About Us

Board Member

Gib Surles


Gib Surles

Gib Surles

Vice President

Gib is principal and founder of The Forrest Group, L.L.C., an estate management
firm in Houston, Texas, that specializes in wealth transfer and business succession
planning. Utilizing life insurance, his firm works with family-owned businesses
and high net worth individuals in addressing problems common to the transfer of
assets, lifestyles and financial security to future generations.
Gib graduated from Texas A & M University in 1985 with a B.B.A in Marketing
and received his Masters of Science in Financial Services (MSFS) from The
American College in 2001. He was awarded the Chartered Life Underwriter
(CLU®) in 1996, Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC®) in 1997, Certified
Financial Planner (CFP®) in 1997, and Accredited Estate Planner (AEP®) in
1999.

Gib joined the New York Life Insurance Company in June 1985 and while
maintaining his primary relationship with them, he formed The Forrest Group,
LLC in 1995. He is a Nautilus Plus member of The Nautilus Group®, a subsidiary
of New York Life, and is a life and qualifying member of The Million Dollar
Round Table (MDRT), having earned both Court of the Table and Top of the
Table. Gib was recently elected a Board Member for both the Houston Business
and Estate Planning Council and the Houston Chapter of NAIFA. He is a Past
President of The Houston Chapter of the Society of Financial Service
Professionals (SFSP) and has also served as President of the Houston Estate and
Financial Forum (HEFF). Gib is an active member of the Association for
Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) where he served as President for the 2011-
2012 year. He previously served on the Board of Directors for Life Happens
(formerly The Life Foundation) and served as the 2017 President of New York
Life Insurance Company’s Agent’s Advisory Council (AAC). He is the 2011
recipient of the Benjamin “Woody” Woodson Award, for outstanding service in
the community and the industry and is the 2013 recipient of the NAIFA Houston
John N. Neighbors Award.

Gib has been married to his wife, Lauri, for thirty one years. He has a twenty five
year old son, Forrest, who is a 2016 Graduate of the Mays Business School at
Texas A&M University. He is also father to twenty two year old twin daughters,
Autumn and Amy, who both graduated from Texas A&M University in 2019. He
is an active member of St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston, TX, where he
serves on the Endowment Board, and he is also a loyal supporter of the Hunters
for the Hungry.

Houston Safari Club Foundation (HSCF) is a non-profit organization, exempt from federal income tax, under section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code. The charitable deduction for contributions to HSCF is the cash amount of the contribution, less the value of goods and services received, to the extent permitted by law. HSCF EIN 74-2177975. Please contact your tax advisor concerning deductibility of any payments as business deductions. HSCF is an independent organization, is not affiliated with Safari Club International (SCI) or its affiliates and is not a chapter or affiliate of any other organization.