As a wide-eyed freshman in college, still clinging to his teens, Tom Schifano’s father packed up his New Jersey family and moved them to the dusty plains of rural Indiana. His father, a lifelong MetLife guy, jumped at the chance to take a district manager job in the Midwest.

“Here I was 19 years old and the four of us moved from Lyndhurst, N.J., which was one square mile with 25,000 people, to Terre Haute, Ind.,” Schifano recalls.

A year later, he found himself as a college trainee at MetLife, already following the old man’s footsteps. Although his steps took him off the beaten path.

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