Specializing in Insurance, Bonds & Benefits


Patrick McKain takes pride in what South Risk Management has grown to become

Friday, January 8th, 2021

Patrick McKain’s father was in the insurance business. So was his grandfather. But he wasn’t sure that’s what wanted to do when he was in school. He thought for awhile about becoming an architect.

But after he graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in marketing and management – his double major – he went one day for an interview with Boyle Vaughn Associates at 1901 Main Street in Columbia. The company was then the largest independent insurance agency in South Carolina by far.

And immediately he was impressed, from the moment he got off the elevator on the 12th floor. Passing a conference room, he looked out the windows overlooking Columbia. It was a sunny day, and the city looked amazing, laid out below. It was very inviting.

After that, it was the job itself that pulled him in. “I loved what I was doing,” he remembers, and he recognized that it was the people he worked with who made it special. It was generally a young group, with “lots of energy.”

Changes came, but it was still a good place to work. The company was sold to BB&T in 1996, but the same team stayed together in the same place. Patrick’s future partner David Wells joined the agency at the start of 1997, and they went on to have a lot of good years together learning every aspect of the insurance business.

But after about 15 years of that, they both had the itch to set out and start their own operation. Eventually, they joined up with friends Tripp Hafner and W.D. Morris, and all of them became founding partners in today’s South Risk Management – a full-range brokerage helping clients with commercial insurance, employee benefits, surety bonds and personal insurance.

How has that worked out?

“We should have done it long before we did,” he says without hesitation. “We’ve had great success. We still have a long way to go, but it’s been going great.”

The best part? “Definitely the people.” The folks at South Risk are “proud to say they work here,” and he’s proud to know that.

And he’s more than eager to talk to anyone who needs the services South Risk provides. “We’re here to help. We’re different.” And that difference lies in the personal touch for which SRM is well known.

In his spare time, Patrick enjoys golf, hunting and fishing. He and his family enjoy traveling. Patrick and his wife, Gray, have been married for 22 years, and have “two wonderful daughters,” Maggie and Chase.