Leadership Team

Paula Steiner

President and Chief Executive Officer

As president and CEO of Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), Paula Steiner is committed to expanding access to quality, cost-effective health care to all Americans. Firmly focused on the health care needs of more than 16 million HCSC members, Steiner leads the nation’s largest customer-owned health insurer, which operates as Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

HCSC also operates Dearborn National, Medecision, Academic HealthPlans and Innovista Health Solutions. HCSC has more than 23,000 employees.

Under Steiner’s leadership, HCSC continues on the path to help achieve a sustainable health care system that provides access to affordable care for generations to come for all Americans. As part of her commitment to addressing the needs of today’s health care consumer, Steiner’s priorities include: advancing HCSC’s leadership role in value-based care solutions, including accountable care organization arrangements with providers; promoting the use of technology and data to an even greater extent to help physicians help their patients; and looking for better ways to manage chronic disease to keep people healthy and away from emergency rooms.

Steiner has worked for more than 30 years in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield system. After serving as senior vice president of Brand Enhancement and Extension at the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, she took on several leadership roles with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois and then HCSC before becoming its chief strategy officer. She developed the company’s current long-term strategy focused on serving three main markets: employer groups, government programs (Medicare and Medicaid), and individuals. Steiner became HCSC president in July 2015 and added the CEO role in January 2016.

Steiner serves on the boards of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, America’s Health Insurance Plans and the National Institute for Health Care Management. She is also a member of the board of directors of World Business Chicago. She holds a B.A. in economics from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from the Wharton School.

Monica Berner, M.D.

President, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Montana (BCBSMT)
Dr. Monica Berner is responsible for all Montana Plan operations, including sales and account management, government and public relations, provider network management, and medical management. Previously, Dr. Berner served as chief medical officer and medical director.

Dr. Berner joined BCBSMT in 2009 after working in direct patient care for 12 years. She received her medical degree in 1994 from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. Dr. Berner had a private medical practice in Aloha, Oregon, before joining the Lewis and Clark County Community Health Center in Helena. She then became a Veteran Affairs staff physician in the outpatient clinic at Fort Harrison, Montana’s Veteran’s Hospital. Dr. Berner was named the Montana Medical Association’s 2016 Merit Award winner for her leadership in health care innovation and her extensive work on behalf of Montana physicians.

Michael Frank

Senior Vice President, Tri-State Plans
As senior vice president, Tri-State Plans, which includes responsibility over the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans in Montana, New Mexico and Oklahoma, Mike Frank provides a strategic view in how HCSC serves its members in these states.

Frank assumed his current position over the Tri-State Plans in 2016 and previously, he served as president of the Montana plan. Frank also served as a chief legal and operations officer, chief administrative officer, vice president of Corporate Integrity and Human Resources, and vice president of Compliance and Ethics.
Before joining BCBSMT in 1999, he was a practicing attorney with Crowley, Haughey, Hanson, Toole & Dietrich, PPLP, headquartered in Helena, Montana.

He earned his Bachelor of Science in psychology from Montana State University and his Juris Doctor from the University of Montana.

Joseph R. Cunningham, M.D., FACOG

President, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma (BCBSOK)

Dr. Joseph R. Cunningham is responsible for the overall strategic direction of BCBSOK, including operations, sales and account management, network management, health care management, medical policy and external affairs. BCBSOK is the state's oldest and largest private health insurer.

Dr. Cunningham joined BCBSOK in 2007 as the medical director of Medical Services over Utilization Management and Case Management Departments. In 2009, he was named the company’s vice president of Health Care Management and chief medical officer. In 2014, Dr. Cunningham became the vice president of Health Care Delivery and chief medical officer, overseeing both medical and network provider areas. In 2015, he was named BCBSOK’s divisional senior vice president of Health Care Delivery and chief medical officer, where he was responsible for the transition from fee-for-service to fee-for-value and value-based program development. In October 2018, Dr. Cunningham was named Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma’s 10th president.

Prior to joining BCBSOK, Dr. Cunningham spent nearly 21 years in private practice in Tulsa. He is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. He is a member of both the Oklahoma State Medical Association and the Tulsa County Medical Society.

Dr. Cunningham earned an undergraduate degree in chemistry and attended medical school at the University of Arkansas. He also completed post-graduate studies at the University of Oklahoma – Tulsa.

Dan McCoy, M.D.

President, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX)

Dr. Dan McCoy is responsible for all Texas Plan operations, including the management for sales and account management, provider network contracting, medical management, government relations and public affairs.

Most recently, he served as divisional senior vice president of Texas Market Strategy and Texas chief medical officer. Dr. McCoy served in this role since 2014 and was instrumental in the Texas Plan’s growth and Latino strategies in addition to its efforts to lower the costs of care.

