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Our Agency

Serving Central NY From 1919 to Today

The Burns Agency was founded in 1919 by O. Gregory Burns, a prominent Clinton attorney, it began as an ancillary business providing car and fire insurance to Mr. Burns' legal clients. The agency grew as O. Gregory's son Nicholas K. Burns, Sr. joined in the early 1950's. Nick Sr. capitalized on the good Burns name in Clinton (established by his father; and grandfather, O.J. Burns, who operated a successful grocery in town) by successfully becoming "The" real estate agent in Clinton. Nick Sr. provided car and homeowners insurance to his real estate clients and was a one man welcome wagon to people who settled in the community he loved. During his 30 years in the insurance business, Nick Sr. gained a reputation for excellence and professionalism.

Nicholas K. Burns, Jr. and David J. Burns both joined the business in 1977 as customer service representatives in personal lines. As time went on Nick Jr., who has since left the agency to pursue a career in publishing, copywriting and marketing, and Dave began to build the commercial lines division. The brothers purchased the business in 1984 from their father's estate and worked to make sure that the primary focus of the business would be providing insurance services. The "small town" character of the agency with a focus on insurance sales and service is still the rule. Marketing strategies have expanded the agency's territory but do not compromise its honest, caring, customer first, small town roots.

Today, Dave Burns heads an agency which is continuously striving to improve itself. With the vision and determination of its staff, The Burns Agency will work diligently to achieve its goals. Staff members are: Wendy P. Lawlor, Manager / Commercial Lines Customer Service Agent; Julie A. Freemire, Personal Lines Customer Service Agent; Lisa Farmer, Bookkeeper; and Elaine Wallace, Receptionist. The Burns Agency’s staff members will continue the agency's long tradition of personal customer service as we move into the future.


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Going to Canada?

Ask us for a Canadian ID card. "A U.S. traveler in Canada is required to carry a motor vehicle liability card, plus vehicle ownership papers. A copy of the automobile policy is recommended to be carried. And a Canadian Non-Resident Inter-provincial Motor Vehicle Liability Card is strongly recommended. U.S. travelers who do not carry a Canadian Non-Resident Inter-provincial Motor Vehicle Liability Card and are stopped by Canadian police or are in an accident while driving in Canada risk being fined or having their vehicle impounded until proof of proper coverage is obtained."