Optima Health CEO Michael Dudley will retire at the end of the year, the Virginia Beach, Va., health plan announced Friday.
Dudley, who has been with the insurer 21 years, will be succeeded by Dennis Matheis, who has served with national insurer Anthem for the past 13 years, most recently as president of Anthem's central region and the exchanges.
Matheis also led integration efforts in Anthem's proposed merger with Cigna Corp., which fell through earlier this year. Matheis will become president of Optima Health and senior corporate vice president of Sentara Healthcare, the health system that owns Optima.
Dudley announced his decision to retire internally in November 2016.
"I cannot thank Mike enough for the dedication, passion, enthusiasm and motivation he has given Optima Health over the past 21 years. Mike leaves a legacy to be proud of and leaves Optima Health in a strong position for new leadership to take the helm," said Sentara Healthcare President and CEO Howard Kern. "Dennis' leadership and operating expertise with health plans, his experience in multistate integration efforts and familiarity with a variety of health plan products make him the ideal candidate to build upon what Mike has accomplished."
Matheis will join Optima on Nov. 1 and work with Dudley for two months before Dudley takes on a new yearlong position managing special projects at Sentara.