Ed LIgonde Ed Ligonde’s emphasis, he says, is not just on employee benefits but on the benefits of being an employee. (Photo: Jonah Light)
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When 2020’s COVID-19 lockdowns began, Edwige Ligonde’s brokerage was already working from home.

“We had kind of a dress rehearsal for the pandemic because we were remodeling our office and had sent everybody home,” he says. “We thought it was going to be a two-week or three-week thing, and then we’d be back to normal. As I learned more about the severity of the situation, my mindset shifted.”

Creating opportunities out of challenges is a lesson that Ligonde has learned from past experiences. As a young man, he suffered a set of stress fractures that derailed a promising soccer career. Although he was a rising star at UCLA at the time, Ligonde had to reset his sights on a business career. He quickly landed a plum internship at Northwestern Mutual; eventually that led to his career as a benefits advisor.

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