2008 Career Development Seminar (CDS)

The Gateway to Regulator Excellence

The 2008 annual Career Development Seminar—The Gateway to Regulator Excellence—was held August 10-12, 2008, in downtown St. Louis, Missouri. Once again, the CDS was packed full of session that will help CDS attendees be more effective in their job as they strive toward excellence.

This year, a group of early arrivals got together before the CDS began to do a little swing dancing. This unofficial outing organized by members of the IRES Membership and Benefits Committee occurred on Saturday night and provided a chance for all “hep cats and kittens” of IRES to dance the night away.

The CDS officially kicked on Sunday evening with the traditional Welcome Reception. As usual, the reception provided an opportunity to socialize and network with colleagues, reconnect with old friends and a chance to meet new colleagues.

Monday morning, the CDS began by recognizing those individuals that over the last year have met the rigorous requirements to earn the Society’s professional designation, the AIE and CIE. In addition, the first ever class of MCM’s, the Society’s newest professional designation were also recognized.

The conferment ceremony was followed by a roundtable discussion, moderated by Art Chartrand, featuring NAIC President and Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, Oregon Insurance Administrator Scott Kipper, and Deirdre Manna of the Property Casualty Insurers Association.

Commissioner Praeger also provided the keynote address during the Monday luncheon which included the presentation of the Al Greer Award, Schrader-Nelson Publications Awards and a special Lifetime Achievement Award:

  • This year’s recipient of the Al Greer Award is Ron Musser of the Louisiana Department of Insurance. Mr. Musser was nominated by an entire unit within the department and seconded by the department itself. After 30 years as a regulator, Mr. Musser is constantly called upon by the Commissioner and other staff for guidance. His expertise and knowledge is appreciated by everyone he works with and he is a great role model. Mr. Musser has been instrumental in drafting insurance legislation for the Department, represents the Department on various NAIC working groups and has been a presenter at IRES Foundation Schools, State IRES Chapter Meetings, IRES CDS and numerous other conferences and meetings. Most of all, he is honest and impartial, and unfailing in his dedication to the department.
  • The Schrader Nelson Publications Award for the best article in the Society’s newsletter, The Regulator®, was awarded to Mark Rukavina for his article entitled “Medical Debt Threatens Millions” which appeared in the May 2008 issue of The Regulator®.
  • In addition, a special presentation was made to Scott Hoober for his work over the years for IRES on The Regulator, the website and at the CDS.

To wrap up the day on Monday, the members of the IRES Membership and Benefits Committee organized another unofficial social outing and a group of attendees headed off for an evening of retro bowling and shooting pool at the city’s premier bowling and cocktail lounge, the Flamingo Bowl. While no one bowled a perfect game, fun was had by all!

Tuesday morning began with an up lifting and humorous session on Facing Change – with Humor & Optimism. This general session led by Award-winning comedian and author on humor and business Doni Tamblyn, provided CDS attendees with a new way to look at things, face change and ways to help introduce humor in the workplace to produce results.

At the luncheon on Tuesday, President Chan presented this year’s President’s Award to Karen Dyke, of the Nebraska Insurance Department. Karen has been an IRES member since 1987 and has served on a variety of committees including Budget and Finance, Membership & Benefits and Meetings & Elections. Ms. Dyke has served as the Nebraska State Chair and most recently concluded her third and final year as IRES Treasurer. As Treasurer, Ms. Dyke worked tirelessly to keep track of all accounting transactions, arrange for different kinds of insurance, and promote expense containment. In addition to assisting IRES, Ms. Dyke was a market conduct examiner from 1986 until 2003 when she joined the Consumer Affairs Division. She is known for her thoughtful protection of consumers and diligent efforts in accomplishing any task that she is presented with.

The CDS also featured a variety of breakout sessions that covered a wide range of topics

Consumer Services

  • I’m From the Government and I’m Here to Help
    A discussion of NAIC tools and campaigns | Consumer Publications | Best Practices at the DOI | Insure U | Fight Fake Insurance | Portal Applications | Consumer Alerts | Consumer Information Source (CIS).
  • Sharing the Baby: In Search of a Joint Regulatory Scheme for Senior Health Markets
    A panel discussion with CMS, state regulators and industry representatives of Medicare private plans, regulation, and enforcement.
  • Analyze That: What’s in your complaints? Complaint Data Analysis-Trending
    How states analyze complaint data, how complaints are reviewed in market conduct exams and information on NAIC systems and processes used with CDS (Complaint Data System) and CIS (Consumer Information Source).
  • There Oughta Be a Law: Consumer Services Roundtable
    The panel addressed issues, questions, problems, complaints, and ideas presented by the audience.

Enforcement & Compliance

  • Are Viatical Settlements Really Vital, Valuable and Settling?
    A discussion of how viatical settlements affect the insurance industry and possible fraudulent activity from the perspective of all parties involved.
  • Binding Arbitration: Knowing Your Rights – and Wrongs?
    The advantages and disadvantages of insurance policies that have binding arbitration provisions and a discussion of whether consumers understand their rights or their loss of rights.
  • SERFF on the MOVE?
    Information on SERFF, the growing trend of insurance departments mandating the use of SERFF and a discussion about to the questions 1) is SERFF the answer to uniformity and 2) has SERFF improved the filing of forms.
  • When a Rose is Not a Rose: Insurance Products in Disguise
    Innovation in the marketplace is on the rise and greatly encouraged. Some insurance products are not being sold as insurance. A discussion on whether these products should meet regulatory standards.


