About the Agency

Gold Standard Since 1936

Established in 1936, The Elder Agency has developed into a full service Insurance and Real Estate Office. We offer all lines of insurance coverage and real estate services.


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Memory Lane

Stanley and Lysle

Stanley Elder with his brother and future business partner, Lysle Elder.

1936 – Elder Agency Opens First Office in Old Savings Bank Building

Stanley Elder, a Mutual and United of Omaha agent saw an opportunity to not only sell life and health insurance, but also to develop and provide all lines of insurance to meet the ever changing needs of his clients.

Stanley also ran for state senate during his tenure as representative.

1940s – Stanley Serves as State Representative for Michigan’s 109th District

Original Elder Agency Office Building

Elder Agency's original location.

1950s – Elder Agency Expand Their Vision

Shortly after the Elder Agency was established, Stanley’s brother Lysle joined the team and they expanded further into real estate and became a Detroit and Northern Savings and Loan Branch Office offering the full spectrum of services. The concept of being able to buy/sell a home, land, or business and finance it as well as insure it all under one roof was a vision the Elder Agency laid out to provide the best service assisting their clients that they possible could.

Brothers Sam (left) and Jim (right) Elder

1960s – Stanley’s Sons Sam & Jim Elder Join the Business

With life and health agents across the Upper Peninsula and branch offices now in Negaunee and later Ishpeming the agency continued to grow. In 1964 Stanley’s son Sam, and in 1968 his son Jim, joined the agency further contributing to the success and continued growth of the agency.

Brothers Sam and Jim were both raised in Marquette and graduated from Northern Michigan University and decided to each bring fresh ideas and outlooks to the vision of continuing the success laid out by their father Stanley and uncle Lysle. Sam joined the team after five years serving as a KC-135 Instructor Navigator in the Strategic Air Command during the Vietnam War. After graduation, Jim decided to continue his education in law school at Creighton University. Upon completing law school and passing the state bar exam Jim returned to the Elder Agency.

Jim Elder, second from left, stands with other local insurance leaders.

1970s – Elder Agency Establishes Their Footprint in Real Estate Development

Throughout the 1970s the Elder Agency expanded into real estate development including what is now the University Subdivision, formerly Elder Drive, a residential subdivision in Marquette. They also developed Ewing Park, a residential subdivision, and Ewing Plaza, a commercial subdivision, both in Chocolay Township.

1980s – Elder Agency Grows to Offer Services in 3 Locations Throughout Marquette County

Elder Agency's current office location.

1990s – Moved to Current Location and Acquired the Peter White Insurance Agency

2007 – Ryan Nummela Joined the Agency

Ryan becomes president/owner of Elder Agency

Jim (left) and Sam (right) Elder with new owner and president Ryan Nummela.

2017 – Ryan Nummela Becomes President/Owner of Elder Agency

Ryan will continue to focus on the Customer Experience that was created by Stanley in 1936 and has been our top priority ever since!   A strong emphasis on community involvement and treating everyone with respect and dignity.

The Elder Agency is a believer in building relationships with our clients, giving back to the community, and working together.   We are proud of where we live and who we get to share it with.