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Markel Style Award: Jeff Lewis

Posted on June 28, 2024 by Katie Meehan

In an industry that often operates behind the scenes yet is crucial to our safety and security, recognition for exceptional work can sometimes be rare. However, Jeff Lewis, the Vice President of Inspections and Learning and Development has recently been honored with the Markel Style Award, a testament to his dedication, hard work, and significant contributions to our organization and industry.

The Markel Style Award is no ordinary accolade. It is rooted in a philosophy that emphasizes hard work, a zealous pursuit of excellence, spontaneity, flexibility, and a sense of humor. These principles, encapsulated in the 214 words of the Markel Style statement, reflect a commitment to fostering an environment where employees can thrive and excel. VSC’s values mirror the Markel Style in many ways, emphasizing hard work and excellence. President and CEO, Tommy Clements shared how this recognition highlights the VSC mission:

“His passion is to train and grow not only our current team, but to also work to develop the next generation for our industry. We appreciate all Jeff does for VSC and congratulate him on receiving a Markel Style Award.” – Dumas Garrett, Chief Operating Officer

“Jeff’s commitment to the life safety industry makes him the perfect ambassador to communicate the benefits of a career within it. He lives the Markel Style, and we are thrilled that he has been recognized for it with this award.” – Tommy Clements, President and Chief Executive Officer

Upon receiving the award, Lewis expressed his profound humility and appreciation for this recognition. “To me, it is humbling when you consider what the 214 words that make up the Markel Style statement mean. I like that the Markel approach is one of spontaneity and flexibility. Flexibility has been a key in the approach that has made me successful.”

Jeff was inspired by his experience at the awards ceremony, specifically the humility and camaraderie among the other winners. “There was so much about each of the other style winners that struck me. The number one thing is that each was so humble and wanted to congratulate the other winners. Each had something inspiring to share. It was such a tremendous honor to be there amongst them.” Jeff was intrigued by how diverse the winners were; some being very quiet and others more outgoing and funnier.

Jeff’s journey in the industry has been marked by his relentless pursuit of excellence and his ability to adapt and thrive as our industry grows and changes. When asked what it was like being recognized at the 2024 Markel Reunion, Lewis replied, “To think that a company took a moment during their stakeholder meeting to recognize employees that exhibit the Markel Style really reinforced that it is truly important to them. 

Reflecting on his career, Jeff shared the challenges he faced in elevating the status of inspections within the industry. “The biggest challenge was that when I entered the industry, inspections were not a certified nor respected part of the business to be in. It took a lot of work and flexibility to help build this side of the industry into what it is today.” His efforts have not only contributed to the industry’s growth but also paved the way for future generations to succeed.

Jeff’s advice to aspiring professionals is straightforward yet profound: “Become an expert in what you do. Learn and then apply what you have learned to achieve mastery. Pay attention to the details. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and learn from them.” As Vice President of Learning and Development, Jeff is passionate about developing the next generation of our organization and industry. He has spearheaded the effort to offer Virginia high school students a Fire Protection program as part of Career Technical Education in the 2025-2026 school year. 

As Jeff Lewis continues to inspire and lead within VSC Fire and Security, his recognition with the Markel Style Award stands as an example of what dedication, flexibility, and the pursuit of excellence can achieve. It not only honors his past contributions but also sets a high standard for those who follow in his footsteps. Congratulations to Jeff Lewis for this well-deserved award, and may his journey continue to inspire and elevate the industry.

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