Safeco Insurance™ recognizes Larry James as a Community Hero

Seattle, Wash. (Aug. 23, 2011) — Safeco Insurance has named Laurens I. James, Jr. a Community Hero for his work with Visions of Excellence, Inc., Greer, S.C., which will receive a $5,000 donation from Safeco.

Each year Safeco celebrates local heroes who make a positive difference through its Agent Giving Program that’s designed to focus on three areas: education, health and safety, and civic engagement.

“Safeco applauds community heroes, like Larry, who share their gifts for giving and action,” said Brenda Mann Harrison, manager, Safeco Insurance Agent Giving Program.

James founded Visions of Excellence, Inc., some 20 years ago, with the goal of supporting local school teachers and students alike. The organization participates in events such as school supply drives, but is best known for creating and distributing teaching kits that help engage students by bringing other countries and periods of South Carolina and American History to life. The kits include hands-on items, posters and photos and books for teachers and students. Visions of Excellence also provides large library displays, including dinosaurs, American wildlife, and Civil War scenes that rotate between six elementary schools.

The program centers on arming teachers with interesting material to spark students' interest in subject matters they are studying. Visions of Excellence programs depend solely on community support—support that James has kept alive and growing since he founded the nonprofit. James' commitment to improving local education netted him the 2010 Citizenship and Service Award from the Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce.

Help a local hero do more

You can help James do more for Visions of Excellence – or any of the other Safeco Community Heroes – by participating in the “Vote for your favorite Safeco Community Hero” online event.

Take a look at the inspiring stories and photos of all the Safeco Community Heroes, then vote for your favorite one. The charity supported by the Safeco Community Hero receiving the most votes will get an additional $5,000 check from Safeco Insurance!

You can vote once per day until the contest ends 11 p.m. PDT, Aug. 29. You may vote only if you are age 13 or older.

About Safeco Insurance

In business since 1923 and based in Boston, Mass., Safeco Insurance sells personal automobile, homeowners and specialty products through a network of more than 10,000 independent insurance agencies throughout the United States. Safeco is a Liberty Mutual Insurance company.

Boston-based Liberty Mutual Insurance is a diversified insurer and the fifth largest property and casualty insurer in the U.S. based on 2015 direct written premium data as reported by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Liberty Mutual Insurance is ranked 73rd on the Fortune 100 list of largest U.S. corporations, based on 2015 revenue.

For more information about Safeco Insurance, go to

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