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Gray Dillard, Kathy Ryan Named EVPs at Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

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Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield announced Monday the hiring of Gray Dillard as executive vice president and chief operating officer and the promotion of Kathy Ryan to executive vice president and chief administrative officer.

Dillard has been chief financial officer and treasurer since 2011.

As COO, he will oversee the overall operations of the company, including group, individual and senior product market segments, marketing, regional offices and human resources, the company said.

Dillard joined Arkansas Blue Cross in March 1994 as senior accountant. He was also a regional executive and vice president of financial services before being named CFO.

A native of North Little Rock, Dillard earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Harding University of Searcy. A CPA, he serves on the boards of USAble Corp., HMO Partners, Medsite Health Management and World Services for the Blind Foundation.

In her new role, Ryan will be responsible for internal operations, information systems and information technology infrastructure. She will continue as chief information officer.

The position of chief administrative officer was previously held by David Bridges, who has retired.

Ryan joined Arkansas Blue Cross in 1982 as a senior programmer for Medicare Part B Systems and was later promoted to director. She became manager of Information Systems for Health Advantage in 1995 and was promoted to director of operations for Health Advantage in 2004.

In 2006, she became vice president of operations. In 2014, she became senior vice president of Enterprise Information Systems and Technology. 

A native of Tallahassee, Florida, Ryan earned her bachelor’s degree in biochemistry at Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina, and is a graduate of America’s Health Insurance Plans Foundation’s Executive Leadership Program. She is also a leadership council advisory member for the Arkansas Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation. 

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