Alaska Insurance Division director quits position for job with ministry

Tegan Hanlon

The director of the Alaska Division of Insurance, who led the state through the initial rollout of the Affordable Care Act, resigned Monday to take a position with a ministry.

Bret Kolb, appointed in May 2012, said he's leaving the government and insurance industry altogether to work as the director of business development for Palmer-based Victory Ministries of Alaska. His last day with the Insurance Division will be Dec. 19, according to his resignation letter.

Kolb, who lives in Wasilla, said the new position will allow him to work from home and lose the commute to Anchorage.

"It was an opportunity to do something that was good for my family," Kolb said.

He said his resignation is not connected to the health insurance marketplace or Gov. Sean Parnell's recent announcement to not to expand Medicaid in the state.

As director, Kolb reviewed providers' rates and form filings under the health insurance marketplace and coordinated with a number of state and federal agencies on the health care law, according to Dru Fenster, spokeswoman with the Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.

Fenster said she assumes the department will go out and recruit someone to fill Kolb's position, but didn't have any additional details or timeline on Wednesday.

"With handling all of the recent health insurance changes, we've kind of been concentrating on that," she said.

Brian Headdings, executive director of Victory , said Kolb will start in January with the ministry, which operates Christian camps in Sutton and Fairbanks and a conference center. Kolb previously worked with Victory as chief financial officer.

Reach Tegan Hanlon at or 257-4589.