and education related to industry changes and new developments.  Dan works with a talented team of industry experts, and together they build a mutually valued partnership with clients to help them best understand their group benefits.

Prior to joining SilverStone Group, Dan worked in professional public relations, fundraising and consulting positions. His experience in donor cultivation and management is beneficial to all of SilverStone Group’s service areas.

Dan and his wife, Marie, have lived in Hills, Minnesota since 2000 where they raised three children together: Luke, Allie and Zach. He is a committed volunteer for organizations throughout the region. In addition to his board duties with SWMN CEO, he serves his community as an elected board member of the Hills-Beaver Creek School District 671 and is a newly elected member of the University of Sioux Falls Board of Trustees. He also volunteers his time to benefit Children’s Home Society of SD, Hope Haven, LifeScape and Bethlehem Lutheran Church. Dan and Marie recently founded a mission-based 501(c)(3) children’s organization called Rock Ranch. To learn more, visit www.riderockranch.org.

Contact Information
e-mail: dlarock@ssgi.com |  phone: 605.444.5108  |  fax: 605.332.2105

Education
Bachelor of Science  |  Mass Communications
Minnesota State University |  Moorhead, MN

Dan Myers

Vice President

When away from work, Dan Myers enjoys traveling to Sanibel Island, FL with his wife to relax and take advantage of the warm weather on the beach.

When away from work, Dan enjoys traveling to Sanibel Island, FL with his wife to relax and take advantage of the warm weather on the beach. When he isn’t taking in the sun and sand, Dan is hard at work, specializing as a broker or consultant for group medical, dental, disability, life and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA).

During his 33 years of experience in the Employee Benefits field, Dan has worked on both the insurance company and broker sides of the industry. He believes this vast experience allows him to contribute a strong perspective regarding insurance carrier philosophies, broker competition and the service/solution needs of clients. His unique ability to present multiple lines of employee benefit and administrative programs, coupled with our highly qualified Client Services Team, Dan provides his clients with trusted advisors for their employee benefit plans.

Dan knows the importance of acting as an advocate for his clients and he searches for the best possible outcome in every engagement. He takes pride in his team’s ability to solve benefit issues and to develop new products that will enhance each client’s benefits portfolio. Dan’s team makes a difference for clients by being proactive, taking the time to listen and providing outstanding customer service.

Dan is a member of the Omaha Association of Health Underwriters (for whom he served as president in 1996) and is a member of the Ollie Webb Center Board of Directors. Dan is also active in both the Sarpy and Bellevue chambers of commerce. Dan is a Creighton University alum and proud supporter of the Creighton Bluejay basketball and soccer teams.

Contact Information
e-mail: dmyers@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5476  |  fax: 402.963.4090

Professional Designations

  • Registered Health Underwriter (RHU)
  • Registered Employee Benefits Consultant (REBC)

Education
Bachelor of Arts
Creighton University | Omaha, NE

Scott Simon

Vice President, Senior Consultant

When Scott advises his clients about Wellness programs, he knows what he's talking about -- because he lives the Wellness ethic. Scott has more than 29 years of experience...

 When Scott Simon advises his clients about Wellness programs, he knows what he’s talking about — because he lives the Wellness ethic. Scott has more than 29 years of experience working with Group Health and Welfare Plans. During his employment with United Healthcare and CIGNA, he specialized in the management of medical, dental, life and disability programs.

With more than 10 years of underwriting experience working with self- funded and fully insured plans, Scott has the strong technical background needed to thoroughly analyze healthcare issues and develop creative solutions for his clients. This background also provides him with the tools needed to negotiate with insurance companies and third-party administrators.

Scott also has several years of claims experience working on a management team responsible for production and customer service. His experience with claims management helps him understand the value of good customer service and the importance of being proactive to serve his clients’ needs.

Scott and his team know how important it is to thoroughly analyze a client’s situation, getting to know the people and how their health benefits can impact their lives. Scott’s underwriting background plays a large part in the success of placing his clients’ coverages, and his team’s dedication to great service assures that expectations are exceeded.

