The Insurance Record dates back to November 1934, during the Great Depression. In the midst of a journalism career as an Associated Press reporter and insurance editor at the Chicago Journal of Commerce, John C. Leslie determined that Texas needed a good insurance trade journal. Returning to Dallas, he founded the magazine with start-up capital borrowed against his mother’s jewelry. Leslie originally named the publication The Southwest Insurer but changed it to The Insurance Record in 1945.
The business was a family affair from the beginning, with brother Hamill N. Leslie joining the staff. Later, John’s wife Ollie Clay Leslie, came on board. Children Carol Leslie Hargis and John H. Leslie joined full time following their college careers. When the elder John Leslie died in 1975, Mrs. Leslie took on the role of publisher and continued publication. Carol’s husband Glen E. Hargis joined the staff in 1981. John’s wife Kathy Leslie joined the staff from 1987-1998 and again in 2011. Mrs. Leslie died in 2004. In 1995, the magazine joined forces with insurance publisher Standard Publishing Corp. of Boston, which boasts some 145 years in business. In 2011, the family bought back control of The Insurance Record from Standard and returned the full operation back to its Texas roots.
While insurance cycles rise and fall and recessions come and go, The Insurance Record continues to serve its niche with reliable information for the Texas insurance industry. Though well into its eighth decade, The Insurance Record continues to grow and change to respond to reader demands and remains relevant in our changing times.