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CANTON, Ohio (Sept. 21, 2011)

Former AVMA President Dr. Mary Beth Leininger Joins Pet Insurance Provider Hartville Group

As Vice President of Veterinary Relations, Dr. Leininger will enhance communication within the veterinary community for Hartville and ASPCA Pet Health Insurance

The Hartville Group Inc., together with its subsidiary Petsmarketing Insurance.com Agency, Inc., one of the nation’s leading pet insurance providers, has named Mary Beth Leininger, DVM, Vice President of Veterinary Relations. In this role, Dr. Leininger will expand Hartville’s efforts to reach out to veterinarians and their clients to promote the value and benefits of pet health insurance, including the Hartville Group’s ASPCA Pet Health Insurance program.

One of the most recognized names within the veterinary community, Dr. Leininger was the first woman elected President of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) from 1996 to 1997.

“We’re excited to welcome Dr. Leininger to our team,” said Hartville CEO Dennis Rushovich. “As our company continues to evolve, Dr. Leininger will play an important role in informing the veterinary industry about ASPCA Pet Health Insurance and our company. Adding Dr. Leininger to our team expands our opportunities to communicate the value of our pet insurance programs within the veterinary community and, ultimately, to veterinary consumers.”

For nearly 30 years, Dr. Leininger co‐owned a successful, AAHA‐accredited companion animal practice in Plymouth, Mich. During that time, she helped establish one of the first collaborative veterinary emergency facilities in the Midwest and served her community and her profession in many roles, including as President of both the Southeastern Michigan Veterinary Medical Association and the Michigan Veterinary Medical Association. Following her years in private practice and her term as AVMA President, Dr. Leininger joined Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc. as Director, Professional Affairs for 10 years. She recently completed nearly two years’ work as a consultant with the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges as Project Manager for the North American Veterinary Medical Education Consortium (NAVMEC), a collaborative national initiative to improve professional education.

“Pet insurance is an important way for families to afford the quality care for their beloved pets that all veterinarians work so hard to provide,” Dr. Leininger said. “I believe that with support from veterinarians pet insurance will significantly help the veterinary profession and improve care for pets while leaving important treatment decisions in the hands of veterinarians and their clients.

“I chose to join the Hartville Group because the company and its ASPCA Pet Health Insurance program are very well positioned both to serve the needs of veterinary clients and to deepen the positive impact of pet insurance in veterinary practices,” Dr. Leininger said.

Founded in 1997, the Hartville Group is the second oldest and second largest pet insurance provider in the U.S. Hartville also is the only strategic partner for pet insurance with the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®). Established in 2006, this relationship paved the way for Hartville to develop and launch the ASPCA Pet Health Insurance program.

Since then, the pet insurance program has grown substantially, with tens of thousands of veterinary practices across the country distributing information about ASPCA Pet Health Insurance to their clients.

In her role at Hartville, Dr. Leininger will be responsible for expanding these avenues to reach pet insurance customers through U.S. veterinary practices. She will be at the forefront of Hartville’s outreach efforts within the veterinary community, including participation with national and regional associations, conventions, and educational institutions.

“With her extensive experience and leadership in the veterinary community, Dr. Leininger is uniquely positioned to advance our pet insurance plans among veterinary practices and their clients while also providing a valuable perspective to the executive and field teams within the company,” Mr. Rushovich said.

“I’ve devoted much of my career to advocating issues that are paramount to the veterinary profession as a whole,” Dr. Leininger said. “I see pet insurance as an important concept for veterinarians to support because it helps lessen cost as a factor in treatment decisions, especially in these challenging economic times.”

About Hartville Group, Inc.

Based in Canton, Ohio, the Hartville Group, Inc.'s subsidiary agency, was founded in 1997 and is one of the largest providers of pet health insurance in the U.S. under the brand names ASPCA Pet Health Insurance, Hartville Pet Insurance and Petshealth Care Plan. Hartville Group, Inc. and Petsmarketing Insurance.com Agency, Inc. are individually or collectively referred to as Hartville Group or Hartville. Hartville Group developed ASPCA Pet Health Insurance through a strategic partnership with the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®). Hartville Group’s Petsmarketing Insurance.com Agency, Inc. subsidiary is authorized to provide property and casualty insurance in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. The pet insurance programs are underwritten by the United States Fire Insurance Company. For more information about the Hartville Group, visit www.hartvillegroup.com. For more information about ASPCA Pet Health Insurance, visit www.aspcapetinsurance.com.


Media Contact:
Lisa Hockensmith
Hartville Group Inc.
330-484-9746
Cell: 330-309-2233
Lisa.h@hartvillegroup.com