Providence, R.I. – Governor Lincoln D. Chafee announced today that Christopher F. Koller, the former Chief Executive Officer of Neighborhood Health Plan, is his choice to continue to serve as Rhode Island’s Health Insurance Commissioner. Koller became the state’s first Health Insurance Commissioner – a position created legislatively in 2004 – in 2005.
“Chris is a tremendously qualified, capable, and knowledgeable individual with a long and successful career in the healthcare industry,” Chafee said. “He has brought that experience to his work as Health Insurance Commissioner, a role where he has made significant strides. He will be key in assisting myself and Lieutenant Governor Roberts in making Rhode Island a national leader in terms of preparing for and implementing federal health care reform.”
Prior to his appointment as Health Insurance Commissioner, Koller was the Chief Executive Officer of Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island (NHPRI), a 73,000 member HMO founded in 1994 by Rhode Island’s Community Health Centers that primarily serves enrollees in RIte Care, the State’s managed care program for low and moderate-income families. Under Koller’s leadership, NHPRI was the first community health center-affiliated health plan to attain an “Excellent” rating from the National Committee for Quality Assurance and it achieved national recognition for its unique partnerships with community health centers, the state, and private institutions in the service of medically underserved populations.
Before joining Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island in 1996, Koller was Medical Advisor and Consultant for The HMO Group of New Brunswick, NJ, a national consortium of 20 non-profit and group model HMOs, from 1989 to 1996. During that time, he also worked as a manager and administrator for Health Care Plan, Inc. of Buffalo, NY.
Koller is former chair of RI’s HMO Association and the founding Chair of the Association for Community Affiliated Plans, a national membership association of 17 Medicaid Managed health plans, which comprises approximately one million enrollees. In 2002, he chaired the Care Advisory Committee for the transition team of Governor-elect Carcieri. He is an Adjunct Professor in the Program of Public Health at Brown Medical School.
Koller is a summa cum laude graduate of Dartmouth College, and holds a Master’s degree in Religion with a Social Ethics concentration from Yale Divinity School and a Master’s degree in Public and Private Management from the Yale School of Management.