While his honors, professional memberships, publications, and presentations are extensive, Lars Powell, Whitbeck-Beyer Chair of Insurance and Financial Services and associate professor in economics and finance, is a university standout for his national service to the insurance industry.
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“The public service he provides at the national and state levels is exemplary,” said his department chair, Dr. Andy Terry. “At the national level, Dr. Powell has earned several service accolades in the last five years.”
Last year he received a service award from the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies.
“His selection was not surprising given his outstanding work on behalf of our association and its 1,400 member companies,” said Dr. Robert Detlefsen, vice president of public policy for the organization. “During the past several years, Dr. Powell has probably done more than any insurance scholar in the United States to inform the public policy debate surrounding critical issues pertaining to the business and regulation of property-casualty insurance.”
He testified in 2010 about “Prohibiting Price Fixing and Other Anticompetitive Conduct in the Health Insurance Industry” before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee and in 2008 about credit-based insurance scoring before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee.
Additionally, Powell is a SAFETY Act application economic reviewer for the Department of Homeland Security, via the Institute for Defense Analysis. In 2011, he organized the annual seminar of the Risk Theory Society, an international research group, and hosted it at UALR. He’s also editor of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ Journal of Insurance Regulation.
On the state level, Powell serves on the Arkansas Association of Health Underwriters board as legislative chairman; Arkansas Insurance Commissioner’s Legislative Task Force, which convenes to discuss insurance-related bills; and Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers Education Foundation Board. He frequently provides continuing education lectures to insurance agents on a volunteer basis.
Powell is serving in his ninth year at UALR. He earned a B.B.A. degree in finance and insurance from the University of South Carolina in 1996 and a Ph.D. in risk management and insurance with a minor concentration in finance from the University of Georgia in 2002.