Agassiz & Odessa Mutual Fire Insurance Company was originally organized by a group of 25 farmers from Lac qui Parle and Big Stone Counties meeting at the Church of the Evangelical Association on June 8, 1888. The company was incorporated on June 15, 1888 and began business on October 1, 1888. Following its inception, the Company was authorized to write insurance in Agassiz, Yellow Bank, Walter, Perry, Augusta and Arena Townships in Lac qui Parle County and Odessa, Akron, Artichoke, Otrey, Almond, Prior, Big Stone, Malta and Ortonville Townships in Big Stone County.
The first annual meeting was held on June 3, 1889 in School District No. 20 of Agassiz Township. The balance in the company treasury at the end of the first year was $2.58. The 124th annual meeting was held on March 12, 2011 with a balance in the company treasury of $1,717,332.44. Beginning in 1909 and thereafter the annual members meetings were held in the Odessa Village Hall in Odessa, Minnesota.
In 1934 the company bought the Farmers & Merchants Bank building in Odessa and began using part of the building for a part time office and rented out the rest. In 1983 a new office building was constructed across the street from the bank building and presently serves as the company office.
In 1949 the company affiliated itself with the Farmers Mutual Reinsurance Company of Grinnell, Iowa, presently named Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company to add the necessary strength and stability to enable the company to write almost any size risk and to eliminate the need for any special assessment in the future.
In 1980 the name was changed to Agassiz & Odessa Mutual Insurance Company.
Agassiz & Odessa Mutual currently operates in nine counties in west central Minnesota including Big Stone, Chippewa, Grant, Lac qui Parle, Pope Stevens, Swift, Traverse and Yellow Medicine. We have agency contracts with fifteen independent insurance agencies throughout this area.
The secretaries of the Board of Directors had served as the general managers of the company over the years. In 1982 when the need for additional office help was apparent it was decided that an individual not holding a position on the Board of Directors be hired to manage the affairs of the Company and report directly to the Board of Directors.
Agassiz & Odessa Mutual currently has seven members serving on their Board of Directors and employs a full time company manager, a full time inspector/claims adjuster, one full time and one part time office staff personnel.