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Aetna Leadership

Meet the Aetna executives who are helping to transform health care locally, nationally and around the globe

Executive biographies

Karen S. Lynch

Karen S. Lynch

Executive Vice President, CVS Health and President, Aetna Business Unit

Karen S. Lynch is Executive Vice President, CVS Health and President of the Aetna Business Unit. She is responsible for driving the CVS Health strategy to deliver consumer-focused, high-value healthcare to the nearly 45 million people that the Aetna Business Unit serves.

Ms. Lynch has nearly three decades of experience in the health care industry. Prior to joining CVS Health, she served as President of Aetna overseeing the company’s Government and Commercial businesses. She also held executive positions at Magellan Health Services and Cigna. Ms. Lynch began her career with Ernst & Young as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

For the last three years (2016 – 2018), Ms. Lynch was named to Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business for her leadership and contributions to improving the health care system. She was also recognized by Modern Healthcare as one of the 2017 Top 25 Women in Healthcare, highlighting her role in transforming health care delivery across the country. 

Ms. Lynch serves as a director of U.S. Bancorp, a trustee of The Bushnell Performing Arts Center, and is a member of the Global 50 and the Boston College Women’s Council. She is a board member of the Aetna Foundation and an advisory board member of IBM Watson Health. She is a past advisory board member of both NEADS/Dogs for Deaf and Disabled Americans and the Boston office of Ernst & Young. Ms. Lynch served for three consecutive years as Honorary Chair of the Komen Connecticut Race for the Cure. 

Ms. Lynch has been recognized for her leadership by numerous organizations and publications, including the National Association for Specialty Health Organizations, Business Insurance, the Stevie® Awards for Women in Business, and Insurance Networking News. She has also co-chaired the Health Care and Pharmaceutical Task Force for the Wall Street Journal Women in the Economy Conference. 

Ms. Lynch earned her bachelor's degree in accounting from Boston College and an MBA from Boston University. In 2015, she was presented with an honorary doctorate degree of humane letters from Becker College in Worcester, MA. 

To learn more about Ms. Lynch, follow her on Twitter @KarenLynchAetna and on LinkedIn.

Richard di Benedetto

Richard di Benedetto

Executive Vice President
Aetna International

Richard di Benedetto was appointed as President, Aetna International, in 2013.  He continues to serve in this role following the completion of CVS Health’s acquisition of Aetna and is a member of the CVS Health Executive Leadership Team. 

Aetna International is one of the world’s largest health benefits businesses, serving nearly 900,000 members living and working in nearly every country in the world.  Under Mr. di Benedetto’s leadership, Aetna International’s goal is to become the global leader in delivering world-class health care and wellness solutions, making quality health care more accessible and empowering people to live healthier lives.

In 2014, Mr. di Benedetto successfully led the acquisition and subsequent integration of InterGlobal, which significantly expanded Aetna’s global reach, and brought valuable service expertise to the business.  Mr. di Benedetto has also been instrumental in collaborating with health care systems, government entities, and plan sponsors worldwide to design locally appropriate solutions and develop new products to improve health, increase quality, and drive cost effectiveness.  Since 2015, Aetna International has significantly expanded its presence in the Middle East and South East Asia, most recently with the acquisition of Bupa Thailand.

Prior to joining Aetna International, Mr. di Benedetto spent three years as Chief Executive Officer at Euromedic International, one of the largest private equity owned European providers of diagnostic services, laboratories, and cancer treatments.  In this role he successfully oversaw the transformation of the company, with a focus on organic growth and revenue diversification in priority countries.

Mr. di Benedetto previously spent 15 years with GE Healthcare in a number of senior leadership roles, including as President and Chief Executive Officer of their Eastern and Africa Growth Markets.  Based in Istanbul, he was responsible for expanding the footprint of GE Healthcare in Africa and the Middle East, and for developing regionalized services and product offerings.

In July 2018, Mr. di Benedetto was appointed as a director and non-executive chairman to SleepCogni, a UK-based company that is developing a patented medical device providing a combined diagnostic and treatment system capable of helping clinicians identify and treat sleep disorders.

Mr. di Benedetto holds a master’s degree in economics from the Institut d’Etudes Politiques in Paris and began his career with the Econocom Group SA based in France and Germany.

Shawn M. Guertin

Rick M. Jelinek

Executive Vice President, Integration
CVS Health

Rick Jelinek, Executive Vice President, CVS Health. Mr. Jelinek is responsible for leading the integration efforts related to the CVS Health and Aetna transaction. His primary focus is working across the newly created enterprise to achieve deal goals, helping to drive profitable growth and participating in transforming the health care experience for consumers. Previously, Mr. Jelinek was Executive Vice President, Enterprise Strategy at Aetna where he was responsible for leading critical enterprise and customer and business initiatives that advanced Aetna’s strategy. Mr. Jelinek was also the Head of Markets at Aetna, where he connected all product and health service strategies at the local market level and oversaw the company’s national network organization. Mr. Jelinek is a member of the Executive Leadership Team, the senior governing body of the company.

