Our History


National Baseball Hall of Fame Library ArchiveStemler, McTighe & Lewis, founded in 1932, is like no other benefits brokerage you have ever met. When the company was founded in 1932 the country was still struggling through the Great Depression.  Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig distracted fans with stellar play for the Yankees and the Blue Cross Logo was the standard or “Good Housekeeping” seal to prove a hospital was meeting appropriate standards of care. Despite the challenging times, many entrepreneurs were still pushing the envelope with new ideas, including the invention of the Polaroid camera. William Stemler, another entrepreneur, began a tradition of innovation while selling insurance products throughout the Central Valley.  In 1954, Mr. Stemler was instrumental in establishing the San Joaquin Foundation for Medical Care, which stood as the cornerstone for health care in the California Central Valley for many years.  Other California communities followed their lead and developed foundations patterned after the San Joaquin model.

Sacramento2Principals Craig Lewis and Mike Kesmodel have assembled an exemplary service team to help mid to large businesses and organizations successfully navigate a rapidly changing marketplace. Craig has spent nearly 26 years in the employee benefits industry and has been instrumental in the development of systems and services that have raised the bar for the brokerage industry.  Mike Kesmodel, who brings his own nearly 26 years of experience in the benefits industry has been successful in implementing cost-savings plans for large group employers throughout the country.  Today, after the resignation of Patrick McTighe from the Board of Directors, A new board is steering the ship that Wm. Stemler built, while redefining the standards of excellence in the industry from the common “Broker commission” model to “Concierge” fee for service model.  From SML, you can expect innovative ideas that save money while improving benefits, up-to-the-minute information on changes in healthcare law and a highly dedicated, responsive and experienced level of service.