Young Alumni Award

Mary A. Theilen
2019 Heritage Honours Awards | Young Alumni Award Winner

This award recognizes alumni who have demonstrated success early in their career and who have been active in the life of the University of Northern Iowa.

Graduating with a degree in mathematics, Mary A. Theilen, ‘99, began her career at American Family Insurance as an actuarial analyst. After just five years she was named specialty lines director in the actuarial division. She also served as homeowners lines director, risk pricing director and business performance and planning director and is now the company’s personal lines president in Madison, Wisconsin. Personal Lines is American Family’s largest division, and Mary has 4,000 employees under her direction. 

Before her 2017 promotion, she served as the company’s enterprise chief risk officer, previously serving as enterprise risk management vice president. Throughout her career, Mary has worked across the corporation to initiate new risk management approaches and implement new technologies that increase the company’s speed and effectiveness in serving its customers. 

Mary is a fellow of the Casualty Actuarial Society, a Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter, a Chartered Enterprise Risk Analyst and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries. She has a master’s certificate in project management. Mary and her husband, Jason, a ‘99 history/political science graduate of UNI, have four children. Mary was a Presidential Scholar at UNI and was the guest of the Department of Mathematics during UNI’s 2015 Alumni in Residence program.

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Mary A. Theilen