Welcome to the Monte Ahuja College of Business

Visiting Committee MEMBER PROFILE: Howard Lewis

Howard LewisHoward L. Lewis

Founder and Chairman Emeritus

Family Heritage Life Insurance Company of America

Howard L. Lewis is Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Family Heritage Life Insurance Company of America. Mr. Lewis began his professional career in the financial services industry with Central Trust Company, a dominant banking concern headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio and the second largest trust company in Ohio.  In 1978, he joined Picker International Corporation, a worldwide leader in diagnostic imaging, computed technology, and magnetic resonance imaging.  At Picker, Mr. Lewis directed and managed the Cincinnati District’s growing business operations.  The improved results gained him recognition at the World Headquarters in Cleveland, Ohio, and in 1978 he was promoted to become the company’s National Business Manager.

In 1981, Mr. Lewis returned to the financial services industry with the fast growing Progressive Insurance Company where, as Regional Manager for the Northeast and Southwest, he was responsible for increasing sales results.  He moved to head the company’s newly developed Canadian initiative where sales and profits grew rapidly.  In 1983, Mr. Lewis moved to another fast growing insurance company, Capitol American Life Insurance Company, also of Cleveland, Ohio.  His initial responsibilities as Senior Vice President were to head the company’s administration and business operations where he quickly gained recognition for instituting a customer centered approach to the company’s operations, while maintaining cost-effective operational support.  In 1984, Mr. Lewis took over the reins of Capitol American’s Direct Sales Division, the most rapidly growing segment of the company.  In 1987, Mr. Lewis was promoted to President of Capitol Consumer Marketing where he became responsible for over one-third of the company’s overall sales.

In 1989, Mr. Lewis secured the financing for a new insurance venture and founded the Family Heritage Life Insurance Company of America.  Mr. Lewis built the company on the principles of service and integrity, and on the fundamental premise that those that help to build the company should have the opportunity to become owners in the company.  Today, every sales person at Family Heritage and every home office employee has the opportunity to earn stock as the company grows.  The company has grown at a compounded rate exceeding thirty percent annually since its inception, and Mr. Lewis has positioned the company for continued growth into the future by expanding the company’s territory, broadening the company’s product portfolio and constantly attracting new talent to the company’s home office operation.

Family Heritage Life – $1 Billion Assets (#2 to AFLAC – supplemental insurance) sold to Torchmark Corporation – 2012 large transaction.

Mr. Lewis completed his undergraduate work at the University of Kentucky in 1970 and holds an MBA from Xavier University.   In 2011, he was elected to the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics Alumni Hall of Fame representing his dedication and integrity in the business world and in the greater community.  And, in 2015, The University of Kentucky inducted Mr. Lewis into their Hall of Distinguished Alumni.

The University of Kentucky will be conferring a Doctorate of Humane Letters to Mr. Lewis at the May, 2019, Graduation.