Keeping community at the center
Image: Courtesy of Nick Budor.
On Wall Street in the winding village of Vail, Colorado, tucked in between the slopes and shops of this vibrant resort town, you will find the spot where Wall Street Insurance was founded over 30 years ago. Since 1984, this full-service agency has focused on creating personalized insurance portfolios with a team of specialized agents.
Today, the agency is situated slightly west from its original location in Edwards, Colorado. In the last three decades, they’ve grown to serve a diverse and even international client base. What hasn’t changed is their people-first mentality and community focus. We spoke with Nick Budor, Owner and Agent at Wall Street, about the path the business has taken and their recent growth.
Finding the right road
A lawyer by trade, Nick brings a different viewpoint to Wall Street. He practiced law for 15 years, bringing experience in everything from merger and acquisitions, to large company representation, to serving as in-house general counsel for both private and public companies. As a lawyer, he managed insurance from the inside out, forging relationships within the insurance community and working with sophisticated portfolios and investors.
“What I loved about my law practice was counseling people and managing risk. That’s what insurance is, and that’s what got me thinking about transitioning to business ownership and being part of an agency full-time,” Nick explains. A true people person with a unique perspective, he reflects, “I came into it fresh, with good research and due diligence.” At Wall Street, Nick has grown the agency’s staff to help clients manage commercial and personal insurance and expanded to become one of the largest independent agencies in the area.
Caring for clients
Wall Street maintains a strong local footprint, with many of their clients in the Vail Valley and greater Colorado. At the same time, they are licensed coast to coast, offering the ability to serve clients with homes and other personal assets or business interests across the country.
The agency offers home and contents insurance, vehicle insurance, aircraft insurance, boat and personal watercraft insurance, collectibles insurance, umbrella liability insurance, business insurance and more. Especially important in a region where many residents vacation, Wall Street also deeply understands insurance for second homes, as well as condo and rental property owners.
With skiing, biking, fishing, rafting and world-class restaurants and shopping, this area of the Rockies has become a world-renowned destination for adventure seekers and relaxers alike. “We’re introduced to many of our clients through real estate agents when they are buying a second home in the area,” Nick notes, “It’s especially fun to see people who start as secondary homeowners fall in love with the area and eventually move here full-time.”
The staff at Wall Street Insurance is focused on helping clients tailor their insurance portfolios to their unique needs. As is the case with many clients who have multiple residences or complex assets, navigating insurance can be complicated. He explains,
“I endeavor to be both a professional counselor and a trusted partner for clients in risk management decisions.”
Sometimes, he explains, clients don’t realize that insurance that may have worked for them earlier in their life no longer fits their current situation. That’s where Nick’s team comes in, helping clients evaluate their risks and thoughtfully plan the right coverage for them.
When Nick isn’t in the office, he also teaches classes on insurance at the law schools at both University of Michigan and the University of Colorado Boulder. “I always tell my students, it’s about trying to make sure people are appropriately protected,” he starts. In a world where insurance is often marketed with a strictly money-saving mindset, Nick explains that his goal is to help clients see the big picture. “What people forget is that insurance is there to protect some of the biggest potential losses of your life.” It’s important, he explains, for clients to find a partner in their insurance agent that helps them achieve good value, but also makes the conversation about much more than that.
“It’s about making sure you have coverage at the most cost-effective price point,” he says. “Whether they’re with Wall Street or someone else, we care about helping make sure people are with the best agent possible because it leads to the best outcome.” To the team at Wall Street, that means someone who understands and cares about their interests.
Community roots run deep
Wall Street Insurance wasn’t just founded in the Vail area; it’s truly a part of the fabric of the community. From the beginning, community involvement has been a cornerstone of the agency.
Today, Wall Street takes part in many events, from sponsoring local youth ski and racing programs, to supporting events from the acclaimed Bravo! Vail Music Festival to the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo. The team is passionate about taking part. “From a personal standpoint, when my family and I moved here, one of the conscious decisions I made was to be someone who shows up and is a part of all the things that matter to the community,” he notes.
Nick describes the town as a melting pot, a place where people enjoy coming together. “It’s the relationships that keep me going in everything that I do,” he says, paralleling the connections he creates with clients to the relationship the agency has with the greater community. For the team at Wall Street, the time and energy invested here is well worth the effort. Nick adds,
“This community is something special. We love what is today and want to make sure that it lives on generation after generation.”
Bringing it together with Berkley One
Lately, the team at Wall Street has had something new to look forward to, as they have expanded their offering to a new market with Berkley One, a Berkley Company. With a focus on presenting his clients with the best choices available, Nick was excited to introduce Berkley One as a new personal insurance provider for clients.
“They have a great foundation for what they’re building,” Nick said of the Berkley One team. He also connected with Berkley One’s approach to launching their business. “A launch can be done two ways. You can tell people, ‘here is how we will do it,’ or you can be flexible and pragmatic, doing the work ahead of time but also wanting to learn and get smarter every day.” For Wall Street and Berkley One, the possibilities to grow together in taking the second approach were meaningful. Nick explains,
“It opens up a new opportunity and we’re excited to see where it can go. If we can be successful together, everyone wins.”
Looking back over the course of his professional career and thinking about the future, Nick concludes, “I’ve done a lot of things in my career and had some really neat professional experiences, but I’m constantly surprised how rewarding it is to have our agency be a small but important part of the amazing Vail community.” When you find a job you love, he proves, you really never have to work a day in your life.
Wall Street Insurance offers Home and Contents Insurance, Auto Insurance, Aircraft Insurance, Boats and Personal Watercraft, Umbrella Liability Insurance, and all types of Business Insurance. The agency is based in Edwards, Colorado.