National Assoc. of Insurance Commissioners Elects Officers

December 8, 2005

Members of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners elected regulators from Maine, Alabama, Kansas and New Mexico as the organization’s 2006 officers during the Association’s Winter National Meeting.

NAIC members elected Maine Insurance Superintendent Alessandro Iuppa, current NAIC President-Elect, as President.

“The cooperation and collaboration demonstrated by state insurance departments during the weather-related disasters this year proves the state of state-based insurance regulation has never been stronger,” said President Iuppa. “As president of the NAIC, I pledge to work toward continuing progress in uniformity and modernization efforts whenever and wherever possible. I believe we must aggressively work toward making the Interstate Compact operation by January 2007. In addition, I will work to solidify our position in financial services sector discussions on the international front.”

Alessandro Iuppa was initially appointed Maine’s Superintendent of Insurance January 1998 and was re-appointed to a second term by Governor Baldacci in March 2004.

He is an active participant on insurance issues at both the national and international levels. He currently serves as a member of the NAIC Executive Committee and is Chair of the NAIC Reinsurance Task Force. He has also been designated by the NAIC to represent the United States at the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS) where he serves as Chair of the Executive Committee. During the past several years he has made numerous presentations on a number of insurance matters in China, India, South Africa, Japan, and Europe on behalf of the NAIC, IAIS, and OECD.

Prior to joining the Maine Bureau of Insurance, Superintendent Iuppa provided consulting services to various state insurance departments for the rehabilitation of financially impaired insurance companies. From 1986 to 1991, Alessandro was with the State of Nevada, serving as Deputy Commissioner and Commissioner of Insurance. Superintendent Iuppa holds a master’s degree in public administration from Suffolk University School of Management in Boston and a Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Michael’s College in Winooski, Vermont. He is a resident of Yarmouth, Maine.

Walter Bell, Alabama Commissioner of Insurance, was selected as NAIC President-Elect. He became commissioner of insurance for the state of Alabama in January 2003. Commissioner Bell began his insurance career as a financial professional with The MONY Group in 1983. He served as their national director of emerging markets from 1996 until 1999, at which time he became vice president of corporate diversity in New York City, leading diversity marketing and recruiting initiatives until his retirement in 2002.

Commissioner Bell’s career also includes banking, where he served as branch manager of AmSouth Bank in Mobile, Alabama, from 1979 until 1983. In 1974 he was community relations director with the Indianapolis Urban League in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Other business experience includes serving on the board of directors of EnergySouth, Inc., and having a partnership interest in the Mobile BayBears Double AA Baseball Team. Commissioner Bell received a bachelor’s degree from Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama.

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger was elected to the post of NAIC Vice President. She was elected Kansas’ 24th Commissioner of Insurance in 2002 and began serving in the position on January 13, 2003.

She previously served 3 terms in the Kansas Senate and one term in the Kansas House of Representatives. She also served as mayor of Lawrence, Kansas and was on the Lawrence City Commission.

Positions she holds with the NAIC include: Secretary-Treasurer, member of the EX-1 Subcommittee for Internal Administration, chair of the Audit Committee, Vice Chair of the Health Insurance and Managed Care Committee and member of the Life Insurance and Annuities Committee. She previously served as vice chair for the NAIC Midwestern Zone.

Commissioner Praeger has testified before the U.S. Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee on the topic of “balanced federalism” as it relates to health regulatory issues and also appeared before the U.S. Senate Small Business Committee expressing concerns about association health plans. She was a recipient of the prestigious Dr. Nathan B. Davis Award, bestowed annually by the American Medical Association to individuals who have made a significant contribution to the public health through elected and career government service. She is a graduate of the University of Kansas.

Eric Serna, New Mexico Insurance Superintendent was elected as NAIC Secretary-Treasurer.

He was appointed to the position of Superintendent of Insurance in 2001. Superintendent Serna has served as cabinet secretary to the New Mexico Department of Labor. In 1981, he won election to the New Mexico State Corporation Commission where he served for 17 years, 14 years as its chairman. In 1998, President Clinton appointed Mr. Serna to be the Regional Director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the States of Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado. He was the 2002 recipient of the Liberty and Justice Award from the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association, and the 2004 recipient of the Governor’s Distinguished Service Award from Governor Bill Richardson.

Superintendent Serna is a graduate of the University of New Mexico. He earned his law degree from Catholic University, Columbus School of Law in Washington, D.C. Superintendent Serna is a Harvard University Kennedy School of Government fellow in advanced studies of government and politics and has completed education programs at NYU’s Division of Business and Management Certification and the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada. He is a member of the New Mexico State Bar, the American Bar Association, the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association and the National Hispanic Bar Association.

Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Diane Koken will serve as the Association’s immediate Past President.

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