Scott is a former member of SilverStone Group’s Wellness Committee. He has been a chairperson for the Walk-for-Diabetes organization and has chaired many other events.

Contact Information
e-mail: ssimon@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5464  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations
Group Benefits Associate (GBA)

Education
Master of Business Administration
University of Hartford  |  Hartford, CT

Bachelor of Science  |  Business Administration
University of Hartford  |  Hartford, CT

Chad Tremel

Vice President

When Chad began working for SilverStone Group, he never dreamed that he would still be here 20 years later. The reason he’s stayed is three-fold. First, he loves working in a challenging, competitive environment. Secondly, he appreciates the fact...

When Chad began working for SilverStone Group, he never dreamed that he would still be here 20 years later. The reason he’s stayed is three-fold. First, he loves working in a challenging, competitive environment. Secondly, he appreciates the fact that SilverStone Group sets some of the highest standards in the industry and he wholeheartedly supports the philosophy that client satisfaction is the Firm’s number one concern. But most importantly, Chad says it’s an honor to work with people of character who are experts in their field and who value trustworthiness, honesty and integrity as much as he does.

A 22-year industry veteran, Chad specializes in the design and implementation of group benefit programs that help employers provide comprehensive benefit packages to attract and retain employees. Although he works with clients of all sizes, the majority of his accounts are in the “middle market,” which includes employers with 25-150 employees. For these clients, providing employee benefits is often a challenge. Underwriting expertise, market analysis and negotiating power are extremely important and can make a discernible difference in the client’s success.

Chad has presented before the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, the Lincoln Chapter of Associated General Contractors and numerous nonprofit organizations. He is often quoted in publications as an expert in the field and has led hundreds of employee meetings and orientations regarding employer-sponsored benefit programs.

In addition to his job responsibilities, Chad is a member of SilverStone Group’s Wellness Activities Group (WAG), which is dedicated to maintaining and enhancing Associate health and wellness.

Chad is a member of many professional and civic organizations, including the ALS Association Mid-America Chapter, Junior Achievement and Make-A-Wish Foundation. He is a member of St. Patrick's Catholic Church.

Contact Information
e-mail: ctremel@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5467  |  fax: 402.963.4083

Professional Designations
Health Insurance Association (HIA)

Suzie E. Hurley

Vice President

Suzie Hurley has always had a passion for basketball. She played half-court IA girls basketball in the late 70's and had the unique opportunity to play for the same person that also coached her mother in the 1940's.

Suzie Hurley has always had a passion for basketball. She played half-court IA girls basketball in the late 70's and had the unique opportunity to play for the same person that also coached her mother in  the 1940's. Since then, Suzie’s passion and competitive drive has translated into a successful career for her in Group Benefits . With 30 years of experience in the industry, Suzie is deemed as one of the premier benefit management professionals in the region.

Suzie is a veteran in the employee benefits arena.  She advises clients that often utilize a self-funded approach for their benefit plans and understands that each client is different and unique, which means so are their needs.  The strategies she helps her clients adopt are customized to fit their specific areas of concern and their budgets.  Her extensive background in claim operations with multiple third party administrators in her career has allowed her to uncover potential opportunities for her clients to keep their costs manageable.  Suzie has expertise in creative funding alternatives, provider network contract arrangements as well as great knowledge on healthcare reform.  These skills help her position her clients well in the market place which allows them to provide the most fiscally responsible benefits for their employees. In 2010 Suzie received special recognition from SilverStone Group when she was awarded the H.H. “Red” Nelson Award for excellence in client service.

In addition to her strong work ethic, Suzie plays an active role in the community. She is a current member and past President of the Sioux Falls Downtown Lions Club and has received the Melvin Jones Fellow for Dedicated Humanitarian Services award from the Lions Club International.  Suzie also co-chaired the 2012 Habitat for Humanity of Coreatu Sioux Falls Women Build Project.

