Mike Kreidler is Washington’s eighth insurance commissioner. A former member of Congress, he was first elected as insurance commissioner in 2000. He was re-elected to a sixth term in 2020.
A doctor of optometry with a master's degree in public health from UCLA, Kreidler practiced at the former Group Health Cooperative in Olympia for 20 years. He served 16 years in the Washington State Legislature. In addition, he was the regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and a member of the Northwest Power Planning Council.
He retired as a lieutenant colonel from the Army Reserves with 20 years of service.
Kreidler is a staunch advocate for consumer protection and known as a fair and balanced regulator. He earned the "Excellence in Consumer Advocacy Award" from consumer advisors to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
From the boardroom of his local school district to the state Legislature and halls of Congress, Kreidler has represented Washingtonians for nearly 50 years.
A longtime advocate for state and federal health care reform
Throughout his career, Commissioner Kreidler has been passionate about achieving health care coverage for all Washingtonians and led the efforts to implement the Affordable Care Act in our state.
He worked to pass the strongest law in the country against the practice of surprise medical billing, supported efforts to protect reproductive rights and access to health insurance coverage for transgender people. Early in his term, he rejected a bid by one of the state's largest nonprofit health insurers, Premera Blue Cross, to become a for-profit company.
A national and international voice on climate change
Since 2007, Commissioner Kreidler has chaired the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' Climate Risk and Resilience Work Group. He led a successful push for insurers to disclose if and how they are preparing for the potential risks associated with climate change.
In 2015, Kreidler joined the Paris Pledge for Action (www.parispledgeforaction.org) to limit global temperature rise to less than 2 degrees Celsius; and his office became a supporting institution for the UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Initiative (www.unepfi.org), the largest collaboration between the United Nations and the insurance industry, backing the aims of the Paris Agreement. In 2016, Commissioner Kreidler joined the UNEP’s Sustainable Insurance Forum (SIF), a network of insurance supervisors and regulators working together to strengthen their response to relevant sustainability challenges.
In June 2020, Insurance ERM named Commissioner Kreidler an insurance industry leader on climate change (insuranceerm.com).
- Raising public awareness of the massive surpluses accumulated by some nonprofit health insurers.
- Successfully advocating for changes in state law that allow public access to health insurance rate requests.
- Cutting excessive auto- and homeowner-insurance rates by more than $370 million since 2001, as well as saving individuals and small businesses more than $208 million in health insurance premiums since 2015.
- Creating a special unit to investigate criminal insurance fraud.
- Helping consumers recover $16 million in denied and delayed insurance payments in 2018.
- Making Washington the first state in the nation to set access standards for insurers’ medical provider networks.
- Restoring troubled insurers to financial solvency.
- Regaining national accreditation for the office.
- Successfully fighting attempts by big out-of-state insurance companies to strip consumers of their legal protections.