Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Thomas B. Leonardi will step down from his post on Dec. 11, 2014, to join a New York-based global investment banking advisory firm, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office announced Wednesday.
Leonardi, who led the Connecticut Insurance Department for nearly four years, is taking a job as senior advisor focusing on insurance at Evercore.
Gov. Malloy will announce subsequent personnel decisions regarding the department in the coming weeks, according to the announcement.
Gov. Malloy said in a statement that Leonardi’s work helped Connecticut reclaim its reputation as the insurance capital of the world.
“Thanks to the diligence of Thomas Leonardi’s work in my administration, Connecticut has reclaimed its reputation as the insurance capital of the world, and our international influence has never been higher,” Malloy said.
“I have no doubt that Tom’s global reputation as a recognized expert on a variety of regulatory issues, along with the outstanding relationships he has built with consumer and industry trade associations, played a crucial role,” said Malloy. “I thank Commissioner Leonardi for all he has done as a member of this administration and wish him all the best in his next endeavor.”
Leonardi was appointed by Malloy in February 2011 to head Connecticut’s insurance department, a regulatory agency with jurisdiction over one of the largest insurance industries in the U.S.
For 22 years prior to the appointment, he was CEO of Northington Partners Inc., an Avon, Connecticut-based investment banking, venture capital, and private equity boutique that specialized in the insurance industry.
“I want to thank Governor Malloy for entrusting me with the responsibility to head the Connecticut Insurance Department over these past four years,” Leonardi said in a statement. “We could not have achieved so much on such a global scale without the governor’s extraordinary vision and unprecedented support for me and my department.”
“I am extremely grateful to my dedicated and talented staff and for the opportunity to serve as commissioner. I am confident that I am leaving the department in fantastic shape for the future of Connecticut and the future of the insurance industry,” said Leonardi.
During his tenure, Leonardi has been a member of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) Life, Property Casualty, Financial Condition, Accreditation (vice chair for two years), and International Relations (chair) Committees. He served as chair of the Financial Stability Task Force and chair of the Northeast Zone.
He has been an outspoken supporter of the need for the institution of best practices in good governance at the NAIC, including the proposal to hire an outside consultant to conduct a thorough review of the NAIC’s bylaws, committee selections, and the role and responsibilities of both the officers and the CEO.
For three years Leonardi was a member of the U.S. Treasury’s inaugural Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance.
In addition, Leonardi is the sole U.S. regulator to have concurrently sat on all three International Association of Insurance Supervisors’ (IAIS) Committees: Executive, Technical and Financial Stability. He has been active on more than 15 supervisory colleges for large internationally active insurance and reinsurance groups in the U.S. and Europe. Leonardi has been one of the most vocal opponents of attempts by EU policymakers to require the U.S. to submit to an “Equivalency” evaluation to Europe’s Solvency 2.
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