The Horton Group – the insurance, employee benefits and risk advisory firm – appoints new practice leader and welcomes two further additions to the team. 

Tony Hopkins

Tony Hopkins, Welding & Gas Distributors Practice Leader

Tony Hopkins has been appointed the new Welding & Gas Distributors Practice Leader. In this role, Hopkins is responsible for providing innovative strategy and solutions to new and existing welding and gas clients. He will oversee a team of welding and gas insurance and safety specialists dedicated to driving down cost, work, and risks.

Hopkins’ predecessor, Ken Tidwell, will remain very active and continue to foster the great relationships with his clients which he’s built over the last 30-plus years of working with the welding and gas industry.

“This is a well-planned succession that has been in the works since Hopkins was brought to work in the industry – over the past ten years. I couldn’t be more proud of his development, industry involvement, and the value he brings to our clients. There isn’t a better person to take over the reins,” said Tidwell.

Ken Tidwell

Ken Tidwell

Tidwell’s sentiments are fully reflected by Hopkins’ description of his journey and mentorship experience with Ken.

“Tidwell is one of my favourite people in this universe. He has been an amazing mentor and more so; what he’s taught me over the years has been invaluable. This Practice Group was Tidwell’s vision from the start. Horton is now the largest provider of insurance and risk advisory services to the welding and gas industry in the country. This is a task that couldn’t have been achieved without superior planning, passion, and hard work. Tidwell’s energy is infectious; he’s never had more of it than he does now,” said Hopkins.

Ken and Margaret Tidwell have no immediate retirement plans at this time and will remain active with the Horton Group.

John Cappel

John Cappel

Joining the industry veterans will be Jon Cappel and Will Cray. Together, the team will be responsible for providing welding & gas clients with comprehensive, cost-effective and innovative solutions for their most complex, risk-related challenges.

“We’re so happy to add the energy and experience that Cappel and Cray bring to the table. The energy level within our welding and gas practice has never been higher alongside a very bright future,” said Hopkins.

Cappel has been at Horton for four years with some of his experience coming in the welding and gas industry. However, his future commitment to the industry will be enhanced and focused.

Will Cray

Will Cray

He said, “When any customer becomes a partner with Horton, they are going to receive industry-specific service of the highest quality, which goes beyond providing basic insurance. I am proud to be a part of Horton’s distinguished reputation, especially in the welding and gas sector.” 

Will Cray is one of Horton’s newest hired property and casualty agents and comes to the company with four years of insurance experience from Federated Insurance. Together, Cray and Cappel will expand new business development efforts, while also having client relationship responsibilities.