The Chicago River (Photo: Allison Bell/ALM)

The Illinois Department of Insurance may get a leader who has about five years of experience in the insurance industry.

Illinois Gov. Jay Pritzker, a Democrat, has nominated Dana Popish Severinghaus to be the department’s next director.

Popish Severinghaus is on track to succeed Robert Muriel, who left to take a job at a law firm.

(Related: Illinois Insurance Director to Leave Post: Personnel Moves )

Popish Severinghaus has been Midwest regional counsel at Allstate since 2018. She is a member of the board of the Illinois Insurance Guaranty Fund.

She has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa and a law degree from the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Previously she was a lobbyist at the Government Navigation Group from 2003 through 2012. From 2012 through 2016, she was director of government relations at BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois. Illinois Blue is an arm of Chicago-based Health Care Service Corp.

From 2016 through 2018, Popish Severinghaus was a senior policy advisor at the Illinois Department of Central Management Services.

Illinois is the sixth largest U.S. state in terms of population. If Popish Severinghaus is confirmed by the Illinois Senate, Illinois will be the highest-population state with an insurance department head who has included high-level insurance company experience in a LinkedIn entry or an official biography.

Another regulator in a high-population state — Dave Altmaier, Florida’s insurance commissioner — worked at an insurance agency before going to work for the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation.

— Read What Happens If Health Insurers Fail?on ThinkAdvisor.

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