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Michael Oler. (Photo: Pacific Life)

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Pacific Life Names an In-Plan Annuity Leader: Executive Changes

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What You Need to Know

  • Alliant has a new retirement solutions designer in Arkansas.
  • The Blues recruited a new top-level policy executive away from AHIP.
  • Two health insurers have top-level executives.

Pacific Life has hired Michael Oler to be head of defined contribution lifetime income for the company’s Institutional business.

The Newport Beach, California-based life insurer says the new unit is a “key growth initiative.” It will use new federal rules that encourage employers to add annuitization options to defined contribution retirement plans to market in-plan retirement income arrangements.

Oler previously was a retirement income product manager at T. Rowe Price. He has a bachelor’s degree from Rutgers, and he got his start in 401(k) plan administration and recordkeeping at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

In other life, annuity and retirement services executive changes news:

Alliant Retirement Consulting, an arm of Alliant Insurance Services, has hired Jason Feilke to be a vice president in Little Rock, Arkansas. Feilke, who previously worked for Meridian Investment Advisors, will design and implement retirement solutions for individuals and organizations.

Standard Insurance Company of Portland, Oregon, has promoted Shannon Martin to second vice president and assistant controller, from senior director of financial innovation and systems.

Health Changes

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association has hired David Merritt to be its senior vice president of policy and advocacy.

Merritt will oversee both state and federal lobbying for the Chicago-based group.

He has been head of public affairs and strategic initiatives at America’s Health Insurance Plans. He also has worked in political and messaging research for Frank Luntz; managed the Washington office for Leavitt Partners; and worked closely with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on health care issues.

Merritt has a bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University and a master’s degree in political science and government from Loyola University Chicago.

In part because of Merritt’s departure, AHIP has promoted Jeanette Thornton to executive vice president of public policy and strategy.

Thornton has been AHIP’s senior vice president of product, employer and commercial policy. Before that, she worked for the Office of Management and Budget and the Social Security Administration.

She has a bachelor’s degree from Western Illinois University and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Pittsburgh.

Kristin Grow, AHIP’s senior vice president of communications and public affairs, will be the interim head of AHIP’s public affairs and strategic initiatives team.

She has a bachelor’s degree from Temple University.

In other health insurance executive changes news:

MetroPlusHealth of New York has named Lila Benayoun its chief operating officer. She previously was the deputy COO of the nonprofit carrier, which provides health coverage for 675,000 people.

Lumeris, a St. Louis-based health plan support services company, has named Umar Farooq president of its Essence Healthcare Medicare Advantage plan affiliate. The plan provides coverage for 68,000 people. Farooq previously was the general manager for the Massachusetts market at Commonwealth Care Alliance of Boston

Tech Changes

Agency Revolution a San Diego-based provider of digital marketing services for the insurance industry, has hired Jason Walker to be president.

Walker has been the head of Agency Insurtech, a consulting firm.

He has a bachelor’s degree from Ohio State and a master’s degree in business from Ohio Dominican University.

Pictured: Michael Oler. (Photo: Pacific Life)