Dr. McCoy brings a broad perspective of the local health care delivery system as a physician for the past 21 years, former managing partner at Texas Dermatology Associates and medical director of the Melanoma and Skin Tumor Clinic at Baylor University Medical Center’s Outpatient Cancer Center.

He holds a bachelor's degree from Tarleton State University and a degree in medicine from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.

Kurt Shipley

President, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico (BCBSNM)

Kurt Shipley is responsible for developing and implementing the mission, vision, and strategic initiatives of BCBSNM to support membership growth and retention and ensure financial stability and long-term success of the organization.

Shipley is responsible for company-wide performance, membership growth, financial management, product development, network management, marketing and sales, public relations, government/legislative affairs, community relations and media relations. In addition, he oversees the administration of the Indian Health Service/Purchase Referred Care program, which provides services for 2.3 million eligible Native Americans and Alaska Natives across the United States. He also has responsibility for the performance of the Blue Cross Community Centennial Medicaid contract.

Shipley joined BCBSNM in 1996 and was named New Mexico Plan President in 2012. Prior to joining BCBSNM, Shipley worked at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Colorado and was responsible for internal and external financial reporting.

Shipley is a certified public accountant and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Brigham Young University.

Maurice Smith

President, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL)

As president, Maurice Smith is responsible for the overall strategic direction for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois including the organization's long-term growth strategy, planning and performance.

Before assuming his current position in 2015, Smith held roles of increasing responsibility at Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC) including his previous role as senior vice president of Treasury, Business Development and Subsidiary Management. In this role, Smith was responsible for mergers and acquisitions, corporate financial forecasting and strategic relationships.

He also previously served as vice president, Corporate Transactions and Business Analysis and as chairman of the Board of Directors for Dearborn National Life Insurance Co., HCSC's largest subsidiary.

Smith currently serves as chair-elect for the Chicago Sinfonietta and serves on the Board of Trustees for Roosevelt University.

Smith holds a bachelor's degree in business administration with a concentration in accounting from Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois. He also holds a master's degree in business administration from Pepperdine University.

Steve Betts

Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer

Steve Betts is responsible for all HCSC’s technology needs and works to ensure that HCSC’s technology organization delivers both operational excellence and innovation across group, government and retail business segments. He also oversees Analytics Governance and Stewardship.

Previously, Betts was chief information officer at Aon, a global provider of risk management, insurance and human resources solutions, where he was responsible for all aspects of global IT, including the launch of two innovative health care exchanges by the company’s HR Solutions business. Before joining Aon in 2003, Betts led large-scale technology implementations in the financial services sector and other industries for PricewaterhouseCoopers.

He graduated from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology in the United Kingdom with a BSc in mathematics and management science and also from the Global Executive Program at the Kellogg School of Management.

Kevin Cassidy

President, Employer Solutions

Kevin Cassidy oversees HCSC’s Enterprise National Accounts, small group market management, group markets operations and product performance, and group planning and investments.

Before assuming his current position in 2018, Cassidy was president of Enterprise National Accounts, which focuses on group customers with more than 10,000 employees, supports more than 3.5 million group members and manages medical claim costs exceeding $30 billion. He led employer group strategy and worked closely with brokers, benefit consultants and customers to build and maintain partnerships that ensure success.

Previously, he was senior vice president of Enterprise Sales and Account Management and Illinois Markets. Since joining the company in 1992, Cassidy has held positions in sales, client management, government contracts and operations, including vice president of National and Labor Accounts.

He holds a master’s degree in business administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree in communications and economics from Illinois State University.

Opella Ernest, M.D.

Senior Vice President and HCSC Chief Clinical Officer

Opella Ernest is responsible for HCSC medical policy and quality and accreditation. She also oversees the company’s health care policy efforts in support of members and the HCSC business strategy to help ensure effective and efficient delivery of quality medical care.

Before assuming her current position in 2016, Ernest was divisional senior vice president of Health Care Delivery and chief medical officer for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, where she managed the strategic direction of network development and management.

Prior to joining BCBSIL, Ernest was responsible for the clinical model of care for dual eligible members as senior vice president, Medical Management, for HealthSpring, Inc.

Ernest, a board certified family physician, earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and medical degree from the Ohio State University College of Medicine.

Eric Feldstein

Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Eric Feldstein is responsible for HCSC's accounting, financial planning, treasury, tax and procurement activities. He also oversees the company's actuarial group and decision-making processes related to underwriting and product pricing. Eric joined HCSC in 2016 after serving as executive vice president of American Express Company's Enterprise Growth Group. He also held senior operating and finance positions at other Fortune 100 companies, including vice president of finance and treasurer at General Motors Corporation, CFO and CEO of GMAC Financial Services, and Chairman of GMAC Insurance. Eric's leadership roles within financial services has provided him with extensive experience in the property and casualty, life and various other insurance lines.

