2018 Outstanding CPA in Government Awards

As the Director of Financial Regulation at the Connecticut Insurance Department, Kathy Belfi, CPA, is responsible for the oversight of the financial solvency of some of the most complex Property and Casualty, Life and Health insurers in the world.

Kathy’s division, the largest of the Insurance Department, also reviews and approves the formation and licensing of domestic insurers and certificates of authority for foreign insurers who want to do business in Connecticut. She leads a staff of CPAs, financial analysts, examiners both in-house and field, legal and other support professionals, whose work is a critical part of the Department’s consumer protection mission.

A 25-year veteran of the Department, Kathy has helped guide the division through a changing regulatory environment that now goes beyond a thorough review of the balance sheet. Group supervision, enterprise risk management, principle-based reserving are among the approaches state insurance regulators take when assessing the solvency of carriers, particularly large corporations with international reach.

The 2008 recession gave rise to many of the regulatory changes that state insurance departments have adopted. Connecticut’s Holding Company law, enacted in 2013, gives the Insurance Commissioner enhanced powers to regulate large Internationally Active Insurance Groups (IAIGs) through use of supervisory colleges. It gave the Insurance Department the ability to demand data from any entity that is part of the insurance holding company, no matter where that entity is located or incorporated, and whether the business is insurance or non-insurance. Shortly after the law was enacted, Kathy led her team to convene five supervisory colleges in a relatively short period of time – an unprecedented feat at the time. Kathy has often told the staff that coordinating a supervisory college is like “planning a wedding.” She oversees the complexities of lining up presentations, hotel bookings, catering, conversations with high level company executives across any number of times zones, not to mention language differences.

Along with being a chair of several working groups of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), Kathy is an active participant in over 20 NAIC working groups. Kathy has also established herself as a leader in six supervisory/US regional colleges and participates in numerous colleges.

Kathy was honored to be a co-recipient of the NAIC’s 2013 Robert Dineen Award.  This prestigious award was given to Kathy for her outstanding national leadership on critical group supervision and supervisory college issues. 

Kathy has also overseen the implementation of many regulatory efficiencies in the Financial Regulation Division. Her team is now using the audit industry tool called “TeamMate,” a software platform that allows for easy sharing of information within the Department. It has improved controls and drastically cut the amount of time spent filing, retrieving and storing documents. In addition, companies can now file electronically for most requests.

She has served in her current capacity for the past 14 years and prior to that was responsible for company licensing and financial analysis. She has also worked as a CPA for several years with a concentration in real estate and taxation. Kathy received her bachelor’s of science degree in accounting from Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, CT.

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