Jeff Eckburg has been an insurance agent since 1989. A native of Pecatonica, Jeff graduated from Eastern Illinois University where he studied journalism and communications. He joined the Agency upon graduation from college, and is the current President and owner.
Jeff is an active parishioner of Holy Family Catholic Church where he sings in the choir and serves as a cantor.
Matt Weber is a lifelong resident of Boone and Winnebago counties and is a graduate of Boylan Catholic High School. After high school, Matt was drafted by the Chicago Cubs and spent four years in the minor leagues before obtaining his degree in accounting from Rockford University.
Matt has been an agent with Eckburg since 2015 and volunteers his time across Rockford as a member of the Boys and Girls Club Board, the Goldie Floberg Board, and the Boylan Alumni Board. When he is not in the office, Matt enjoys coaching the Boylan varsity baseball team and spending time with his wife, Lauren (Commare) Weber and their three boys, Brode, Landon, and Hunter.
Tyler Pickering was raised in Rockford and attended Guilford High School. He spent four years at the University of Illinois, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in political science before returning to the Rockford region. Tyler joined the Eckburg team in 2014 servicing commercial accounts, and has become an agent in the time since. Tyler is involved in several local organizations including the Literacy Council, the Irish Marching Society, Rockford Cosmopolitan, Element Rockford, and Rockford Promise.
One of Tyler’s greatest accomplishments as an agent was working with a local non-profit to offer coverage that minimized overhead. The client was grateful to be able to use more of its funds for its cause rather than unnecessary bills.
Carla Towns was born in Charleston, South Carolina, but has been a Rockford resident since the age of eight. She attended Auburn High School and was a member of the CAPA (Creative and Performing Arts) and Academy Programs, and attended Rock Valley College after graduating high school. Carla obtained her associate’s degree from Rock Valley College after graduating from Auburn. Carla came to Eckburg in 2014 as a personal lines service agent and moved into the agent role in 2018. When she is not at the office or meeting with clients, Carla gives her time to the Rockford Park District’s Therapeutic Recreation Department.
A client once thanked Carla for helping in the submission of a claim that was not for a policy Eckburg had on file. She is always willing to go the extra mile for the customers of the agency.
Wanda Oslund is Rockford born and raised and attended East High School. (Go E-Rabs!) She went to Rock Valley college after high school and began working at Eckburg in 1998 as a personal lines customer service agent. She has been here ever since! Wanda and her husband love spending time with the family, and they take trips down to the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri to go boating and enjoy nature as often as possible.
Clients tell Wanda she always makes them feel as if she has their best interest in mind and always goes above and beyond to help.
Erin Blomquist-Bloom grew up in Rockford and attended Boylan Catholic High School. She began working at Eckburg in 2007 as a receptionist, and has since moved into commercial and personal lines as a service agent. When she is not busy working with her clients, Erin enjoys spending time with her husband and children.
Kristen Lyons is originally from Rockford and attended Boylan Catholic High School. She began working at the agency in 2014 and works in the personal lines department as a service agent.
Outside of the office, Kristen stays active. She enjoys running, lifting weights, and kickboxing. She also spends plenty of free time with her friends and family and especially her dog, Riley.
Meghan Finn is from the Rockford area and attended Harlem High School. She went to Rock Valley College and began working as the receptionist at Eckburg in 2014. Since, Meghan has moved into personal lines servicing. Meghan loves spending time in the outdoors with her two children. Rock Cut State Park and Lake Geneva are two popular destinations in the summertime.
Meghan cares a lot about her clients. “A friend from high school was a first-time home buyer — she reached out to me to quote her insurance. She was pleased with the premium being so affordable. A claim happened 6 months after her purchase, and she said I made the process much less stressful for her. She remembered me calling after the claim was submitted to check if everything was being handled and seeing if she had any questions.”
Dawn Schmidt was born in the Chicago suburbs but moved to Rockford during high school, and she considers Rockford her hometown. Upon graduation from East High School, Dawn attended Rock Valley College to study accounting. She has been with Eckburg since 2015 working as a personal lines service agent. Outside the office, Dawn volunteers for the Salvation Army and several other local charities.
A client was appreciative of Dawn when she went above and beyond to get a policy reinstated and a payment issue resolved before the client was even aware there was a problem. This client was glad Dawn was proactive and had his back!
Julie Buelow is originally from Durand, Illinois and attended Durand High School. She joined Eckburg in 1998 as a customer service representative, and now acts as the office manager for the agency. Julie enjoys being outdoors, whether it is gardening, biking, skiing, or hiking. She spends her free time volunteering for her church and the Rockford Rescue Mission. Julie likes being involved with the sports that her son plays, too.
“Customers always appreciate honest answers. I've had situations when offering a quote when it made more sense for the person to stay with their current carrier instead of changing. While reviewing their coverage I offered suggestions for coverage changes to improve their policy and they thanked me because I took the time to review, explain and give my honest opinion even though I didn't take over their policies.”
Michelle Heggemeier is originally from Rockford and attended Boylan Catholic High School. She received her Associate's degree from Rock Valley College before moving on to Northern Illinois University and completing her Bachelor's degree in Finance. Michelle started at Eckburg in 2011 as the receptionist, and has since moved into the commercial department as a service agent.
Heather Bickford grew up in Belvidere and graduated from Rock Valley College. After studying at the University of Maine at Machias, Heather returned to the Rockford area and began working at Eckburg in 2013 as the receptionist. She quickly made her way into working as a commercial lines service agent. In her free time, Heather enjoys spending her free time with her family and volunteering at her son’s school.
Heather loves going above and beyond with her clients, and often meets with them at their place of business to visit and review policies.
Brandi Ducharme, originally from Lena, Illinois, joined the agency in March of 2018 as a customer service agent in the commercial lines department. Outside of work, Brandi spends time with her husband, Charles, and their dog Buster. They love visiting family, getting out and exploring new places, and reading books.
Steve Eckburg is a Pecatonica native and graduated from Pecatonica high school. He studied at the University of South Carolina and Illinois State University before returning to Rockford and joining the agency. Steve began working in marketing at Eckburg in 2005 and has since moved into the bookkeeping and operations role.
Nick Verstraete is a lifelong resident of Rockford and attended Boylan Catholic High School. Nick began working at Eckburg in 2015 while he was still attending Rock Valley College, and has remained with the agency since obtaining his associate’s degree. He works mainly in personal lines as the quotation specialist, but also assists in the commercial department from time to time. Aside from work, Nick gives his time to the Rockton Lions Club at their annual event, Old Settlers Days. He tries to hit the links whenever he can, too.
Nick has always been helpful and hardworking; one client in particular was so pleased with Nick when he took the time to go out to a property and take pictures when she was unable to do so.
Mark Schaer is a lifelong Rockford resident and a graduate of Boylan Catholic High School. After high school, Mark earned his bachelor’s degree in marketing and public relations at the University of Illinois and came home to Rockford in the fall of 2017 to join Eckburg. Mark handles the marketing for the agency and assists in the personal lines department. Outside of the office, Mark enjoys watching Illini athletics and playing pick-up basketball games at the downtown YMCA. He also volunteers as a cantor at the Cathedral of St. Peter.
Allison Shumowsky is originally from La Grange Park, Illinois and attended Riverside Brookfield High School. She obtained her associate’s degree from the College of DuPage and moved to Rockford in February of 2018 to begin working as the agency’s receptionist. Allison likes spending her free time with family and going to sporting events.