Security Benefit has hired Kevin Hart to be head of the retail retirement division’s national distribution group.

Hart has been president of the Sun Life Financial Distributors Inc. unit of Sun Life Financial Inc., Toronto (NYSE:SLF), and he also has been president of the broker-dealer network at American International Group Inc., New York (NYSE:AIG).

Hart has a bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University.

Security Benefit, Topeka, Kan., recently was acquired by Guggenheim Partners L.L.C., Chicago.

In other personnel news:

- Principal Financial Group Inc., Des Moines, Iowa (NYSE:PFG), has promoted Norman Sorensen, Luis Valdes, and Roberto Walker.

Valdes has taken over from Sorenson as president of Principal International Inc.

Sorensen has become the unit’s chairman.

Walker, formerly chief operating officer of Principal International Latin America, has become that unit’s president.

Sorensen has a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy. He is the chairman of the International Insurance Society, New York.

Valedes has spent years at Principal. Before that, he was an innsurance market consultant for the World Bank. He also served as Chile’s insurance commissioner.

Valdes has a bachelor’s degree in industrial and civil engineering from the Universidad de Chile and a master’s degree from the Universidad de Navarra.

Walker has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the Universidad de Chile.

- Wells Fargo & Fargo, San Francisco (NYSE:WFC), has hired Linda Need to be managing director of the life insurance division.

Need previously was senior vice president of wealth and investment management at Bank of America Corp., Charlotte, N.C. (NYSE:BAC).

Need has a bachelor’s degree from Williams College.

- Hartford Financial Services Inc., Hartford (NYSE:HIG), says it has tripled the number of in-house annuity sales professionals supporting its field wholesaling team.

The sales professionals are in Hartford’s Wayne, Pa., office, the company says.

- The Ohio Department of Insurance has hired Cathy Geyer to be deputy director.

Geyer previously worked for Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, Columbus, Ohio, in the office of the chief legal and governance officer.

Geyer has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Denison University and a law degree from Ohio State University.

The Ohio department also has hired Jillian Froment to be chief administrative officer and John Charlton to be communications director.

Froment previously served as the city administrator for Marysville, Ohio

Froment has a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Ohio State University and a doctorate degree from Capital University.

Charlton has a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University.

More Personnel Changes columns from National Underwriter Life & Health: