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Blues Name Valley City Native as New CEO
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota has hired a new president and chief executive officer after the company's previous chief was canned following nearly $80 million in financial losses.

The company announced Monday that Chief Operating Officer Tim Huckle will serve as president and CEO. Huckle had been serving as the interim chief since May, when Paul von Ebers was fired.

Board chair Ann McConn says in a statement that the 13-member board unanimously voted to hire Huckle, who has logged 29 years with the state's dominate insurer.

Huckle also served as interim CEO and president in 2009 after former CEO Mike Unhjem was fired amid criticism over an expensive Caribbean retreat for the insurer's employees.

The company's website says that Huckle, a native of Valley City, North Dakota, graduated from the University of North Dakota with a Business Administration degree. He began his career at BCBSND as a work management specialist in the claims processing and service area, advancing to the team leader position in the Medicare Part B Claims and Blue Shield Claims departments, then on to the management of the Claims division. Huckle learned all aspects of BCBSND operations through successive experience as assistant vice president of Planning and Development and as vice president of Development and Business Strategies, where he lead the collaborative process of developing the company’s three-year strategic plan. The additional responsibilities of human resources and training were later added to that division.