Office Profile

Steven began his career with Northwestern Mutual in 1989 as a financial representative in Houston, Texas. In 1993, he transferred to Baton Rouge, and became managing director of the Baton Rouge territory in 2001. Under Steven’s leadership, the Baton Rouge office consistency grew, and it was regularly recognized as one of the best district offices in the country. In June of 2007, he  was appointed managing partner for the entire state of Louisiana, which includes Lake Charles, Lafayette, Shreveport, Baton Rouge and New Orleans offices. In November of 2016, he took over the Mississippi territory as well. In this role as managing partner, Steven provides executive leadership for the entire network office territory in order to grow distribution force and deliver Northwestern Mutual products and services throughout the state. Steven creates the vision for long-term growth, sets priorities, and supports brand awareness to position financial representatives and the organization for success.

Under his leadership as managing partner, Louisiana network has consistently been recognized as one of the leading network offices within Northwestern Mutual. In 2016, the network was recognized in the top 10 in its category for premium.

Steven is married to Lisa, and they have two children and one grandson. Katy works at the Ridgeland, MS office,  and Nicholas is a student at Louisiana State University. Steven enjoys spending time with his  family, reading, tennis, and helping others unleash the power from within.

  • Member of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors
  • Member of GNO Inc. Policy Making Committee
  • Board member of the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce
  • Board member of Legatus North Shore
  • Board member of Greater New Orleans Habitat for Humanity
  • Board member of Louisiana’s Insurance Commissioners Advisory panel for Life and Health Insurance
  • Past president of the Greater Baton Rouge chapter of Sales and Marketing Executives International

  • National Quality Award recognizing persistency and performance (1991-1996, 2000-2001, 2004-2005, 2007).

  • Million Dollar Round Table Qualifying Member (2000, 2006-2014). MDRT is the premier association of financial professionals. MDRT status designation is granted for one year and members must apply every year to continue their affiliation with the MDRT.

  • NAIFA's Manager's Membership Award for 2008-2016 which recognizes organizations that support a strong financial services industry by supporting NAIFA and its efforts. Life, health, multi-line agencies and financial groups are encouraged to receive this award by ensuring that a certain percentage of their agents, based on the organization's size, are NAIFA members.

  • Managing Partner Achieve Award: The award recognizes overall excellence in network development, including productivity, recruitment and retention of financial representatives, and persistency in serving and retaining clients.

  • Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU®) designation. The CLU® designation has long been recognized as the fundamental and foremost educational credential for life insurance professionals. CLU(R) supports professionals in providing clients with knowledgeable and ethical advice. For financial representatives, field management, home office personnel, and others involved in providing life insurance products to the public, the CLU(R)designation symbolizes continuing growth and commitment to professionalism.

  • Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC®) designation. The ChFC® designation focuses on the comprehensive financial planning process as an organized way to collect and analyze information on a client's total financial situation; to identify and establish specific financial goals; and to formulate, implement, and monitor a comprehensive plan to achieve those goals. The ChFC® program provides financial services professionals with in-depth knowledge of the skills needed to perform comprehensive financial planning for their clients.

  • The Chartered Leadership Fellow (CLF®) designation. The Chartered Leadership Fellow (CLF®) program, developed by The American College, provides financial services managers with the knowledge and tools they need to achieve key organizational goals, such as: recruiting and retaining top performers, setting performance, developing effective business plans, and improving managerial and leadership skills.

  • The Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF) designation.

With offices in Metairie, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles, and Shreveport, we provide expert guidance and innovative solutions that are designed for you, and for those who depend on you.Financial Representatives with Northwestern Mutual offer access to world-class insurance services and internationally recognized investment products, including investments, estate analysis, retirement analysis, education funding, employee benefits and insurances.

Baton Rouge

Ben Wheeler, CLU®, LUTCF
Managing Director

11440 Lake Sherwood N
Baton Rouge, LA 70816-0408
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Stuart Cestia, LUTCF, CLU®
Managing Director

2008 S College Rd
Lafayette, LA 70508-3278
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Lake Charles

Ted P Harless Jr, CLTC, LUTCF
Managing Director

127 W Broad St Ste 600
Lake Charles, LA 70601-4291
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This Network Office has been active since 1968.

Steven Dugal, CLU®, ChFC®, CLF®, LUTCF

Managing Partner


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To learn more about Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC and its financial representatives, visit: FINRA BrokerCheck