When Bill Trudeau was considering having his company, Insurance Center of New England (ICNE), be a gold sponsor of the Gándara Center’s Frozen Yogurt 5K in Northampton for the third year in a row, it didn’t take him long to declare an emphatic “yes!”
The race, which will take place on August 26 at 9:00 a.m., is raising funds to build a universally accessible playground at our Mooreland residential group home for children. “After all, it’s for a great cause,” he said. “One of our core values at ICNE is ‘Always do the right thing,’ and that means being actively involved in the community.”
Trudeau has always felt compelled to give back to the community, taking leadership positions with such organizations as the American Red Cross of the Pioneer Valley (board member and former board chair), Hilltop Child & Adult Services (board president), the Springfield Museums (corporator), the Regional Employment Board of Hampden County (board member), Wilbraham United Church (governing board chair), and Hispanic Resources Inc. (board member), which provides housing for the mentally challenged primarily in the Hispanic community.
For Trudeau, this sense of social responsibility is deeply rooted in his family and in his childhood experience with the Boy Scouts, charity work in high school, and chairing the philanthropy committee of his fraternity, Alpha Chi Rho, at UMass Amherst, where he graduated with a BA in General Business/Finance from the university’s Isenberg School of Management. “I’ve been very fortunate in my life, and, like the old saying, much is expected from those whom much is given,” he said. Through his church, Wilbraham United, he has gotten involved in several mission outreach activities. Through Link to Libraries, a western Massachusetts non-profit that collects and distributes new and gently used books, he has been a volunteer reader for elementary school students at the Sumner Avenue School in Springfield for the past three years.
He especially likes getting involved in the Frozen Yogurt 5K because not only because of what it supports, but also because of the fun mood it creates in downtown Northampton. “It’s fantastic seeing a lot of the Gándara folks at the event, including Henry East-Trou,” the Center’s executive director, he said. “Every time I talk to Henry I get the feeling of someone who’s working feverishly to deliver for his clients.”
Trudeau joined Insurance Center of New England in 1990, finding his career “by accident” two months after graduating from college—at the time he wanted to be in sales, but trained for three years in a specialty program in insurance for banks. He became a partner and owner in 2001, has served as the president and CEO since 2012, and today he handles a diverse group of casualty property insurance accounts. Trudeau was named to BusinessWest magazine’s 40 Under Forty in 2008. “I was 39 years old—I just got in under the wire,” he said with a laugh.
The East Longmeadow native lives in Wilbraham with his wife, Tammy, and two daughters, 21 and 18. The couple will celebrate their 25th anniversary in September.