Scott Serota, president and CEO of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, earned $4 million in 2008, according to a newly released tax filing.
Blues' profitable year
2008 revenue hits $411 million, with profits up 28%; Serota earns $4 million
Overall, the not-for-profit trade association representing 39 Blues plans nationwide, had total revenue of $411 million, up almost 11% from $371 million in 2007, according to the filing submitted to the Internal Revenue Service last month.
The Blues association earned $6.8 million on investment income last calendar year, up about 19% from $5.7 million the year prior. The group ended the year with $23 million in profits, up almost 28% from $18 million in 2007. The Blues association’s investment success contrasts with the losses taken by other healthcare associations (Dec. 7, p. 14).
The Chicago-based association earned revenue on several key programs, including BlueCard, a clearinghouse service offered when a Blues plan member receives medical care in another member plan’s service area. Some 71% of Fortune 500 companies participate in the program, and Blues plans saved more than $56 billion in provider discounts through BlueCard in 2008, according to the association. The association took in $114.8 million in revenue on the BlueCard program over $107.2 million in expenses, according to the IRS filing.
The association received $72 million in member dues.
“When talking about revenue, I would say that the Blues association is not a typical trade group,” said Jeff Smokler, spokesman for the association. “We are an owner of a brand.”
The newly redesigned IRS filing, the Form 990, for the first time in 2008 included more comprehensive information on governance and executive pay. Serota was the group’s highest paid executive in 2008, earning a base salary of $876,063, plus $1.5 million in bonus and incentives, $295,226 in other compensation, $1.3 million in deferred compensation and $40,519 in nontaxable benefits.
Mary Nell Lehnhard, senior vice president of policy and representation, was the second-highest-earning executive, with $1.5 million in total compensation for 2008. Alissa Fox, previously vice president of legislation and regulatory
policy earned $523,032 last year, according to the filing. Fox is now senior vice president of the Blues policy and representation office.
The association spent $15 million on lobbying and political expenditures. Contributions to political groups totaled $60,000. The Democratic Governors Association and the Republican Governors Association each received $25,000 and the Republican Leadership Council got $10,000.
Other spending included $5.7 million on conferences and $27.3 million on information technology, according to the Form 990 filing.
Send us a letter
Have an opinion about this story? Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor, and we may publish it in print.