Gastonia, centered in the middle of Gaston County, began as a railroad junction settlement between the Charlotte and Atlanta Airline Railroad, now the Southern Railway, and the Chester and Lenoir Narrow Gauge line. The location of the railroads in Gaston County moved the focus of the land from essentially agriculture to what would become one of the greatest centers for textile production in the world. By 1876 a population of a little more than 200 people made this junction crossroads, called Gastonia Station, their home. The community petitioned the North Carolina General Assembly to grant a charter of incorporation, with the increase of employment and social opportunities. On January 26, 1877, Gastonia incorporated with its limits extending 1/2 mile from the railroad junction.
Gastonia is located in the Piedmont, a region of rolling hills, frequent streams and rivers, and red clay soils. The Piedmont area of North Carolina rises out of the Atlantic Coastal Plain and follows a general northeast to southwest axis, extending from south central Virginia to northeast Georgia. To the west of the Piedmont lie the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains. An oak and hickory forest once covered the region. The original virgin forest has been virtually eliminated through clearance for agriculture, pasture and urban development. Replacing the original forest in undeveloped areas is a second or later growth forest of mixed hardwoods and evergreens. Tree species cultivated today are those that provide benefit to urban areas through beauty, erosion control, privacy and shade. Such trees include oak, maple, dogwood, evergreens, and flowering trees.
Jerry Ballard & Associates, Inc. is an award-winning, top-producing, online-based North Carolina Insurance Agency that has attained the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina President's Club Status for excellence since its inception. At NC Health Plans, we offer a variety of insurance products, focusing primarily on the North Carolina health insurance and Medicare markets. Our goal is to provide the highest level of service to our customers while offering the convenience of handling your health insurance needs from the comfort of your own home. A leader in the industry, Jerry Ballard has been the #1 top producing independent insurance agent for Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina in individual sales for 11 consecutive years. In August 2014, Jerry was inducted in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Hall of Fame and he has successfully built a team of qualified, professional Agents dedicated to providing exemplary service to both new and existing customers. Not only does our Agency offer outstanding service, we also provide the technological sophistication you need to obtain quick and accurate information via our website, www.nchealthplans.com. In this ever-changing health insurance market, it is more important than ever to have a knowledgeable and professional advocate to help you navigate your insurance needs. At Jerry Ballard & Associates, Inc. we make it our priority to offer you both quality products and personal service.
In December 2018 our Agency was further recognized and received The Elite Plus Circle of Champions status for 2019 which highlights the highest performing agents and brokers into this small and esteemed group. The Elite Plus designation is the pinnacle of the Marketplace Circle of Champions program. We were among the top performing agents or brokers in the Marketplace, helping 500 and more consumers make plan selections and enroll for plan year 2019.
In December 2017 our Agency was recognized and received a Certificate of Recognition from HealthCare.Gov in appreciation of our ongoing contribution and success during the 2018 Health Insurance Marketplace Open Enrollment period. This recognition placed us in the Circle of Champions and is based on our hard work and high enrollment production. This has increased access to health care for many and made a lasting positive impact for all of our customers throughout the State of North Carolina.
NC Health Plans offers Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina health insurance plans both on and off the Health Insurance Exchange/Marketplace, Medicare Supplement plans, Group Health Insurance and Dental plans for all ages.
We also offer additional products through other carriers including, Temporary Health Insurance, Term Life Insurance, Vision Insurance, Short Term Disability, Home Health Care plans which is a great alternative to Long Term Care and Out of Pocket Protection plans that can help reduce or eliminate your health insurance deductible.