NAIC Names New CEO

January 22, 2013

Former Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson has been named chief executive officer (CEO) of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

Nelson will lead the NAIC’s efforts to meet the needs of its members and represent their interests as the primary advocate and chief spokesperson in Washington, D.C. His responsibilities will include outreach to federal and international governmental entities, as well as state government associations, consumers and insurance industry representatives.

“I am honored to serve as CEO during such an important and exciting time in the regulatory community,” Nelson said. “After years in government, this is a homecoming for me. It is also an opportunity to advance the work of the NAIC to safeguard the insurance sector through the promotion of our outstanding regulatory framework. In my new role, I look forward to continuing our relationship with the Federal Insurance Office as well as working with state regulators on matters affecting the economy and consumers.”

Prior to retiring from the Senate in 2012 after two terms, Nelson served as governor of Nebraska from 1990-1998. He also served as executive vice president and chief of staff for the NAIC (1982-1985); director of the Nebraska Department of Insurance (1975-1975); and executive vice president and then president/CEO of the Central National Insurance Group (1977-1981). Nelson earned a juris doctorate, as well as undergraduate and graduate degrees in philosophy, from the University of Nebraska.

Nelson replaces NAIC Acting CEO Andrew Beal, who stepped into the role after former CEO Dr. Therese M. Vaughan left the association in November. Beal now returns to his roles as chief operating officer and chief legal counsel.

“Senator Nelson’s impressive credentials and deep knowledge of state insurance regulation are simply unmatched,” said Jim Donelon, NAIC president and Louisiana insurance commissioner. “His rare and valuable combination of experience in insurance and government will be a tremendous asset to our organization. In addition to skillfully navigating the political arena, the stalwart leadership and collaborative nature that marked his time in public service will be integral to elevating our efforts on Capitol Hill. Moreover, as a former regulator and executive vice president of the NAIC, Senator Nelson has a keen understanding of the insurance marketplace, which will make him an effective advocate for the preservation of our state-based system of regulation.”

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