Merit Insurance

About Us

Merit Insurance has provided stable, flexible coverage options and superior customer service since 1936 and pride ourselves on always matching the unique needs of our clients. Our professionals are experts in their fields and work together as a cohesive team to cover you as effectively as possible

Our Team

Our team is comprised of effective and efficient professionals with years of experience in their fields. We are committed to excellent customer service and providing a positive, fulfilling experience that meets your needs.

Leadership Team

Additional Staff

Christine A. Kanuch

Commercial Lines Manager

Donna Mladina

Commercial Lines Representative

Michelle DiLeonardo

Commercial Lines Representative

Jessica Resto

Commercial Lines Representative

Alex DeBiase

Commercial Lines Representative

Sheila DelPrete

Commercial Lines Representative

Jamie Lynes

Commercial Lines Representative

Joan B. Vancho

Personal Lines Manager

Laurie J. Mucherino

Personal Lines Representative

Vicky Wood

Personal Lines Representative

Marlene A. Leja

Claims Manager

Meghan White


Our History

Merit Insurance founded in 1950 by Bridgeport area businessmen Herman Isaacs, Bill Flynn, and Thomas Minogue as they felt there was an opportunity for success with an insurance agency owned by three well-known individuals in the community.

William Mullane, who recently retired from the Navy and Rita Kanuch, a Hartford Insurance Stenographer were hired as Merit’s first employees in 1951. Merit Insurance was located in the City Savings Bank in downtown Bridgeport. In 1954, the founders of Merit purchased another local insurance agency, The Tom Rodgers’ Agency, which had been in existence since 1936.

In 1972, Merit hired William Carroll, who was also very well-known and actively involved in Greater Bridgeport in a variety of areas-sports, politics, charitable and civic organizations. It was under his leadership that Merit began to transform itself from a small personal lines company to a multi-faceted insurance agency.

In the early 1990’s Jim Benson and Sean Carroll were hired and soon thereafter became partners in Merit. Their influence on the local and national insurance scene as well as their extremely active involvement in the community, began to grow the company to its primary focus of today- which is commercial insurance. Two other key personnel that joined Merit in the mid 1990’s who helped specialize in certain areas of insurance were Bob Caldwell and Jim Tomchik.

Merit Insurance has evolved into a well-respected firm that employs 28 people in two locations which are in Shelton and Bridgeport, Connecticut. Most of Merit’s employees have been with the firm for over 15 years and their loyalty, hard work, and commitment to excellence has allowed Merit to thrive. Merit is consistently recognized in both the insurance industry as well as the local community for all of its achievements. Merit Insurance is a past recipient of the Greater Bridgeport Regional Business Council “Business of the Year”.

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Community Service

Merit Insurance has always believed in the value of giving back to the community. Our commitment to community service has always been set forth by Merit’s ownership. Currently, Sean Carroll and Jim Benson proudly carry on that tradition. 

Sean currently runs the Challenger Baseball program for children with mental and physical disabilities. He also serves as the Co- Chair for the Kennedy Center annual golf tournament and is one of the founding members of F.O.C.U.S., a non-profit dedicated to raise money to benefit youth medical causes. Sean is a long-time member of the St. Patrick’s scholarship committee. Jim Benson is also very active in community service.  Jim was appointed ambassador for the Sterling House, a non-profit organization located in Stratford, CT. Jim is also involved in the annual Tommy Mac 5K – fundraiser for CT Burn Foundation, of which Merit is a premier sponsor. 

This culture has been spread throughout the company to the employees of Merit, who do their part in supporting various charities and non-profits throughout the Greater Bridgeport area. These organizations include: Bridgeport Hospital Foundation, Saint Vincent’s Hospital, United Methodist Homes, Walter Camp Foundation, Barnum Festival, C.E.S. Foundation, Fairfield University, Town of Trumbull Youth Programs, Sheehan Center, Center for Family Justice, Connecticut Zoological Society, McGivney Center, Continuum of Care, Klein Memorial Auditorium, Bridgehouse.

Supporting our community is near and dear to our hearts, and we’re proud to contribute to these wonderful organizations. 

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