Symetra Life Insurance, a subsidiary of Symetra Financial, has appointed a new sales leader for its national accounts and expanded its retirement and life insurance products with five new regional vice presidents.

Symetra appointed John Richter as new vice president of National Accounts, with responsibility for managing the distributor relationships that drive the majority of company’s life insurance and annuity sales, including major bank partners, national brokerages and large general agencies.

Most recently, Richter was head of key accounts for the Retirement Income business at MassMutual Financial Group. Before MassMutual, he spent nearly 10 years at ING, where he introduced ING annuity distribution in the bank channel.

In order to better cover the key markets, Symetra has also increased the size of its field wholesaling force and carved out smaller territories. In support of this, the company has hired five new regional vice presidents who will join in February 2011. These new external wholesalers will represent Symetra’s life insurance and annuity product portfolio with financial planners territories.

Jeremy Alyea will cover the Michigan territory. He will join Symetra from RiverSource Annuities, where he served as a regional vice president in the bank, wirehouse and broker-dealer division.

David Frey will cover Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire. He will join Symetra from Northstar Financial Companies, where he was a partner and financial advisor.

Michael Hickey will be responsible for Delaware, Pennsylvania territory. Hickey is an experienced annuity and life insurance sales professional, having held external wholesaling positions at American General Life Companies, MassMutual Financial Group, and Phoenix Life Insurance.

Stephanie Schuler will cover Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah Territory. She will bring 10 years of experience as an external and internal wholesaler at RiverSource Distributors, Wood Logan (John Hancock) and Janus International.

Scott Talley will cover New Jersey Territory. He will join from ING, where he has been responsible for sales of ING’s annuity product line to advisors in the bank channel.

Symetra executive vice president of Life and Retirement sales Richard LaVoice said that John’s professional background makes him an ideal fit for this key sales leadership role

"Jeremy, David, Michael, Stephanie and Scott are proven sales performers. All were consistently ranked among the top wholesalers in their previous companies. They know their territories, and they know how to sell financial products. We look forward to continuing to build out our external wholesaling team and delivering more personalized support to our partners in major markets," LaVoice said.