Ronald R. Harder, chief executive officer of Jewelers Mutual Insurance, was recently honored in New York City by industry leaders in advance of his retirement in May.
The Jewelers Mutual Gala, held at the Marriott Marquis Hotel on Times Square, had a tongue-in-cheek James Bond theme—playing off Harder’s unassuming nature and the company’s insurance “agents”—complete with dossier-inspired programs, music videos from Bond films, and a 007 ice sculpture.
Harder—an easy-going, soft-spoken, but shrewd executive—has been with Jewelers Mutual since 1973 and was its president and chief executive officer for 23 years. Under Harder’s leadership, the company became a national insurer with over 10,000 policyholders, including some private jewelry owners.
Jewelers Mutual’s current president, Darin L. Kath, praised his predecessor’s “34 years of dedication, leader-ship, and commitment to the jewelry industry.”
Harder briefly reminisced about his career and Jewelers Mutual’s achievements during his years there; thanked its employees, officials, policy-holders, and his family; and noted that “the relationships and friendships I have formed have warmed my heart.”
Then, the guests were served champagne and, led by Kath, raised their glasses in a toast to Harder as flurries of silvery confetti fell from the ceiling amid cheers and applause.