  • Corporate Governance: Evaluating Management
    A review corporate governance: Risk identification, control objectives, and the need to document your assessment.
  • Risk Focused Exams for the Small Companies
    Information on how to examine smaller companies that do not have to comply with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act or the new model audit rule.
  • Reinsurance: Is Cash Still King?
    A look at the various credit for reinsurance proposals that have been proposed. The NAIC’s RSRD, New York’s, Florida’s and the Federal proposal (HR 1065).
  • Financial Section Roundtable 
    Provided a chance for CDS attendees to ask all questions about the new risk-focused exam process.

Life & Health

  • Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?
    A discussion of the readability of forms used by regulators and the insurance industry.
  • Unauthorized Insurance – What Is Unauthorized Insurance and how can we regulate it?
    A candid discussion of what is Unauthorized (unlicensed) Insurance and how it can be detected and regulated.
  • Putting Together the Pieces
    The best practices approach to working with NAIC Standardized Data Request (SDRs) and how to use the SDR to target an exam or investigative issue for a life and health carrier.
  • The Hidden Cost of Health Insurance
    A discussion of Accident and Health insurance and the hidden costs of major medical and consumer driven health plans.

Market Regulation

  • MCM Designation Mini Session
    Provided a sneak peak at topics covered in the new IRES Market Conduct Management (MCM) designation program course.
  • Building a Better Mouse Trap – An update on Automated Market Regulation Tools
    NAIC staff and seasoned market regulators reviewed NAIC and state tools for market analysis, including baseline scoring; Level 1 and Level 2 Market Analysis; MITS and methods for trending. Plus they covered the enhancements that make good tools even better.
  • Searching for Mr. and Ms. Right – Company Exam Coordinators and EIC’s
    Industry and regulator provided their views on the “ideal” EIC and company exam coordinator and how companies and regulators can address each other’s needs—before, during and after an exam—to complete the work on time and within budget.
  • Market Regulation Roundtable
    A panel of regulators, industry compliance personnel and consumer representative discussed current market regulation hot topics and other issues brought to the table by the audience.

Regulatory Compliance

  • The Market Conduct Annual Statement – An Insurer Perspective
    The Market Conduct Annual Statement has expanded to 29 states in 2008! A discussion of what challenges have insurers encountered with the MCAS and some tips on making this item less painful and more productive.
  • Market Analysis – The Track Record Thus Far
    Market Analysis was intended to reduce the volume of Market Conduct exams. Insurers discussed what they have found in terms of the volume and types of exams.
  • What Is “MCM” All About?
    A discussion from a panel of key regulators and industry personnel about what they think of IRES’s new Market Conduct Management course, its benefits and what can you expect to get out of it?
  • Get Your Questions Answered Here!
    A panel of key regulators and industry personnel answered questions from the audience about the market conduct process and other compliance issues.

Property & Casualty

  • The Evolution of Risk Purchasing and Risk Retention Groups
    A discussion of risk retention groups and risk purchasing groups, the legislative history behind the Liability Risk Retention Act and changes on the horizon, the current regulatory framework, changes in corporate governance standards, and financial reporting standards now under consideration.
  • Hey Doc, Can You Spare Some Data?
    A discussion of the reports by the NAIC and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) involving the inability to acquire adequate data to study market failures, medical liability marketplaces and NAIC’s efforts to develop a model law on medical malpractice data reporting and the challenges of obtaining data from certain med mal insurance providers.
  • Nat CAT: An Animal of a Different Color
    A discussion of Management of natural disasters and acts of terrorism and the recent extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act.
  • Who Ya Gonna Call When Ya Can’t Get Coverage? Guess I Better Call E&S
    Provided an overview of the markets served by excess and surplus lines carriers, including a discussion of current issues facing E&S carriers and how states regulate E&S carriers and brokers.

Closing Joint Sessions

  • Is It Hot Enuff For Ya? A Look at Climate Change and Its Impact on the Insurance Community
    A panel explored the science behind climate change and how it will affect insurance risks and discussed the innovative solutions to emerging business risks and the debate about insurer disclosure.
  • Suitability – A Conundrum for Enforcement and Compliance
    A discussion of the regulatory issues surrounding suitability determinations, the NAIC Suitability Model, supervisory agreements, and IMSA’s suitability clearinghouse.
  • NAIC Capitol Hill Update
    Panelists discussed the NAIC’s latest national initiatives, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, National Insurance Act, and more.

CDS Sponsors

IRES would like to thank the following firms for their generous support of the CDS:

  • Eide Bailley
  • Examination Resources
  • RSM McGladrey
  • Sonnenschein
  • INS Ref

Event Details


2:00pm on Sunday, August 10, 2008

6:00pm on Tuesday, August 12, 2008

St. Louis, MO

11:59pm on Saturday, August 1, 2009