An insurance agent with almost 50 years of experience at two agencies in Damariscotta will retire Sept. 14.
Pat Nichols is a licensed property/casualty agent and customer service representative with Chapman & Chapman Insurance, at 108 Main St., where she has worked for almost 26 years.
A Damariscotta native who now lives in Nobleboro, Nichols started her career with the Glidden Insurance Agency on Main Street at the age of 17. She was a junior at Lincoln Academy, where she took business classes.
At the time, insurance agents did not require licensure; employees would work under an agency’s license. Nichols became a licensed agent in 1988 and has kept up with industry changes through ongoing education.
Her job duties include creating quotes for new customers and taking care of insurance claims for houses, cars, boats, and more.
“I think my main goal, what I wanted to do, was to help people understand insurance and to offer them the protection they needed,” Nichols said of why she stayed in the business so long. “I wanted to make sure they were adequately protected in case of a claim.”
She said she will miss helping people and knowing her customers on a personal level.
“My family calls me the fixer … I think that’s what I liked best about it. I really got a great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when I could help people get what they needed for coverage,” Nichols said.
Nichols has 30-plus years of relationships with some of the clients she has worked with since the days of the Glidden Insurance Agency, which closed years ago.
During retirement, she wants to spend more time with her four grandchildren, volunteer, and possibly work at shops in downtown Damariscotta.
Kathy Childress, operations manager for Chapman & Chapman, said Nichols’ co-workers have been brainstorming retirement activities for Nichols, writing ideas on slips of paper and putting them in a jar.
“I’ve worked with Pat for 26 years, so her leaving is going to be a big hole for all of us,” Childress said. “I’ve never worked with anybody that long.”