2016 Risk All Star: Chauncey Fagler

An ERM Mantra

Patient, persevering and persistent. Chauncey Fagler, executive director of the Florida College System Risk Management Consortium, is all of those things.

Chauncey Fagler, executive director, Florida College System Risk Management Consortium

Chauncey Fagler, executive director, Florida College System Risk Management Consortium

Whether it’s spending $175,000 to audit property in an initiative that ended up saving consortium members $3 million each year in premium costs, or persuading more of the consortium’s 28 member colleges to participate in a health benefits program, Fagler is always searching for great risk management solutions.

Giving the college system “the best consortium” possible is his mantra, he said.

“Change is always hard. It’s just helping members to see that making changes will be of benefit to them and their colleges,” he said.

His most recent challenge was convincing more colleges to join with the 20 colleges already in the consortium’s health plan. That effort required multiple presentations to HR and business officers of the colleges as well as their boards of trustees.

Fagler is a “trusted adviser,” said Greg Ferguson, corporate account executive, Florida Blue (Blue Cross/Blue Shield).  “He leads them down the path to reason to make decisions for the right reasons,” he said.


Fagler’s achievement in keeping consortium’s health care premium costs substantially lower than the market for more than 10 years was a key selling point.

“We have been very fortunate when you compare the consortium to the marketplace,” Fagler said.

He credits his team, the effectiveness of the consortium’s negotiating abilities, and the “outstanding job” that participating colleges do in communicating to employees about cost-savings activities. Two more colleges agreed to participate, resulting in a 30 percent increase in the number of employees protected by the consortium’s health benefits.

“Change is always hard. It’s just helping members to see that making changes will be of benefit to them and their colleges.” — Chauncey Fagler, executive director, Florida College System Risk Management Consortium

Matthew Snook, a partner at Mercer, said Fagler “has really developed and fleshed out the concept of enterprise risk management at the consortium. … Chauncey has a degree of credibility that has made it easier for his team to take this thing they have created and bring others into it,” he said.

“The more bodies they bring in, the more effective they are.”

Fagler’s leadership and problem-solving abilities were also needed a few years back when RMS modeling software changed the consortium’s 250-year probable maximum loss (PML) from $216 million to $436 million.

“That was a big challenge needing a solution,” he said.

Here’s how he found one:

The consortium hired an outside appraisal firm for $175,000 to identify all underwriting data for the covered buildings, which reduced the PML from $436 million to $244 million. Since then, the consortium has saved, on average, $3 million a year on its property program because of the accurate underwriting data.

“We are always asking, ‘Can we show you the benefits of being in the consortium?’ Once the colleges see the benefit to their bottom line, it makes financial sense to be a part of the consortium.” &


AllStars2016v1oRisk All Stars stand out from their peers by overcoming challenges through exceptional problem solving, creativity, perseverance and passion.

See the complete list of 2016 Risk All Stars.

More from Risk & Insurance

More from Risk & Insurance

4 Companies That Rocked It by Treating Injured Workers as Equals; Not Adversaries

The 2018 Teddy Award winners built their programs around people, not claims, and offer proof that a worker-centric approach is a smarter way to operate.
By: | October 30, 2018 • 3 min read

Across the workers’ compensation industry, the concept of a worker advocacy model has been around for a while, but has only seen notable adoption in recent years.

Even among those not adopting a formal advocacy approach, mindsets are shifting. Formerly claims-centric programs are becoming worker-centric and it’s a win all around: better outcomes; greater productivity; safer, healthier employees and a stronger bottom line.


That’s what you’ll see in this month’s issue of Risk & Insurance® when you read the profiles of the four recipients of the 2018 Theodore Roosevelt Workers’ Compensation and Disability Management Award, sponsored by PMA Companies. These four programs put workers front and center in everything they do.

“We were focused on building up a program with an eye on our partner experience. Cost was at the bottom of the list. Doing a better job by our partners was at the top,” said Steve Legg, director of risk management for Starbucks.

Starbucks put claims reporting in the hands of its partners, an exemplary act of trust. The coffee company also put itself in workers’ shoes to identify and remove points of friction.

That led to a call center run by Starbucks’ TPA and a dedicated telephonic case management team so that partners can speak to a live person without the frustration of ‘phone tag’ and unanswered questions.

“We were focused on building up a program with an eye on our partner experience. Cost was at the bottom of the list. Doing a better job by our partners was at the top.” — Steve Legg, director of risk management, Starbucks

Starbucks also implemented direct deposit for lost-time pay, eliminating stressful wait times for injured partners, and allowing them to focus on healing.

For Starbucks, as for all of the 2018 Teddy Award winners, the approach is netting measurable results. With higher partner satisfaction, it has seen a 50 percent decrease in litigation.

Teddy winner Main Line Health (MLH) adopted worker advocacy in a way that goes far beyond claims.

Employees who identify and report safety hazards can take credit for their actions by sending out a formal “Employee Safety Message” to nearly 11,000 mailboxes across the organization.

“The recognition is pretty cool,” said Steve Besack, system director, claims management and workers’ compensation for the health system.

MLH also takes a non-adversarial approach to workers with repeat injuries, seeing them as a resource for identifying areas of improvement.

“When you look at ‘repeat offenders’ in an unconventional way, they’re a great asset to the program, not a liability,” said Mike Miller, manager, workers’ compensation and employee safety for MLH.

Teddy winner Monmouth County, N.J. utilizes high-tech motion capture technology to reduce the chance of placing new hires in jobs that are likely to hurt them.

Monmouth County also adopted numerous wellness initiatives that help workers manage their weight and improve their wellbeing overall.

“You should see the looks on their faces when their cholesterol is down, they’ve lost weight and their blood sugar is better. We’ve had people lose 30 and 40 pounds,” said William McGuane, the county’s manager of benefits and workers’ compensation.


Do these sound like minor program elements? The math says otherwise: Claims severity has plunged from $5.5 million in 2009 to $1.3 million in 2017.

At the University of Pennsylvania, putting workers first means getting out from behind the desk and finding out what each one of them is tasked with, day in, day out — and looking for ways to make each of those tasks safer.

Regular observations across the sprawling campus have resulted in a phenomenal number of process and equipment changes that seem simple on their own, but in combination have created a substantially safer, healthier campus and improved employee morale.

UPenn’s workers’ comp costs, in the seven-digit figures in 2009, have been virtually cut in half.

Risk & Insurance® is proud to honor the work of these four organizations. We hope their stories inspire other organizations to be true partners with the employees they depend on. &

Michelle Kerr is associate editor of Risk & Insurance. She can be reached at [email protected]