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Daniel J. Hilferty to receive 2017 William Penn Award

Posted Friday, December 1st, 2017

Programs & Events, Member News, Press Releases

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia (the Chamber) is pleased to announce that Daniel J. Hilferty, president and CEO of Independence Blue Cross, will receive the 2017 William Penn Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a business executive in Greater Philadelphia.

The award, which has been given annually since 1949, recognizes an individual for his/her outstanding contributions toward the betterment of the region, professional accomplishments, and commitment to charity as well as to the community. Mr. Hilferty will be honored on Friday, April 20, 2018, from 7:00 – 11:00 pm during a gala hosted at the Hyatt at the Bellevue.

“Dan Hilferty has dedicated much time and effort to improving our Greater Philadelphia community,” said Rob Wonderling, the Chamber’s President and CEO. “Through his pivotal involvement in the 2015 World Meeting of Families and Papal Visit, his service on multiple boards, and his dedication to improving health care nationally, he has proven himself a leader in multiple capacities, and our community is fortunate to have him here.”

Mr. Hilferty earned his undergraduate degree from St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and then served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps running a community center in Portland, Oregon. He returned to Philadelphia after earning a master’s degree in public administration from American University.

Since Mr. Hilferty became CEO of Independence Blue Cross in 2010, the number of people the company and its affiliates serve has tripled to more than 8.5 million in 24 states, including more than 2.5 million in southeastern Pennsylvania. He has also built business collaborations with world-renowned institutions such as the University of Pennsylvania and partnered with Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans across the country, among others.

Mr. Hilferty has appeared on MSNBC, CNN, and in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and other national media. He is among a select group of nonpartisan health care leaders called upon by government leaders for advice on implementing health care reform.

“Dan Hilferty leads one of Philadelphia’s great institutions,” said Drexel University President John Fry, who chairs the Chamber of Commerce. “He is the right leader at the right time to spearhead the transformational change taking place in healthcare across the country. Dan understands that maintaining quality and access to health care is a key imperative for our times. Fortunately, he is uniquely positioned to craft smart solutions that help the most people in need.” 

Mr. Hilferty is the immediate past chairman of the board of directors of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, and he serves on the executive committee of America’s Health Insurance Plans. In addition, Mr. Hilferty is a member of the boards of directors for BCS Financial, an innovation partner for Blue companies; Aqua America; the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia; the Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia; and FS Investment Corporation III. In 2015, he served as co-chair on the executive leadership cabinet of the World Meeting of Families, which brought Pope Francis to Philadelphia.

“I am truly honored that the Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia has chosen me to be the recipient of this year’s William Penn Award,” said Mr. Hilferty. “It is humbling to join the ranks of the many esteemed Philadelphia leaders who have received this award in the past. Independence has been dedicated to the health and well-being of the communities we serve for 80 years, and like the Chamber, we are committed to the continued growth and success of the Greater Philadelphia region.”

Past William Penn Award recipients include C.R. “Chuck” Pennoni, PE, Founder and Chairman of Pennoni Associates Inc., Diversified Search Founder and Chairman Judith M. von Seldeneck; William P. Hankowsky, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Liberty Property Trust; Joseph Neubauer, Chairman of the Board of ARAMARK; J. William Mills, III, regional president for Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, PNC Bank; David L. Cohen, Executive Vice President, Comcast Corporation; Joseph A. Frick, former Independence Blue Cross President and CEO; Charles Pizzi, former Tasty Baking Company President and CEO; H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest, cable TV pioneer and philanthropist; the late Constantine Papadakis, Ph.D., President, Drexel University; William R. Sasso, Esq., Chairman of Stradley Ronon LLP; Nick DeBenedictis, Chairman and President of Aqua America Inc.; the late Ed Snider, Chairman of Comcast-Spectacor; Judith Rodin, former President, University of Pennsylvania; the late Ralph J. Roberts, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, Comcast Corporation; the late G. Fred DiBona, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer, Independence Blue Cross; Ronald Rubin, President, Pennsylvania Realty Investment Trust; the late Ambassador Walter H. Annenberg; and, the late Rev. Leon Sullivan, Founder of OIC.

For more information or to register, visit: ChamberPHL.com/WPGala18

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