September 25, 2015

Five veteran regulators appointed to expanded leadership roles at Missouri Department of Insurance

Director Huff addresses annual Missouri Insurance Coalition meeting in Kansas City

Jefferson City, Mo. - Missouri Department of Insurance Director John M. Huff announced the appointments of five veteran regulators to new and expanded leadership roles. Director Huff announced the appointments today during his keynote comments at the Missouri Insurance Coalition Annual Meeting to nearly 100 insurance industry representatives at the Intercontinental Hotel in Kansas City.

Angela Nelson, Director of the Market Regulation Division, has been tasked with the additional responsibility of Chief Industry Liaison where she will develop and maintain strategic relationships with the insurance industry to further the department's mission and initiatives.

Nelson brings solid credentials to her new position, having worked her way up to leadership roles since joining the department in 2002. She was appointed director of the Division of Market Regulation in 2011. She previously was director of the Division of Consumer Affairs.

"During the largest insurance event in Missouri history, Angie brought unparalleled leadership and fortitude in assisting the Joplin tornado victims in 2011," said Director Huff. "Often working evenings and weekends, Angie and her team helped manage the $2.3 billion industry response to southwest Missouri policyholders at a time that was critical to the recovery of the region."

Carrie Couch has been named Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs. She began her career with the department 15 years ago in the legal section. In 2007, she became a special investigator for the division, was promoted to chief of investigations in 2010 and then appointed acting director last year.

"Carrie brings extensive experience and technical expertise from her years of public service with the department," said Huff. "She is committed to serving as a liaison between consumers and the insurance industry."

John Rehagen, CFE, ACI, has been appointed Director of Company and Captive Regulation. He will oversee insurance company solvency regulation as well as the thriving $5.1 billion Captive Insurance Program. Since Rehagen set up the program in 2007, 51 captives have been licensed, including a record 12 last year.

"The state received national recognition as a leading U.S. domicile when it was named to the shortlist for the 2015 U.S. Captive Service Awards," Director Huff said. "John played a key role in earning that recognition."

Rehagen previously served as acting director and deputy director of the Division of Company Regulation. He joined the department in 2003 as a financial examiner and financial analyst. 

Grady Martin has taken on additional responsibilities as Director of Administration and Technology, leading the department's technology efforts, in conjunction with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, to continue the modernization of insurance regulation in Missouri.  In 2011, he was promoted to Director of the Division of Administration, which provides services to all divisions, including budget, legislation, human resources and information technology. He joined the department in 2004 as budget director.

"Grady has been an innovative visionary, leveraging technology to create and enhance services for tens of thousands of licensees as well as the department's team. Our state's IT team awarded him an inaugural Techie Award in 2014 for those efforts," Huff said.

Leslie Nehring, CFE, CPA, has been appointed Chief Financial Examiner. She first joined the department in 2003 as a financial examiner, a position she held for five years before entering the private sector. She returned in 2009 as an examiner-in-charge and last year was promoted to acting chief financial examiner.

"Leslie will continue to protect consumers as well as companies through more stringent insurer financial reporting, analysis and enforcement. She will oversee the implementation of enhanced financial regulatory tools, including enterprise risk reporting and analysis along with the Own Risk Solvency Assessment (ORSA) Project, planned for 2016 implementation," Director Huff said. 

Director Huff's comments to the Missouri Insurance Coalition also included the topics of regulatory modernization implementation, price optimization, capital standards, NAIC state accreditation, regulatory guidance for insurer cybersecurity, and reinsurance. Director Huff currently serves as President-Elect of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and will serve as President in 2016. The last time a Missouri Director of Insurance led the NAIC was in 1955.