Sales Congress Speakers

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Denisse Bravo, Owner Bravo Issurance Solutions

 

Denisse Bravo is the agency owner of Bravo Insurance Solutions located in Tucson, Arizona.

 

The eldest of 3 children, Denisse was born and raised in Mexico until the age of 14 when her family emigrated to the United States.

 

Denisse lived in the pacific northwest and shortly moved to much drier shores where she has never left since.

 

A graduate of the University of Arizona with two degrees - one in Psychology and one Spanish Linguistics with a minor on Portuguese she decided to take a “brief sabbatical'' in the insurance world before starting her masters degree. That allowed her to dip her toes into the Property and Casualty field of insurance and quickly evolved into her running an agency at American Family Insurance. After years of living in the captive world she left that agency to build the Property and Casualty side of Bravo Insurance Solutions, a family run agency since 1986. Quickly realizing that Health and Life Insurance were much more fun she became interested in honing in those skills and joined NAHU and SAAHU.

 

Denisse became the president of SAAHU in 2018 and is now the President elect of the Arizona State Association of Health Underwriters.

 

She lives in Oro Valley with her handsome husband Michael Bravo, a passionate and involved NAHU member and her son Zander Bravo, a 12 year old who is an avid thespian, basketball player and soccer goalie.

 

In her spare time - which is not much, Denisse is part of the Worship team at her church, helps lead a book club and practices Kempo Karate- a family passion for the last 13 years.

 

Denisse Bravo is the agency owner of Bravo Insurance Solutions located in Tucson, Arizona.

 

The eldest of 3 children, Denisse was born and raised in Mexico until the age of 14 when her family emigrated to the United States.

 

Denisse lived in the pacific northwest and shortly moved to much drier shores where she has never left since.

 

A graduate of the University of Arizona with two degrees - one in Psychology and one Spanish Linguistics with a minor on Portuguese she decided to take a “brief sabbatical'' in the insurance world before starting her masters degree. That allowed her to dip her toes into the Property and Casualty field of insurance and quickly evolved into her running an agency at American Family Insurance. After years of living in the captive world she left that agency to build the Property and Casualty side of Bravo Insurance Solutions, a family run agency since 1986. Quickly realizing that Health and Life Insurance were much more fun she became interested in honing in those skills and joined NAHU and SAAHU.

 

Denisse became the president of SAAHU in 2018 and is now the President elect of the Arizona State Association of Health Underwriters.

 

She lives in Oro Valley with her handsome husband Michael Bravo, a passionate and involved NAHU member and her son Zander Bravo, a 12 year old who is an avid thespian, basketball player and soccer goalie.

 

In her spare time - which is not much, Denisse is part of the Worship team at her church, helps lead a book club and practices Kempo Karate- a family passion for the last 13 years.

 

Representative Jim Dunnigan

 

Representative Jim Dunnigan is a dedicated public servant and advocate for the residents of Taylorsville and Kearns, Utah. He served on the Taylorsville-Bennion Community Council from 1991 to 1996 and helped organize Taylorsville as a city, then served on its inaugural City Council from 1996 to 2002.

Dunnigan is a small business owner in Taylorsville. Dunnigan Insurance specializes in employee benefits.  He received his bachelor’s degree in science in Business Management from the University of Utah.

He enjoys playing competitive volleyball and his team recently took the Gold Medal in their division at the Huntsman World Games.

He has served on the Truth Initiative board of directors since 2019.

 

Janet Trautwein, CEO NAHU

 

Janet Trautwein is the Chief Executive Officer of the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) and President of the National Association of Health Underwriters Education Foundation in Washington, D.C.  NAHU represents more than 100,000 employee benefits professionals involved in the design, implementation and management of health plans all over the United States.  Her responsibilities include oversight of all NAHU and NAHU Education Foundation activities including oversight for 30 staff members in Washington, DC and 210 state and local chapters.   She is the primary spokesperson for NAHU to the media, government agencies and elected officials at all levels.  A frequent speaker on health policy issues, Janet’s expertise in issues related to health insurance markets, the uninsured, health insurance pools, risk and reinsurance pooling, health related tax issues, and both national and global health reform has been recognized throughout the industry. Janet has testified before Congress numerous times, and has been published in major newspapers, including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The New York Times and has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs around the world.

