Celebrating Excellence in the Surety Industry
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Tiger Trust

Members of the Tiger Trust

For NASBP and SFAA members who persuade a private construction project owner or lender to require surety bonds on a project.

  1. Induction into the Tiger Trust is available to current (2023-2024) dues-paid members of SFAA or NASBP.
  2. Nominations may be made by the person seeking the Tiger Trust or from another party familiar with the facts of the situation.
  3. Applicants must complete the online nomination form. The nomination must demonstrate that the owner or lender of a specific construction project was persuaded to require surety bonds due to the candidate’s personal efforts or influence. The applicant must include details of how he or she convinced the owner or lender to require a bond along with documentation from the owner or lender on official letterhead verifying the candidate’s role in persuading the owner or lender. (Submit documentation via the online nomination form or e-mail to Brian Muhlbach.
  4. NASBP and SFAA may use materials or information from the entries to promote surety bonds in joint promotional materials, as well as SFAA and NASBP publications and websites.
  5. Entries must be received online no later than Friday, March 8, 2024. (Documentation will be accepted separately from the online nomination form via e-mail but must be received no later than March 8, 2024.)
  6. For questions contact Brian Muhlbach.





Kevin Garrity – Kevin Garrity of NFP in Albany, NY, was awarded the Tiger Trust award for succeeding in persuading a college to require a performance bond on a $35 million dollar construction project at the college. He met with the college’s Risk Officer and VP of Finance to discuss the differences between SDI and a performance bond, and the leaders decided that the performance bond would work better for the owner (the college), which was working with multiple stakeholders.


No Inductees


No Inductees


Deborah Anderson — Deborah Anderson of INSURICA Southwest in Phoenix, AZ, was awarded the Tiger Trust award for her success in persuading the equity investors/developers of a new industrial warehouse development project to move forward with bonding the approximately $38 million construction contract, relating the advantages to the project of bonds, including that a filed payment bond would avert the imposition of mechanics’ liens against the property.


Mark Munekawa — Mark Munekawa of Woodruff-Sawyer & Co. in San Francisco, CA was awarded the Tiger Trust Award for his diligence in convincing his client to bond the general contractor on a $79 million project. The client obtained performance and payment bonds for the full amount of the project, and only a few weeks later, the client came back for subdivision bonds for another project.


Joshua A. Etemadi — Joshua A. Etemadi of Construction Bonds Inc. — A Division of Murray Securus, received the 2018 Tiger Trust Award for his efforts in convincing an owner’s representative of a private estate in Rhinebeck, NY, to mandate performance and payment bonds for the renovation of a historic skylight, a $1.2 million dollar project. He explained the advantages of bonding the contract, including that, in the event of a default, the surety can work with the owner to find a suitable replacement contractor, as this project involved specialized work. Through his contact with the owner representative and explanation of bond characteristics in detail, Etemadi was able to persuade the private project owner to require bonds.


Howard Cowan — Cowan of Acrisure dba Cowan-Hill Bonding Agency, accepted the prestigious NASBP and SFAA-sponsored surety industry 2017 Tiger Trust Award for being instrumental in ensuring surety requirements for the construction of the Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences for the Lubbock Entertainment and Performing Arts Association, a non-profit organization. This is the second time Cowan has received the Tiger Trust Award.


Mike Battenfield — Mike persuaded the Board of Directors of the Nautilus Condominium to require a performance bond for their construction project for concrete repairs and water-proofing in their under-building parking garage. The Board then voted and approved that all future construction contracts must be bonded as well. Additionally, Mike convinced the neighboring condo boards to also require bonding on future construction contracts.


John Bustard – John persuaded the Kapi‘olani Medical Center for Women & Children to require Treasury-listed bonds as part of two of its projects—a new parking garage and a newborn and pediatric intensive care unit. The contracts together totaled $160 million. In addition, the Medical Center followed John’s recommendation to require a bid bond on the competitively bid New Bingham Parking Garage project.

Mary Alice McNamara, Jacob Fulmer, and Stan Halliday – Rating agencies are critical players in P3 finance and many in the surety industry have been working to educate them about our product and its value, and learn of their concerns. Mary Alice, Jacob, and Stan took this a step further with great success. Not only did they meet with those agencies and use real examples of just how surety bonds work in a default situation, but Travelers then developed an Expedited Dispute Resolution Bond Form that contains no liquidity provision (which is the previously preferred form of performance security on P3 projects), but does assure prompt response in the event of a declaration of default. As a result of their efforts, the surety industry will benefit from 100% bonds on two large P3 projects, totaling over $1.25 billion in construction value, the Indianapolis Justice Center and the Pennsylvania Bridges Rehabilitation Project. Three leading sureties will participate on these bonds. The use of bonds on these projects also sets a strong precedence for the use of bonds on future P3 projects.


Erle Benton (a member of the Surety Association of Kansas City) earned the Tiger Trust. He worked to require that the general contractors working on a project for the Blue Valley School District in Overland Park, KS, secure subcontract bonds from their mechanical, plumbing, HVAC, masonry, and roofing subcontractors. The school district agreed with Mr. Benton’s recommendations, and the first project bid and contracted under this new arrangement occurred in May 2013 with a total contract price of $15,341,000.