Christopher C. Booth promoted to Executive Vice President and COO of Excellus BlueCross BlueShield

Christopher C. Booth of Pittsford, N.Y., has been appointed to the position of executive vice president and chief operating officer of Excellus BlueCross BlueShield and its parent company.

Booth joined the company in 2004 as chief administrative officer and general counsel. He was promoted to executive vice president, Commercial Markets and Health Care Affairs, in January 2009. He has more than two decades of experience working with the corporation, having worked for Hinman Straub PC, the corporation’s outside legal counsel in Albany, N.Y.

“Like the rest of the upstate New York economy, our company has faced challenging times the past couple of years, and Chris has been a steady, pragmatic voice guiding the leadership decisions that are putting us back on the road to success,” said David H. Klein, president and chief executive officer.

“Chris led our health plan’s stabilization efforts that achieved more than $70 million in administrative cost reductions. His approach was to maximize savings with minimal layoffs and benefit reductions, and to make targeted marketing decisions to put our health plan in a better competitive position. Those efforts are paying off as we have returned to growth in recent months.”

Booth has been absorbing more and more responsibilities on top of what he had with the addition of Sales and Marketing and Health Care and Network Management, along with the responsibility of making improvements in operations, customer service and information technology. The health plan’s Medicare unit also reports to Booth.

“Those who work in close proximity to Chris often hear him emphasize the importance of empowering staff to suggest better ways of doing things,” Klein said. “It’s common for him to stress how critical it is for staff to make management aware of problems early on, when they can be addressed more effectively and efficiently.”

Booth, 48, resides in Pittsford with his wife Gail and their three daughters. He serves on the board of directors for the Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency, United Way and Flower City Habitat for Humanity. He is also a trustee of WXXI-TV and Radio and serves on the State Hospital Review and Planning Council.