 

Dr. Peter Weir, Director of Population Health for University of Utah Health

 

Peter Weir currently serves as the Executive Medical Director of Population Health for the University of Utah. Dr. Weir trained as a family medicine physician and completed a Masters of Public Health, which sparked his interest in population health. Clinically, he has a strong interest in managing chronic diseases with an interdisciplinary team. He also has experience working in the employer setting, running an onsite clinic that has a strong population health focus. Currently at the University of Utah, his responsibilities include starting a clinic for “high-need/high-cost” patients and initiating a Hospital at Home program. He is passionate about redefining how health care is delivered with a desire to make it affordable, accessible, and patient-centered.

 

Commissioner Jon Pike

 

Commissioner Jon Pike was raised in Salt Lake City and worked in several positions with Intermountain Healthcare since 1990 and since 1995 in St. George. Most recently, he served as the southwest Utah operations director for SelectHealth, the health insurance division of Intermountain Healthcare. Pike’s career has focused on physician relations and contracting, broker relations, sales management, and government and community liaison. He has been a member of the National Association of Healthcare Underwriters and the Utah Association of Healthcare Underwriters for many years.

In 2007, Pike was elected to the St. George City Council and in 2013 he was elected mayor of St. George. He serves on the boards of Dixie State University, Dixie Technology College, the Washington County Water Conservancy District, Encircle St. George, and previously as the president of the Utah League of Cities and Towns. He also served as the chair of the Rural Matters group for the Cox-Henderson Transition Team.

Pike received a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Utah and an MBA from Westminster College. Pike loves singing, playing the piano, organ, and guitar, as well as water and snow skiing, motorcycling, and walking or biking on St. George’s many trails. He and his wife Kristy have five children and four grandchildren.

Thursday, May 20, 2021

 

Reid Rasmussen, Co-Founder & CEO, freshbenies

Passionate speaker. Strategist. Innovator. Writer. 30-year healthcare veteran. Free-market health reform advocate. Coffee addict. Born a Canadian, and now a proud American! Co-Founder & CEO of freshbenies – a 4-timer on Inc5000’s fastest growing company list & a recipient of 2 Health Value Awards. To date, freshbenies has saved clients over $85 million in unnecessary claims.

In 2019, Reid was awarded the Texas Association of Health Underwriter’s Hollis Roberson Award for Outstanding Dedication to the Industry.

Reid grew up in Canada, received a Health Administration degree & formed his opinions about government-run health care. In 1991, he escaped to America and worked for two health insurance carriers and two General Agencies.

As the Affordable Care Act ramped up, Reid was concerned with the high out of pocket costs and lack of control many Americans experienced. In 2009 he launched freshbenies - an engagement platform to help people control their healthcare. They combine practical tools such as advocacy, telehealth, and consumerism savings networks.

Hospital Panel

 

  Howard Weeks, MD, MBA, Chief Medical Director at University of Utah Health Plans
 

Howard Weeks, MD, MBA, Professor (Clinical), graduated from the "Triple Board" Program at the University of Utah. He is trained in child & adolescent psychiatry, adult psychiatry and pediatrics as well as clinical informatics. He serves as the Chief Medical Director at University of Utah Health Plans and was former Associate Chief and Interim Chief Medical Information Officer for University Health.

Since joining the University faculty in 2002, he has been active in many of the clinical services at the former University Neuropsychiatric Institute, now Huntsman Mental Health Institute. He has been the Medical Director of Youth Services and the Division Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, the Assistant Medical Director of ECT/TMS Services and the Medical Director of the Comprehensive Assessment and Treatment Program. In addition to clinical work he is involved in the administrative functions of the University of Utah Medical Group. As Associate Chief Medical Information Officer, he focused on improvement in clinical documentation thru the Epic EMR. He is the Chair of Medical Records of University Health. He also consults with Alpine Academy in the care for adolescent patients in residential care.

He is active in the community and served as the President of the Utah Psychiatric Association. He has been honored with the designation of “Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association” by his colleagues. He is the current President Elect of the Utah Medical Association.

Dr. Weeks’ areas of expertise are in treatment resistant mood disorders, inpatient child psychiatry, Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT), Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) and care of patients in Residential Treatment Care (RTC) facilities. He is very involved in process improvement and efficiency in the delivery of healthcare specifically with Patient Reported Outcomes. Dr. Weeks has a strong interest in educating medical students, residents and attendings about personal finances and the impact that has on career choices. He actively lectures to a variety of groups on these topics.