Contact Information
e-mail: shurley@ssgi.com |  phone: 605.444.5105  |  fax: 605.332.5105

Tanya Mulder

Vice President

Whether she’s in the office or on the volleyball court, Tanya knows how to get the job done!

Whether she’s in the office or on the volleyball court, Tanya knows how to get the job done! She also realizes the value of hard work, having earned her bachelor’s degree in 3½ years while playing on the Doane College volleyball team. Being part of a team comes naturally to Tanya, so joining SilverStone Group was easy for her. Tanya appreciates how SilverStone Group Associates work together for the common goal – to make clients happy!

Tanya has more than eleven years of experience in the Worksite Marketing industry. Each day, she helps clients and their employees develop a strong understanding of their benefits, making sure their needs are taken care of. She helps with billing, claims and any other issues that may arise before, during or after enrollment.

In her spare time, Tanya enjoys spending time with family and friends. She also continues to play competitive volleyball, both indoor and sand.

Contact Information
e-mail: tmulder@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5607  |  fax: 402.963.4086

Tim Richards

Medicare Solutions Specialist

Ask Tim what he loves about his job and he will tell you that it is his interaction with people. He enjoys working with both clients and fellow team members on a day-to-day basis. Tim has more than 25 years of insurance experience...

Ask Tim what he loves about his job and he will tell you that it is his interaction with people. He enjoys working with both clients and fellow team members on a day-to-day basis. Tim has more than 25 years of insurance experience and has specialized in supplemental plans throughout his career. He is particularly skilled at addressing the health insurance needs of the over-65 market.

 

Tim strives to do what is best for his clients and works hard to achieve a high level of customer satisfaction. He uses a hands-on method, promoting a consultative approach to ensure his clients receive the best guidance based on their individual needs. Tim can also assist with other insurance needs for the retiree and over-65 market, such as dental / vision, life, long-term care and critical illness.

 

When not at work, Tim enjoys spending time with his family, working out and playing golf.

Contact Information
e-mail: trichards@ssgi.com |  phone: 402.964.5591  |  fax: 402.963.4086

Professional Designations

  • Registered Health Underwriter (RHU)

Education
Bachelor of Science  |  Criminal Justice
University of Nebraska-Omaha  |  Omaha, NE

Bachelor of Arts  |  Business Administration
Bellevue University  |  Bellevue, NE

Aaron Janssen

Account Executive

Aaron excels at focusing on the needs of his clients. As an Account Executive working on our Group Benefits Team, he develops business relationships and provides professional advice regarding benefit plan designs.

Aaron excels at focusing on the needs of his clients. As an Account Executive working on our Group Benefits Team, he develops business relationships and provides professional advice regarding benefit plan designs.

Prior to his time with SilverStone Group, Aaron worked with groups and individuals throughout the Midwest to help them understand their retirement strategies, including Medicare options and entitlements. With each presentation he gives, Aaron strives to leave his clients thinking, “I get it now.” His main goal is not sales but rather educating clients on their options while cutting through the clutter and the noise.

Aaron enjoys working at SilverStone Group because his vision aligns with ours—to put the clients’ needs first. Aaron is a member of the NAIFA (National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors—Sioux Falls) and Sioux Falls Connections. His hard work has earned him several awards, including the Pacesetter Award, the Club inductee, Agent of the Month and most recently, the 2017 John Carlson Award.

When Aaron is not brainstorming solutions for clients at work, you can find him on the ice! As a lover of hockey, he plays in the Sioux Falls Adult City League and also enjoys playing golf. He is a proud husband and father of two young daughters, Irelyn and Austyn.

Contact Information
e-mail: ajanssen@ssgi.com |  phone: 605.367.6374  |  fax: 605.332.2105

Education
Bachelor of Arts  |  Community Psychology
St. Cloud State University  |   St. Cloud, MN