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Greeley lawmaker named insurance commissioner

By Charles Ashby

Gov. John Hickenlooper named Rep. Jim Riesberg, D-Greeley, as the state's new commission of insurance effective on Friday.

Riesberg, who will resign his House seat on Thursday, replaces John Postolowski, who was appointed to the post on a interim basis in December. He will return to his role as deputy commissioner, a post he has held since 2004.

Riesberg was first elected to the Colorado House in 2004 to represent House District 50, which includes the cities of Greeley and Evans. He is the ranking member of the House Health and Environment Committee and a member of the House Appropriations Committee. He is serving his fourth term in the House and would has faced term limits. The district's Democratic Party central committee will meet in the next few weeks to name a replacement.

"It's truly an honor to be selected by Governor Hickenlooper to oversee the Division of Insurance for the state and to be recognized for my decades of experience in this field," Riesberg said in a statement. "There's important work to be done, including implementing the Health Benefit Exchange. This position will require striking a balance between the needs of the insurance industry with the needs of consumers, and I'm confident this can be accomplished."

Riesberg is a Colorado native who has lived in Greeley for 30 years. He worked for 24 years at various insurance and human resource companies, including Allstate Insurance Co. and Hearth Company Real Estate and Insurance. He also spent 16 years in leadership roles with nonprofit organizations specializing in aging, hunger and housing issues. He also taught junior high school for five years.

Riesberg earned a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in gerontology, both from the University of Northern Colorado. He completed the Graduate Realtor’s Institute and holds numerous certificates and awards for courses in insurance, real estate, sales training and personal development.

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