 

  Jennifer Wagenaar BSN, MBA, CPHQ, FACHE, CENP, Chief Nursing Executive, HCA- Mountain Division
 

Jennifer Wagenaar is the Chief Nursing Executive for HCA’s Mountain Division. In this position, Jennifer oversees the overall strategic direction for the practice of nursing operations across 11 hospitals throughout Utah, Idaho and Alaska. Jennifer previously served as the Chief Nursing Officer for West Valley Medical Center, a HCA Healthcare System facility. Prior to coming to HCA, Jennifer worked for Sanford Health System, a 53-hospital system as CNO for a start-up hospital in South Dakota. Her 14 years with Sanford Health also included various leadership roles including system oversight of quality, medical staff services, and risk management.

Jennifer enjoys transforming care through empowering staff at all levels to be the best caregiver, advocate and colleague they can be. Her 20-year career from staff nurse to nursing executive highlights her commitment to the translation of data to information, evidence to practice, and learning to teaching. 

In addition to her current work with HCA, Jennifer has also served as a board member of the Nurse Leaders of Idaho and member of the Utah Organization of Nurse Leaders.

Jennifer earned her bachelor of science in nursing from South Dakota State University and master of business administration from University of Sioux Falls.  She is a certified professional in healthcare quality, Certified in Executive Nurse Practice, and a Fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives.

 

  Kristin Dascomb, MD, PhD, Medical Director of Infection Prevention Office of Patient Experience,
Intermountain Healthcare
 

Dr. Kristin Dascomb is originally from New Orleans, and trained in Med/Peds at Charity Hospital. She was a chief resident during Hurricane Katrina and in its aftermath, supporting her residents to ensure they achieved their educational goals, and supporting the area hospitals’ staffing needs. 

Dr. Dascomb completed her Infectious Diseases fellowship at the University of Utah, and has been with Intermountain Healthcare’s division of Infectious Diseases since that time.  She supported many of our Infection Prevention and Employee health issues including Ebola preparation, MDRO mitigation, outbreak investigation, Hospital acquired infection reductions, and pandemic preparation.  She joined the Office of Patient experience in 2017 as Medical Director of Infection Prevention and Control and Employee Health to support all Intermountain facilities in their approaches to patient and caregiver safety. During the COVID-19 pandemic response, she lead the Infectious Diseases and Infection Prevention team in their guidance and recommendations for the safety of Intermountain patients and caregivers.   

 

Stephen D. Neeleman, MD, Founder and Vice Chairman, Health Equity

Dr. Stephen Neeleman is the founder and vice chairman of HealthEquity. Steve founded HealthEquity in 2002, with the vision to repair the fractured relationship between patients and their physicians and to help more people obtain quality health insurance by re-introducing consumerism to health care. Steve is the co-author of The Complete HSA Guidebook—How to Make Health Savings Accounts Work for You. In addition to his duties as founder and vice chairman of HealthEquity, Steve was also a practicing general and trauma surgeon for Intermountain Healthcare at American Fork Hospital and Utah Valley Regional Medical Center until 2015. As a board-certified physician, Steve brings his passion and firsthand knowledge from the practice of medicine to his leadership role at HealthEquity.

Steve was appointed by Utah’s Governor, Gary Herbert, to serve as a board member of HIP Utah, Utah’s high-risk insurance pool. He also serves on the Council for Affordable
Health Insurance HSA Working Group, and on America’s Health Insurance Plans’ HSA Leadership Council.

Prior to his medical training, Steve worked as the general airport manager for Morris Air (later acquired by Southwest Airlines), based in Salt Lake City, Utah. Steve helped combine efficiency, technology, and excellent customer service to succeed in a rocky industry. This innovative business model allowed Morris Air to rise above financially struggling competitors. Steve’s goal is to use this model to help save another struggling industry—health care. Steve completed his undergraduate degree and played football at Utah State University. He attended medical school at the University of Utah and completed his surgical training at the University of Arizona. Steve also served as an assistant professor of surgery at the University of Arizona.

“HealthEquity’s mission is to save health care by helping people better save and spend their health care dollars. HSAs are key to our mission and they are quickly changing the way the people purchase, consume, and provide health care. HealthEquity’s remarkable team members help individuals, families, and businesses understand and reap the triple-tax advantaged benefits that come with HSAs. I love being part of this team!”

