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UP CLOSE: Tom Phelan


UP CLOSE: Tom Phelan

CONCURRENT POSITION: President and CEO of the Injured Workers Insurance Fund

LOOKING FORWARD TO: It's a great opportunity to network with other people, share ideas (and) collaborate on issues that affect peoples' lives.

GOALS FOR NEW POSITION: The biggest thing is to keep all the members actively engaged and to keep the members up to date on issues that affect all of us.

CHALLENGES FACING INDUSTRY: One of the biggest issues is use of opiate drugs in the use of workers compensation claims. These people get addicted to these drugs. Prescription drugs are causing more deaths than things like cocaine and heroin. Our role is different than the private sector. We are really concerned about the safety of people.

INDUSTRY OUTLOOK: A lot of people are developing analytics that help identify claimant outcomes and how to help a claimant come back to work, and where to focus resources. The big wave coming forward is going to be in insurance and technology. We are going to be embracing more technology.

OUTSIDE THE INDUSTRY, A DREAM JOB: Working at Walt Disney World. When I was a kid I wanted to own an amusement park.

HOBBIES: I like to exercise. I love to travel. I love things that involve real estate, whether it involves building something, buying something or renting something.

CAN'T-MISS TELEVISION SHOW: “Modern Family.” It takes on the spin that it's not traditional family. It's a modern family. It has a lot of humor to it, and it has a lot of love in it. At the end of the day, you are all in it together.

FAVORITE MEAL: Anything at McDonald's is a good meal.

ON A SATURDAY AFTERNOON: Probably something in the yard or fixing something in the house. I also like to spend time with my family.