CHARLESTON -- Gov. Joe Manchin has appointed Charleston resident Ted Cheatham to serve as Director of the West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Agency.

Cheatham has more than 15 years of executive and management experience in the health care and insurance industries. From 1999 to 2003, he served as President and CEO of Charleston-based Carelink Health Plans. During his tenure at the helm of Carelink, he spearheaded a restructuring of the organization's operations that resulted in 74 percent growth in the net worth of the organization – a subsidiary of Fortune 500 firm Coventry Health Care.

Most recently, he served as a business director and management consultant with Unisys, a worldwide technology services and solutions company. He also has worked with major health insurance providers in Mississippi and California.

"Ted Cheatham is an accomplished executive in the health insurance industry, and I am pleased that he has agreed to oversee our efforts on a state level," Manchin said. "He brings a wealth of experience to this position that is only further enhanced by his strong familiarity with the working structure of PEIA as a past leader of one of the agency's largest provider organizations."

He is a member of West Virginia Business Roundtable and served on Pharmacy Costs committee of Governor Manchin's 2004 Transition Team. He has previously served as a board member of the West Virginia Health Care Authority, West Virginia HMO Organization, and the West Virginia Heart Association. He is a past Vice President of the Inland Empire Association of Health Underwriters.

A U.S. Army veteran, Cheatham is a graduate of the University of Arizona, where he earned bachelor's degrees in finance and personnel management; Troy State University, where he earned a master's degree in business administration; and, the Whittier College School of Law.

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