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PayFlex® Leadership

PayFlex Leadership

Meet the PayFlex executives.

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Erin Hatzikostas

President, PayFlex, an Aetna Company

Erin Hatzikostas is the President of PayFlex and is responsible for all aspects of the organization, including its strategy, operations, marketing, sales and client service. Erin is driven by her passion and energy for the PayFlex business – its customers, members and employees. Her leadership philosophy is one that is centered on creating a focused but fun environment, where employees feel enabled to push the boundaries of “normal”, as they focus on evolving PayFlex’s services to better meet its customers’ needs.

Prior to joining PayFlex in 2012, Erin held a number of leadership positions in her 20 years at Aetna. She began her career in Aetna’s Actuarial Program and went on to work in areas such as Underwriting, Product Development, Relationship Management, Project Management, Global Strategy and Network.

Most notably prior to her time at PayFlex, Erin served as the head of Strategy & Business Development for Aetna International where she was responsible for growing Aetna’s global footprint. She also led Aetna’s National Accounts Network Strategy & Customer Solutions team where her team focused on serving the unique, network-related needs of numerous Fortune 500 companies.

Erin holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Statistics from Western Michigan University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Connecticut. She currently serves as a Board member of the American Bankers Association’s HSA Council.

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Susan Bambara

Director, Consumer Insights & Strategic Marketing

As the leader of PayFlex’s Consumer Insights & Strategic Marketing team, Susan’s vision is for PayFlex to become the “Om” in a world of choices, resounding with every interaction to create a positive, memorable experience to anyone who touches PayFlex.

Susan has been with PayFlex since 2007. She began her career at Aetna in Marketing and then took a position in Sales in Boston MA. Upon relocating back to Connecticut, Susan joined Mercer Health & Benefits as a Client Consultant where she was responsible for business development, local marketing and managing a book of business.

Her experience in Sales and Consulting combined with an education and passion for Marketing led her to a unique opportunity with PayFlex. Susan was able to build a Marketing team from the ground up, cultivate the PayFlex brand into a well-known industry name and shape the member’s experience through a myriad of marketing initiatives beyond the written word.

Susan has a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Marketing from Bryant University in Rhode Island and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Bentley College in Waltham Massachusetts, with a concentration in Marketing.

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Bill Blount

Head of Technology Delivery and Operations

Bill joined PayFlex in May 2012 and is responsible for strategic leadership of technology delivery and operations. He has more than 20 years of experience in software development, technology operations, consulting and data warehousing.

Prior to joining PayFlex, Bill built and managed highly scalable and redundant solutions in the online retail industry in roles as Vice President of Information Technology at FTD, and Vice President of IT Operations at Earlier in his career, he held positions in application development and data management, and consulted to clients such as the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the Transportation Security Administration and Oracle Corporation. Bill holds a B.S. in Management Information Systems from the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse.

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Cheryl Cwiertniewicz

Head of Financial Operations

Cheryl brings 19 years of financial experience and P&L leadership to the team and serves as CFS Head of Financial Operations.

Previously at Aetna, Cheryl served as Director of Capital Management where she was responsible for managing Aetna's corporate cash flow and banking relationships. She also served as Head of Pet Insurance where she led the exit of the product line in all 50 states. In addition, Cheryl has served as Network Accesses Businesses & Strategic Initiatives Managing Director of Strategic Planning as well as led outsourcing relationships with Aetna's offshore partner EXL.

Cheryl holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Bryant University and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Connecticut.

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Domenic Ficco

Director of Finance

Domenic Ficco is the Senior Director of Finance for PayFlex. Domenic joined PayFlex in 2006 and is responsible for financial analysis and reporting, budgeting, and forecasting. He also provides financial guidance and support for M&A activity, strategic planning, executive reporting and performance measurement.

His 10 years of finance experience includes serving as PayFlex Controller and working for a private investor, providing financial guidance for investments in early stage technology companies. He also led development and execution of business plans for each of the new start-up businesses. Domenic received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska.