 

Jessica Waltman, Principal, Forward Health Consulting

Jessica Waltman has more than twenty years of experience in health insurance markets and is considered an industry-wide expert on all of the complex laws and regulations essential to maintaining a compliant employee benefits arrangement.  At MZQ Consulting, she leads the compliance consulting and services team, providing subject matter expertise and spearheading a variety of business initiatives. In addition to her work at MZQ, in 2015, Jessica launched Forward Health Consulting where she’s advised dozens of brokers, employers, associations and benefit technology firms about health reform and business strategy issues.

Jessica has experience teaching live continuing education classes for brokers in 35 states and is a certified online instructor in all 50. She designed and served as the principal author and instructor for a 10-part certification program for health insurance agents and brokers and consultants entitled, Employer Sponsored Plans In a Post-ACA World, and wrote the accompanying textbook. 

Before launching her consulting practice, Jessica served the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) for sixteen years, including eight years as their Senior Vice President of Government Affairs. Earlier in her career, Jessica worked on public health policy issues with a private contracting firm and did a brief stint on Capitol Hill.  Jessica earned her degree in political science and non-fiction writing magna cum laude from Drew University in Madison, NJ. 

Jessica currently serves her industry as chair of the National Association of Health Underwriters’ Future Issues Advisory Council and is the legislative chair of the Pennsylvania Association of Health Underwriters.  She is also on the leadership team of the Wonder Women in the Health Insurance Industry mastermind group and serves on the Board of Trustees of the National Insurance Producers Registry, a position she’s held for the past seventeen years. 

Jessica holds a variety of volunteer positions within her community.  She is an active member of two parent-teacher organizations in the Radnor Township public schools and is an elected member of the Parish Pastoral Council of Saint Katharine of Siena Roman Catholic Church in Wayne, PA.  In addition, she teaches 4th graders in the parish’s religious education program and serves other women as a volunteer small group facilitator for the Walking With Purpose organization.

Jessica lives in the village of Wayne, PA with her hilarious and always accommodating husband, Doug. Rounding out her loving, but at times chaotic, home are an exuberant springer spaniel named Owen, Abby the aggrieved tabby cat, and three of the cleverest and attractive children you could ever imagine—Madeline, Billy and Luke Waltman. Jessica and Abby are frequently spotted together seeking nonexistent peace and quiet in the basement. 

 

Greg Matis, Deputy General Counsel, Intermountain Healthcare

Mr. Matis has practiced health law for over 30 years. He is Vice President and Interim General Counsel with Intermountain Healthcare where he leads the Legal & Government Relations Department. Before joining Intermountain, Greg also served as in-house counsel to several other organizations, including First Health, the country’s largest third-party administrator.  Prior to that, he was associated with the Salt Lake City law firm of Kimball, Parr, Waddoups, Brown & Gee.

He frequently speaks and writes on healthcare-related topics. He is on the faculty of the Intermountain Healthcare Leadership Institute, and is an adjunct professor at the J. Reuben Clark Law School at BYU, where he teaches classes on health law and policy and leadership.

Greg clerked for the Honorable Stephen H. Anderson of the Tenth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.  He graduated, with honors, from the University of Chicago Law School, where he was on the managing board of the University of Chicago Law Review.  He also has a B.A., magna cum laude, from Brigham Young University.

 

Derek Brown, UAHU Lobbyist

Derek Brown is the current lobbyist for the Utah Association of Healthcare Underwriters, and is the Managing Partner of Utah Policy Advocates.  He is an attorney, formerly served in the Utah House of Representatives, served as Deputy Chief of Staff to Senator Mike Lee, and as Chief Counsel to Senator Bob Bennett. He has also served as Vice President of National Government Relations for a large technology and healthcare company based in Utah.

 

U of U Coach Beth Launiere, University of Utah Volleyball Coach

Beth Launiere enters her 31st season at the helm of the University of Utah volleyball program in 2020 and is coming off one of the most successful seasons in the program's history.

Launiere was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year in 2019 after leading Utah to a 24-10 record, a third-place finish in the Pac-12 and the program's fourth Sweet 16 appearance (two in the last three years), with four players named to the All-American team. Along with earning her first Pac-12 Coach of the Year honor, she also was named the AVCA West Region Coach of the Year for the fourth time (2001, '06, '08, '19). She had been named the Mountain West Conference (MWC) Coach of the Year three times (2004, '06, '08).

Beth is a past president of the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA). She has also coached in the USA National Team program for the past 11 years.