In Remembrance

John B. "Jack" Manus

NASBP was saddened to learn of the passing of NASBP activist John B. “Jack” Manus, 84, who passed away June 7, 2017 at the VA Medical Center in Louisville, KY. Jack and his good friend, Tom Smith, Vice President of the NASBP Member firm of Smith Manus in Louisville, KY, founded the Smith Manus Agency in 1979. Prior to that, Jack was associated with the Fireman’s Fund and the Fidelity and Deposit Insurance Company of Maryland. Jack was born in New Albany and was an Air Force Veteran of the Korean War. 

Tom Smith said he met Jack in Cleveland, OH in 1962. Smith said: "We worked side-by-side for Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company for several years, and we both ultimately ended up in Louisville, KY working for different companies. We formed Smith Manus in 1979. He was well respected in the surety industry in Indiana and Kentucky. He retired several years ago, but continued to come into the office to share his wisdom and wit until recently. Like most of us, Jack made a number of good friends in the surety business and enjoyed working with a number of long-time clients. All of us will miss his presence." 

NASBP Past President Todd Loehnert, who is President of L A Surety Solutions in Louisville, KY, said, “Jack was a good friend and a consummate surety professional. In 1979, he co-founded (with Tom Smith) the Smith-Manus Agency of Louisville, KY. Jack was a mentor to me and a significant and positive influence on not only my career but many others in the industry.” 

Jack was preceded in death by his parents, Mildred and John Leo Manus. He is survived by his wife, Mary Jane Manus; two daughters, Sue Ellen Stauble (Mark) and Cheryl Gettelfinger (Doug); his son, Mark Manus (Mary); his brother, Steve Manus (Barbara); two sisters, Connie Fox and Susan White; five grandchildren, Janet Reusch (Eric), Jeff Stauble (Jessica), Kathleen Gettelfinger (Elliot), Laura Gettelfinger and Samantha Manus; and five great grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held June 10 at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church. Visitation was held at the Market Street Chapel of Seabrook Dieckmann & Naville. The family suggests that memorial contributions be made to the American Heart Association.

To view an obituary for Jack, click here. Consider posting a condolence message to Jack's family here

William E. "Ted" French

It is with deep sadness that NASBP announces the passing of NASBP activist William E. "Ted" French of the Member firm of the Bottrell Agency in MS. Ted passed away at age 79 on Tuesday, April 25, 2017, at St. Catherine's Village in Madison, MS.

In 1999, NASBP awarded 
Ted the Bruce T. Wallace Award. Ted had served as Chairman of NASBP Government Affairs Committee, NASBP Representative to The Road Information Program (TRIP), Chairman for NASBP SuretyPAC, NASBP Chairman of the Associated General Contractors (AGC) Liaison Committee, and Chairman of NASBP Professional Standards Committee. He also served on the Advisory Councils of the Aetna Casualty Company, Washington International, and the United States Fidelity and Guaranty Surety. 

Ted fought to enact the Graham Leach Bill, which helped abolish the Glass Stegall Act and allowed commercial banks and insurance companies to merge. Dan Bottrell's merger with Trustmark was the first of its kind under this new law. Following the merger, Ted remained as President of The Bottrell Agency and served as President of Trustmark Insurance Agency and a Senior Vice President of Trustmark National Bank. In 2001 he became President Emeritus of The Bottrell Agency, serving in that capacity until his retirement, January 31, 2003.

Ted was the recipient of the Mississippi Insurance Women's "Businessman of the Year Award" in 1999. He was inducted into the Mississippi State University Insurance Hall of Fame in 2003, and in 2007 the "William E. (Ted) French Scholarship" for the School of Insurance at Mississippi State University was established by The Bottrell Agency. He was involved in several community and business organizations, including the Mississippi Road Builders Association and TRIP.  

Tom Gentile of the NASBP Member firm Turner Insurance and Bonding, Co. of Montgomery, AL said, "Ted was one of the first men I met in the organization, and he was a true Southern gentleman and a stalwart in the surety business, especially in Mississippi."  

Paul Sims, Underwriting Director of the NASBP Affiliate CNA Surety in Nashville, TN, said he worked and traveled with Ted in the 1980’s when he was with USF&G (then St. Paul, then Travelers) in Mississippi.  Sims said, "I considered him a close business associate and counted he and his wife, Esther, as good friends. We visited each other’s homes, ate meals together, and watched their kids grow up. He understood financials and WIP’s, underwriting needs and the surety relationship, but advocated strongly for his clients as needed. Ted was an imposing figure and his stare-down was incredible. You knew you’d done wrong, in his opinion, when you got the “Ted French look.” Ted had a personal  requirement to never appear overly prosperous in the eye of the client. If you flew to visit a client and rented a car, the rental car was never large or flashy; the restaurants you visited were never “over the top,” just solid middle-of-the-road establishments. This trait always seemed to serve him well. He was respected and well-liked by all of his business contacts and friends."

The son of William Henry French, Jr., and Ruth Hearon French of Byhalia, Mississippi, Ted was born July 14, 1937, in Memphis, TN. Ted graduated from Byhalia High School, Byhalia, Mississippi, in 1955. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Mississippi State University in 1959 and was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity. Fallowing graduation he served in the United States Air Force. He later attended The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania for the NALSA-Wharton Forum.

On February 23, 1963, Ted married Esther Jones Doughtie of Memphis. They were the parents of three children, William Edward French Jr., who died at seven days of age; William Henry French, III, and Esther Doughtie French. In 1959 he began his career in the insurance industry becoming associated with the Memphis branch office of the Fidelity and Deposit Company of Maryland. In 1968 he joined the Barksdale Bonding and Insurance Agency in Jackson, Mississippi. Two years later he joined the Dan Bottrell Agency where he enjoyed success in the surety industry for the next 32 years. In 1993 Ted became President of the Bottrell Agency.

Ted was preceded in death by his parents, his aunt and uncle, Gordon and Frances French Houston, and his infant son. Survivors include: his wife of 54 years, Esther Doughtie French; son, William Henry French III and wife Keelan Muir French of Memphis, Tennessee; and daughter, Esther French Virden and husband, Robert Brittain (Britt) Virden of Greenville, Mississippi. "Granddaddy" is also survived by grandchildren, Esther Alice (Allie) Virden, Virginia French Virden, and Robert Brittain Virden, Jr. of Greenville, Mississippi; and William Edward French, III, Kaylan Elizabeth French and Katherine Grace French of Memphis. Other survivors include his brothers, Mark Henry French and wife, Mary, of Nashville, Tennessee; and James Austin French and wife, Belinda, of Columbia, Tennessee, and their families.

A visitation and funeral service were held in April at St. James' Episcopal Church in Jackson, MS. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be made to the William Edward (Ted) French Scholarship Fund, Mississippi State University Foundation, P.O. Box 6149, Mississippi State, MS 39762; or St. James' Episcopal Church, 3921 Oak Ridge Drive, Jackson, MS 39216; or a charity of your choice

To view an obituary for Ted, click here. Consider posting a condolence message to Ted's family at

NASBP wanted to make the membership aware also of the passing of two parents of members of the NASBP community.  

Martha Bustard

Martha Bustard, mother of NASBP Second Vice President John N. Bustard of King & Neel in Honolulu, HI, passed away on June 7 at age 100 in Medford, OR. 

Emmanuel Anthony Korson 

Emmanuel Anthony Korson, father of NASBP Managing Director, Operations, Finance, and Membership Services, Koula Korson, passed away on June 16 at age 91 in Bethesda, MD.      

Please join the NASBP Leadership and staff in expressing our deepest sympathies to the families during this difficult time.