J. Robert Baum has succeeded John Shaffer as chairman of Highmark Inc., Pittsburgh, the parent company of Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield.[@@]

Shaffer has retired after serving as chairman since 1997.

Baum lives in Spring Grove, Pa., but is a business professor at the University of Maryland.

Baum, who has been Highmark’s vice chairman, has a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Lehigh University, a master’s degree in business from Northwestern University and a doctorate in management from the University of Maryland. He has founded and run several companies, including a clothing company, a software company and a woodworking company.