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Alumni Impact - Krista Hoglund

Posted: March 25th, 2024

Krista Hoglund

Krista Hoglund

UW MBA Consortium graduation: December 2023

Occupation: Chief Executive Officer for Security Health Plan

UW MBA Consortium program alumna dedicates career to affordable health care access

Growing up in rural Wisconsin, Krista Hoglund saw firsthand the challenges and barriers people living in rural areas face when it comes to obtaining high-quality health care.

“One summer, I worked for the county as an intern and talked to a worker about why he took a job with the county,” Hoglund says. “He explained that when his first child was born, he was working for a company that didn’t offer health insurance. He couldn’t afford the health care needs that come with having children. He needed a job that included health insurance.”

That conversation and experience made Hoglund aware that people make career decisions based on health care and health insurance needs and sparked a lifelong personal and professional passion to make affordable medical care a priority.

Now the CEO of Security Health Plan, Hoglund built her career through progressively advancing roles within the company's executive leadership, actuarial and business intelligence areas.

Security Health Plan of Wisconsin Inc., is a not-for-profit health plan sponsored by Marshfield Clinic Health System. It now is the fourth-largest regional health plan in Wisconsin based on revenue and the fifth-largest in enrollment, with 225,000 members.

Hoglund has established a record as a health care executive who builds high-functioning leadership teams and corporate strategies that work.

Some of her proudest accomplishments have been cost reduction and revenue improvement.

“I am highly focused on reducing the total cost of care for Security Health Plan customers and across the health insurance and health care industries,” Hoglund says.

As chief actuary and financial officer, she led cost-reduction efforts that achieved more than $80 million in year-over-year savings for Marshfield Clinic Health System and Security Health Plan. She also has helped shape policy, planning and analysis guiding the health plan’s decisions affecting its financial performance.

Hoglund completed a leadership training program within her company and as part of that program, had a performance assessment done. When she received the feedback, the report focused on her tremendous potential and suggested that she consider an MBA so that future growth opportunities would be available to her.

She chose the UW MBA Consortium because it was a highly rated program that offered a quality education along with the flexibility to manage her career and family at the same time.

Hoglund says it wasn’t always easy.

“It was challenging to juggle a full-time executive position, a husband and two active and involved teenagers, along with the classwork,” Hoglund says.

“There was at least one moment during every class where I questioned what I was doing and why. But then I would read an article or engage with a classmate on a discussion question and I would learn something to make me a better person or better leader. That gave me the energy to get through another week,” Hoglund says.

She has been able to take the material she learned in the program and translate it into professional development.

“I have been able to immediately apply many things I learned from my MBA coursework to my professional environment,” Hoglund says. “I was able to apply leadership best practices as I studied them. I could see how what I was learning played out in a real-world setting, which solidified the learning for me. It helped me make adjustments to what we were doing at work.”

Hoglund’s work has gained recognition within her industry and nationwide. She recently received the prestigious honor of serving as a witness at a U.S. Senate Finance Committee hearing on marketing in the Medicare Advantage sector.

“I gathered data from sources within my company to share with the U.S. Senate Finance Committee, boldly speaking out against our competitors’ marketing practices in a very public way,” Hoglund says. “Following that hearing, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services included excerpts of my testimony in new rules intended to reign in unethical marketing practices and broker compensation.”

She also recently was named a Titan 100 honoree. The Titan 100 is a national organization that recognizes the top 100 CEOs and C-level executives within a specific region.

“To be included in this group of incredibly focused, passionate and hardworking visionaries who are using their leadership talents to improve the lives of others and influence their respective industries was humbling,” Hoglund says.

She says she would absolutely recommend the UW MBA Consortium to colleagues and friends and, in fact, already has done so.

“I learned so much and the program gave me the flexibility to complete it around my busy work and home life,” Hoglund says.

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