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Gina Gerber

Head of Operations & Program Management & Product Delivery

Gina heads Operations & Program Management and Product Delivery teams. She provides overall direction and guidance to the operational activities of the organization with the objective of maximizing growth and profitability as well as day-to-day leadership and management to all company operations functions. She also works closely with product team and vendors to drive development of operational processes and procedures for each new product upgrade and addition, including project management, software pipeline prioritization and business analysis at PayFlex. Her program management team’s focus is on planning and prioritization to ensure that all needs are understood, expectations are communicated and solutions are delivered.

Gina originally joined PayFlex in 2007 and recently returned to her current position. Prior to her re-joining PayFlex in current role, Gina managed a small local Flexible Administration firm. Gina has over 20 years of industry experience in all aspects of healthcare and tax-advantaged financial accounts. She held leadership positions in many areas of the business including Operations, Product Development and IT. She has led the efforts to migrate customer data and sunset legacy platforms.

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Brendan Kerrigan

Head of National Accounts Sales & Service

Brendan joined PayFlex in August of 2009 and is responsible for revenue growth and client retention for the company.

Prior to joining PayFlex, Brendan was Vice President of Health Plan and Payor Markets at Quest Diagnostics, Inc. in Madison, NJ. Before joining Quest, he spent 10 years at United Health Group/Oxford Health Plans, as Vice President of Sales for the New England market. Earlier in his career, he was Vice President of Sales for Preferred HealthCare, a company based in Wilton, CT that provided specialty benefits and management services. Brendan received his Bachelor of Science in Health Care Administration from Stonehill College in North Easton, MA, and his MBA from the University of Connecticut.

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Jenn Plasse-Puzey

Director of Strategy & Product Development

Jenn Plasse-Puzey is responsible for leading PayFlex’s strategy and product development efforts. Together with her colleagues she will help the organization become the leader in empowering consumers to maximize their financial health.

Jenn has been with PayFlex since 2013. She began her career with Aetna in 2005 and served in various roles with responsibilities ranging from strategic planning and product development to vendor management and business development.

Jenn has a passion for innovation. This combined with her experience in leading large scale strategic initiatives led her to a unique opportunity with PayFlex. Upon her arrival, Jenn was instrumental in launching a new digital payment solution, Money² for Health. Since then, she has helped the organization refresh its strategy and evaluate new growth opportunities for the future.

Jenn has a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Strategic Marketing from Niagara University.

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Jeff Protextor, J.D.

Head of Regulatory Affairs and Corporate Compliance

Jeff Protextor, J.D., is the Head of Regulatory Affairs and Corporate Compliance, the Chief Compliance Officer and Privacy Officer for PayFlex. Jeff joined PayFlex in August 2010 and is responsible for the oversight and management of the PayFlex compliance program, which involves ensuring compliance with all applicable laws and regulatory requirements including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Code and Regulations, Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and the USA PATRIOT Act, Title III – International Money Laundering Abatement and Financial Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001.

As the AML Officer, Jeff is responsible for PayFlex’s Anti-Money Laundering Program and the fraud prevention program. In addition to regulatory compliance, he also oversees the PayFlex client contract management process to ensure compliance with applicable legal and company requirements and leads the PayFlex policy governance program.

Prior to joining PayFlex, Jeff managed group health plan compliance for Coventry Health Care and for Mutual of Omaha and served as the HIPAA privacy officer for Coventry Health Care of Nebraska. Jeff has over 15 years of regulatory and legal compliance experience, specializing in the areas of employee benefits, health insurance and tax-advantaged accounts.

Jeff holds a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Political Science with a concentration on Public Administration from the University of Nebraska and received his Juris Doctorate from Creighton University, School of Law.

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Michael Wolfe

Head of Customer Service and Claim Operations

Michael joined PayFlex in February of 2013 and is responsible for Customer Service and Claim Operations for the company.

Prior to joining PayFlex, Michael has held a number of positions of increasing responsibility in his 23 years at Aetna. He began his career on the front lines and moved into different roles that rounded out his experience including Financial Analyst, Plan Sponsor Liaison , Project Manager and Manager of Service Operations often working with some of Aetna’s largest customers. Michael received his Bachelor of Science in Finance and Organizational Behavior from Illinois State University in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois.

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