Mr. Jelinek has broad healthcare experience, serving in senior roles with payors and providers. He even spent time at Advent International on the private equity side of the industry. Mr. Jelinek was at United Health for 19 years, serving in a variety of executive leadership roles including CEO of OptumHealth.

Mr. Jelinek is a member of YPO and a founding advisory board member for the Griffith Leadership Center at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. He currently is a member of the board of directors of HealthEdge and previously served on the board of directors of Redbrick Health, Sutter Health, the Minnesota Children’s Museum and Cotiviti.

Mr. Jelinek holds a master’s degree in health services administration and an MBA from the University of Michigan, as well as a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Southern California.

Meg McCarthy

Meg McCarthy

Executive Vice President
CVS Health

Meg McCarthy is serving as Executive Vice President of CVS Health, supporting the technology organization through a period of transition following the completion of CVS Health’s acquisition of Aetna.

Previously, Ms. McCarthy served as Executive Vice President of Technology and Operations for Aetna. There, she managed the IT portfolio and oversaw service operations, information technology, global security, procurement, travel, and real estate services. She also was a member of Aetna’s Executive Leadership Team, the company’s senior governing body, and reported to Aetna's Chairman and CEO.

In her prior role at Aetna, Ms. Meg McCarthy is Executive Vice President, Operations and Technology. She is responsible for clinical innovation, technology and service operations. Meg also has responsibility for process and performance improvement, procurement and real estate services for Aetna, Inc.

McCarthy served as Chief Information Officer and Vice President and Head of Business Solutions Delivery, where she was responsible for the delivery and production support of information technology and business process improvement initiatives. Prior to joining Aetna in 2003, Ms. McCarthy was Senior Vice President of Information Technology at Cigna and served as Chief Information Officer at Catholic Health Initiatives and Franciscan Health System. She also worked in technology consulting at Andersen Consulting (Accenture) and was a consulting partner at Ernst & Young.

Ms. McCarthy has been recognized as one of Insurance & Technology Magazine's “Elite 8” and Computerworld’s Top 100 leaders. She serves on the board of directors of Brighthouse Financial, Inc., the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), First American Financial Corporation, vArmour and the Providence College Board of Trustees. In addition, Ms. McCarthy represented Aetna on the executive, finance and nominating committees of the Council on Affordable Quality Healthcare (CAQH). She previously served as a member of the World Economic Forum Gender Parity Council.

Ms. McCarthy holds a bachelor's degree from Providence College and a master’s degree in public health, hospital administration, from Yale University. Her military experience includes U.S. Navy Medical Services Corps, Lieutenant at Bethesda Naval Hospital, and U.S. Navy Reserves, Lieutenant Commander.

Fran S. Soistman

Fran S. Soistman

Executive Vice President
Head of Government Services

Fran Soistman is Executive Vice President of the Aetna Business Unit of CVS Health, and President of Government Services. He is responsible for driving growth in the company’s Medicare, Medicaid and Federal Employees Health Benefits Program businesses. These combined businesses accounted for approximately $38 billion, or 55%, of Aetna’s 2018 total revenue. 

Mr. Soistman, who joined Aetna in 2013, has more than 35 years of experience in health insurance and managed care. Prior to joining Aetna, he was Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of Jessamine Healthcare, a firm focused on strategic investment opportunities in the health care industry. Before his tenure at Jessamine, Mr. Soistman held several senior leadership positions at Coventry Health Care, including Executive Vice President for the Individual Consumer and Government Business Division. In this role, he was responsible for the company’s individual Medicare Advantage, Medicare Part D, Medicaid and commercial individual products, which served more than 2.5 million members across the United States.

Mr. Soistman received his Bachelor’s Degree from Towson University and is a graduate of the Stanford University Executive Program. He has been honored with the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Healthcare Technology/Services category, the Towson University Distinguished Alumni Award and a Doctor of Humane Letters. 

Mr. Soistman has served on multiple higher education boards throughout the past 25 years, including a 10-year term on the Penn State University Presidential Leadership Board of Directors. Currently, he serves on the Towson University Board of Visitors as Chairman, the University System of Maryland Foundation Board of Directors and the Finca Vigía Foundation Board of Directors. In addition, Mr. Soistman represents Aetna on the Healthcare Leadership Council serving on the Executive Committee, the Healthcare Transformation Task Force serving as Board Chairman, and the Harvard Medical School Department of Health Care Policy Scientific Advisory Board.

To learn more about Mr. Soistman, follow him on Twitter @FranSoistman and on LinkedIn.


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