ATLANTA, June 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Crawford Contractor Connection's annual conference was another record-setter, with more than 2,100 contractors, insurance carrier representatives and service provider partners attending sessions and networking during the 13th annual event, held recently at the San Diego Convention Center.

The Contractor Connection Conference, one of the largest restoration expos in the insurance industry, is an invitation-only event for participants in Crawford & Company's extensive contractor network, offering insurance carriers, affinity partners, network members and Crawford personnel an opportunity to focus on contractor program service offerings. This year's theme was "Delivering on Promises."

"Our clients embrace this event, as it allows them an effective manner in which to communicate directly to the valued participating contractors that service their policyholders," said Larry Thomas, senior vice president of Contractor Connection. "In addition, our network members look to us to provide them educational and networking opportunities that allow them to improve their service to the insurance industry. It brings us great satisfaction to host this conference and see the tremendous value it brings to the industry year after year."

Rick Barrera, author of the best-selling book "Overpromise and Overdeliver," served as the keynote speaker and enlightened the audience on the keys to brand-building and exceeding expectations. In addition, Kevin Frawley, chief executive officer of Crawford's Property & Casualty - Americas region, offered remarks, and Chip Lackey, senior director of JD Powers & Associates, provided insight on customer service.

Special client sessions were held as part of the general session, in which a number of leading national insurance carriers that partner with Contractor Connection discussed their expectations for contractor managed repair services. Breakout sessions, workshops and training sessions covered such general business topics as management and leadership skills, business succession, finance and industry-specific subjects such as water damage restoration, software applications and roof certification training. In addition to the general session attendance, a welcome reception hosted more than 1,800 participants, including 128 exhibitors, the largest-ever showing by vendors during the event.

Crawford recognized its top-performing network contractors with its "Golden Hammer - Excellence in Achievement Award" during the conference. Awards are based on overall performance and customer satisfaction results for the year.

Crawford Contractor Connection provides insurers with an efficient, high-quality managed repair vendor network for residential and commercial property claims programs. Contractor Connection has more than 3,500 members operating in the United States and Canada, where the network became available to the insurance market in 2010.

Next year's event will be held June 19-22 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center, Nashville, Tenn.