Feldstein holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Columbia University.

Rob Hitchcock

President, Government and Consumer Solutions

Rob Hitchcock oversees retail business, Medicare and Medicaid programs, as well as the Government Programs Division, retail strategy and analytics. He has nearly 20 years experience in health care with the majority of his experience in the health insurance industry overseeing commercial, Medicare and Medicaid health plans.

Most recently, he was chief strategy officer for Fresenius Medical Care North America where he worked closely with the company’s executive leadership team to execute short and long-term strategic goals and to help move the company toward valued-based reimbursement.

Before Fresenius, Hitchcock was executive vice president, Health Plans, for Centene Corporation where he was responsible for 20 markets that had 4.5 million members and generated $19 billion in revenue.

He graduated from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City with a bachelor degree in economics and a bachelor degree in sociology. He then went on to earn a master’s degree in health services administration from the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond.

Thomas Lubben

Senior Vice President, Compliance, Audit, Security, Special Investigations, Privacy and Regulatory Oversight, and Enterprise Risk Management; Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer

Thomas Lubben is responsible for Health Care Service Corporation’s (HCSC) Compliance, Audit, Security, Special Investigations, Privacy and Regulatory Oversight divisions (CASSIP) and Enterprise Risk Management.

Previously, Lubben was vice president and corporate secretary of HCSC, where he oversaw corporate secretarial and governance matters. He joined HCSC's Legal Division in 1996 where he provided legal support in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, pharmacy, compliance, human resources and litigation.

Lubben has a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Calvin College and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois, College of Law.

Andy Napoli

Senior Vice President and Chief Customer Service Officer

Andy Napoli is responsible for claims, customer service and membership administration for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

A veteran of nearly 15 years in the U.S. Army, including a combat tour during the First Gulf War, he has worked at a number of other major companies, including The Hartford Financial Services Group, Nationwide and Progressive.

Napoli is a West Point graduate with a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics, and he has a master’s degree in statistics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Nazneen Razi

Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer

As senior vice president and chief human resources officer, Nazneen Razi provides leadership and direction for Human Resources operations, programs and initiatives. Her responsibilities include staffing and selection, performance management and development, compensation and benefits, workforce relations, labor relations and employee services. She also oversees corporate diversity and corporate real estate development.

Prior to joining HCSC in 2011, Razi was responsible for setting HR strategy for Jones Lang LaSalle, a 40,000-employee, $3 billion global real estate services company with operations in 60 countries. Previously, she was responsible for key business and HR decisions for Comdisco, a Fortune 500 global technology services company.

Razi has more than 20 years of HR leadership experience in large, diverse and complex organizations. She has four degrees, including a Ph.D. in organizational development and an MBA in operations management and organizational behavior from Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois.

Jeffrey Tikkanen

President, Plan Solutions and Market Delivery

Jeffrey Tikkanen oversees HCSC’s Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans in five states covering more than 16 million members. This includes overall responsibility for HCSC’s network solutions and provider partnerships, policy and government relations, pharmacy, branding and stakeholder impact, and Dearborn National, HCSC’s largest subsidiary.

Previously, he was president of Emerging Markets, where he was responsible for government programs and retail markets, as well as federal government relations, which he continues to oversee. While at the helm of the retail business, Tikkanen transformed a relatively small part of the organization to a significant portion of its business, which provides access to health care to more than 1 million members.

Tikkanen has been with HCSC since 1993 and has served in a variety of management roles before being named a divisional vice president in Illinois National Accounts in 2005. In 2008, he moved to Oklahoma to assume the role of vice president of Sales and Marketing.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Michigan.

Blair W. Todt

Senior Vice President, Legal, Compliance and Business Performance

Blair W. Todt is responsible for HCSC’s Legal, Compliance, Audit, Security, Special Investigations, and Privacy (CASSIP) divisions, as well as Corporate Strategy and Business Performance Monitoring. In addition, he oversees other enterprise risk management services, including corporate governance and transactions, state and federal regulatory affairs, litigation and CASSIP matters affecting HCSC and its five Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans. Todt also serves as HCSC’s chief legal officer.

Before joining HCSC, Todt worked at WellCare Health Plans, where he held several senior management positions, including senior vice president, chief legal and administrative officer and secretary.

Todt earned a bachelor’s degree in political communication from George Washington University and a Juris Doctor from Brooklyn Law School.

Last Updated: Jan. 07, 2020