Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower – Steve Jobs.
AIRROC presented its annual Person of the Year Award for 2021 to Glen Mulready, the Commissioner of Insurance for the State of Oklahoma. His “work advocating for a new era of runoff opportunities in the United States has been unmatched.” Robert Redpath, Senior VP and Corporate Counsel, Enstar. His role in completing the first two successful multi-million-dollar insurance business transfers (“IBTs”) in the country put Oklahoma on the forefront of IBTs.
While Oklahoma did not invent this process, their statute is broader than those enacted in the other states that have IBT laws, namely Rhode Island and Arkansas. Oklahoma’s process closely mirrors Part VII transfers authorized under the UK Financial Services and Markets Act of 2000. Part VII transfers in the UK are a well-recognized cost-effective way to move a portfolio of business. As stated on the Oklahoma Insurance Department website, the statute “provides the transferring and assuming companies with an efficient and straightforward transfer process while also providing the legal finality that has not yet been available in the United States.”
This favorable venue for insurance companies was the result of Commissioner Mulready’s extensive background in the industry as well as his leadership in driving innovation and getting results. After a successful 25+ years in the industry, he moved to the political sphere as a state representative where he became chairman of the Oklahoma State Insurance Committee after the 2014 elections and the Majority Floor Leader in 2017. His combination of knowledge and innovative enthusiasm set the stage in creating a problem-solving atmosphere in Oklahoma, improving the business climate for insurance companies and expanding insurance options for citizens of the state. In addition to spearheading the legislation and shepherding the first two IBTs across the finishing line in his last two years as Commissioner, “he has traveled to many AIRROC and other industry events … always bringing wisdom and lending credibility to runoff.” Carolyn Fahey, AIRROC Executive Director, remarks during presentation of the award. In 2019, he was the first US Insurance Commissioner to speak at IRLA, the UK and European legacy association.
In accepting the award, Commissioner Mulready noted that Oklahoma welcomed the opportunity to be an innovator in the runoff space and raise its profile as an insurance center, making it well positioned to collaborate with the runoff sector on the law. He credited a stellar team in bringing the IBT law to fruition: his predecessor Former Commissioner John Doak, Andy Schallhorn, current Oklahoma Deputy Commissioner and Chief Actuary, as well as John Sparks of Odom & Sparks — who was a state senator at the time the bill was passed and a co-sponsor of the bill. He expressed gratitude to AIRROC for its help in educating regulators on the opportunities presented by runoff business and predicted that the expeditious accomplishment of the first two IBT transactions would establish excellent momentum going forward.
We hope to include a more extensive profile of Commissioner Mulready in a future issue of AIRROC Update.