Our commitment to caring began on May 24, 1883 at Holy Family Parish in Chicago, Illinois. At that time, impoverished immigrants streamed into the United States seeking a better life. When families lost their breadwinner, friends and neighbors typically collected money to assist survivors financially.
Those collecting money eventually formed associations, generally based on religious or ethnic backgrounds. Often these societies became focal points for community life. Forty-two men saw a need in their community, so they joined together to financially protect their families. They each placed $1 on a wooden desk, which now resides in the Memorabilia Room at the Home Office. COF grew from this foundation and, for more than a century, has aided individuals, families and communities in need.
The name "Catholic Order of Foresters" refers to us being called to care for our Catholic community. As a forester cares for the forests and animals, we must care for our brothers and sisters in need.
Each member holds an insurance certificate and eligibility for COF’s unique added-value fraternal benefits, which enhance membership and set us apart from other life insurance companies. By offering members fraternal benefits, including scholarships and tuition assistance, we bring Catholic values to life.
Our Home Office is located in Naperville, Illinois.
We have approximately 111,0001 adult and youth members, and more than 300 local courts. (A member is a person who is insured by a COF life insurance certificate, or the named annuitant of a COF annuity certificate.) As a not-for-profit fraternal benefit insurance society, we operate under a representative system. COF is licensed in 32 states and Washington, D.C. Our product portfolio includes Term Life, Whole Life, Universal Life, and Annuities.1As of December 31, 2018.