Ted Mathas has been named chief executive officer-elect by the board of directors of New York Life Insurance Company, New York. He will succeed Sy Sternberg, 64, who has been CEO for more than a decade, upon Mr. Sternberg’s retirement on June 30, 2008. Beginning July 1, Mr. Sternberg remains chairman of the board of directors in a non-executive capacity, for a transition period.
Mr. Mathas, 40, has served as New York Life’s president since June 2007 and chief operating officer since May 2006. He will retain the president’s title upon assuming the chief executive’s role in July.
Mr. Sternberg said, “As we looked ahead toward my scheduled retirement at age 65, the board had time to plan – and I had time to assist in – an orderly and seamless transition so that the company doesn’t miss a beat. Ted is a superb choice for CEO. Since joining us in 1995, Ted has contributed to virtually every facet of New York Life, including our life and annuity products, distribution systems and services, and our international operations. We are fortunate to have a leader of Ted’s energy, intellect, and vision taking the reins as chief executive in July.”
Mr. Mathas said, “I’m honored to have the confidence of the board and look forward to becoming the next chief executive of New York Life in July. Sy and I will continue working closely together to assure a smooth transition. New York Life is a remarkable company, with a well-deserved reputation for delivering on our promises to policyholders and maintaining the most successful career agency system in the United States. A tradition of strong executive stewardship has played a key role in the company’s track record of success for 163 years, and I’m proud to be a part of that tradition. I’m looking forward to my new role and to working with our agents, employees and partners to continue serving the needs of our millions of policyholders.”
Mr. Mathas will be the 18th chief executive in the company’s 163-year history. He is currently president and chief operating officer, responsible for overseeing all domestic and international business operations including life insurance, retirement income, investments, long-term care insurance and related businesses, as well as the company’s career agency system. Serving with Mr. Mathas in the office of the Chief Operating Officer is Gary Wendlandt, 57, the company’s chief investment officer who also serves as a director of the company with the title of Vice Chairman of the Board. Mr. Wendlandt reports to Mr. Mathas.
Since 2002, Mr. Mathas has been a member of the company’s executive management committee, which is comprised of New York Life’s senior executive leadership and assists the CEO in setting policy for the company. He also serves on the board of Haier New York Life Insurance Ltd., the company’s joint venture in China, and on the board of the American Council of Life Insurers.
Mr. Mathas joined New York Life in June 1995 as an officer in the asset management department. He became president of Eagle Strategies Corp., a registered investment subsidiary, in September 1996. In May 1997, Mr. Mathas assumed the additional position of President of NYLIFE Securities Inc., a retail broker-dealer subsidiary. He was promoted to senior vice president in September 1998, and in June 1999, he became Chief Operating Officer in the agency department at New York Life. He became Chief Operating Officer for life and annuity in April 2001 and was elected executive vice president in January 2004, when he was named co-head of U.S. Insurance Operations. Effective July 1, 2006, Mr. Mathas became Chief Operating Officer and was elected a member of the company’s board of directors with the title of vice chairman of the board. He was elected president of New York Life effective July 1, 2007.
Mr. Mathas graduated with an A.B. from Stanford University, with distinction, in 1989. He received a J.D. from the University of Virginia in 1992, where he was a member of the Virginia Law Review and the Order of the Coif. He and his wife, Keryn, live in Armonk, New York, with their three children.