Company History

The history of Huntley-Bravos-Zall Insurance Brokers can be traced back to 1912, when Charles R. Boyd formed the Sutter Holding Company for the First National Bank of Yuba City.

Boyd was a Sutter County pioneer businessman and farmer who also belonged to the Farmers’ Cooperation Union of Sutter County. The cooperative was established to process and merchandise crops, mainly hay and grain, grown by its members. At that time produce was shipped by boat down the Feather River from Yuba City to buyers in San Francisco. Boyd worked for the cooperative, first as a weigher, and eventually as manager.

To provide financial services for its members, the cooperative established the First National Bank of Yuba City in 1912, and named Charles R. Boyd as bank president. At that time he formed the Sutter Holding Company to handle insurance for the bank and its customers.

In 1926, when the Bank of Italy took control of First National, Sutter Holding became a separate independent insurance agency. C.R. Boyd appointed his son, Donald, as manager of the now-independent Sutter Holding Company. Donald Boyd was an experienced insurance agent who had worked for a number of years in San Francisco with the M. Thompson Company. Boyd was joined by his son-in-law, John J. Sheehy in 1945.

In 1972 Sutter Holding Company merged with the prestigious Ellis-Huntley Company to form Huntley-Sheehy Insurance Company, Inc., with principals Mallard R. Huntley, Bradford Huntley and John Sheehy.

The Ellis-Huntley firm had been established in 1924 by W.T. Ellis, Jr., who was instrumental in stopping the devastating hydraulic mining in the foothills that filled the rivers with debris. He was also responsible for building a remarkable levee system that has, since it was completed, protected the city of Marysville from flood waters.

Raymond Huntley purchased the firm from Ellis in 1946, but kept the Ellis name out of respect for the man until his death in 1955. At the time he purchased the agency Ray Huntley had been the manager of the San Francisco branch of the Travelers Insurance Company.

In 1952 Ray Huntley sold one-half of the agency to his cousin Mal J. Huntley, who was at that time chief underwriting officer of a subsidiary of the Home Insurance company in the Midwest.

In 1963 Mal’s sons, Brad K. and Mal R., joined the firm. After the deaths of the senior partners, Mal R. Huntley, Brad Huntley, and John Sheehy formed the new agency. Sheehy retired in 1984, but remained semi-active until 1986.

The agency expanded with the addition of Bill Bravos in 1988. Seeking young talent, Huntley-Sheehy recruited two young producers. Alex Bravos joined the team in 2005 and Zach Zall in 2009.

In 2015 the agency was renamed Huntley-Bravos-Zall Insurance Brokers to reflect the current principals active in the business.

Huntley-Bravos-Zall Insurance Brokers have been a leader in general insurance services for the California marketplace since 1912. The owners continue the tradition started more than 100 years ago of not only providing business services, but also being active in community and civic affairs.
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