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Jax Daily Record Thursday, Mar. 7, 200212:00 PM EST

Profile: Thomas "Ty" Petway, IV

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Ty Petway is the new senior vice president of corporate relations for Zurich Insurance Services, Inc. He’s the son of Tom Petway, the local businessman who’s the Jacksonville Jaguars’ co-owner as well as majority stockholder in Zurich.

WHAT DOES YOUR POSITION INVOLVE?

“I am in charge of marketing our services to other Zurich entities. Zurich and Zurich Insurance are two different companies. Zurich North America is our customer. We’re behind the scenes. I try to keep the relationship on a positive note and find opportunities to help them, plus doing things in the community to promote Zurich Insurance throughout Jacksonville.”

EXAMPLES OF PROMOTIONAL ACTIVITIES

Participation in the Corporate Challenge (a three-mile downtown run,) United Way drives and volunteering in soup kitchens are the main ways the company and its employees boost their image.

WHAT SERVICES DOES YOUR COMPANY PROVIDE?

“We do Internet service, policy support, billing, web support and endorsement.”

WHAT’S REWARDING ABOUT THE JOB?

“The everyday changes — coming in and finding something different. You never know what’s going to happen next.”

WHAT CHALLENGES DO YOU FACE?

“Growing our roles within the Zurich family and expanding operations into Zurich entities.”

WHERE DID YOU GO TO SCHOOL?

Western State College in Gunnison, Colo. He earned degrees in communications and business management.

WHY CHOOSE THESE MAJORS?

“I like dealing with people. I wanted to be out talking to people instead of standing behind a desk all day. I figured it would be a good package to have a double major.”

WHAT SHOULD JACKSONVILLE INDUSTRY STRIVE FOR?

“Obviously, Jacksonville is growing by leaps and bounds. The business community needs to stay focused and create a more metropolitan downtown. Downtown is just 9-5 now. I’m not trying to spearhead anything; it’s just what I would like to see happen.”

HOMETOWN

Jacksonville.

CURRENT RESIDENCE

Neptune Beach.

WHY GO INTO INSURANCE LIKE YOUR FATHER?

“I worked here growing up. When I graduated from college, my father asked me to join the company. It was an opportunity to work with family. I started at the lowest level and worked my way up. I’ve been with the company six years and have seen it go from 80 to 350 employees.”

CONSIDERING YOUR FATHER’S POLITICAL AGENDA OVER THE YEARS, DO YOU HAVE ANY POLITICAL ASPIRATIONS?

“No. It doesn’t appeal to me. I’m following in his footsteps by staying out of it. People get too involved in your personal life. I will probably lend my support to Mike Weinstein’s [mayoral] campaign at some point.”

PETWAY PREFERENCES

Fishing and surfing, especially in Maui, top Petway’s list of fun things to do. He also enjoys dining at Old Siam or watching the classic war film, “Apocalypse Now.”

EVER BUMPED INTO A CELEBRITY?

“I met Lenny Kravitz outside a club in New York. It was pretty low-key. We talked for a few minutes. I wasn’t star-struck or anything.”

WHO’S YOUR HERO?

“My late uncle, Earl Hadlow. He was a lawyer with the Barnett Bank and had his own firm. He was a brilliant person that I always looked up to.”

—by Monica Chamness

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