Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon Selects Dawn Bonder as Executive Director

February 4, 2013 -- Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon today announced the selection of Dawn Bonder as Executive Director.

Created under federal healthcare reform, the nonprofit Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon will compete with traditional insurers on the state health insurance exchange, bringing more affordable, accessible, and responsive health insurance to Oregon workers. Bonder will oversee the CO-OP’s implementation, including enrollment this Fall, and benefit delivery in January 2014.

“Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon is on the cutting edge of healthcare delivery -- it’s a privilege to be a part of it,” said Bonder.  “Everyone here is committed to making a difference in the lives of Oregon workers.”

The CO-OP will operate as a social-purpose, mission-driven organization with a double bottom line: providing consumer-oriented coverage while simultaneously achieving financial sustainability.

Bonder previously served as Director of OCHIN - O-HITEC, Oregon’s Regional Extension Center (REC) for Health Information Technology, where she was instrumental in developing and implementing Oregon’s successful REC program.   


She also served as a Senior Policy Advisor to former Oregon Governor Theodore R. Kulongoski focusing on the issues of health and human services. Before that, Bonder was the Policy Director for the Oregon Business Association, working with state agencies, local governments and non-profits on a wide range of public policy issues. 


Bonder received a Juris Doctorate degree from New York University School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Boston University. She lives in Portland, Oregon, and enjoys the chaos of raising three teenage sons.


Background on Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon


Freelancers CO-OPs will offer health insurance coverage within the state insurance exchanges to individuals and small groups effective January 2014, with enrollment beginning in Fall 2013.


By the end of 2014, Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon expects to enroll more 14,500 members. By 2033, that number is expected to climb to nearly 42,000. Oregon is home to more than 220,000 independent workers, according to the most recent US Census.

The Freelancers CO-OP of Oregon is partnering with Providence Health Systems to provide the network of physicians and hospitals throughout Oregon, as well as handle claims administration and medical management.

The CO-OP will be open to all individuals and small groups who are eligible to purchase health insurance on the exchange, with targeted outreach to the vulnerable donut-hole population – people who do not qualify for public health programs, do not receive employer-sponsored benefits, are not currently in the insurance system, and cannot afford the high cost of care on the individual market. Independent workers make up a large part of this population because they fall outside of the traditional employer-sponsored benefit system.

In addition, the CO-OPs will serve individuals who fall below 400% of the Federal Poverty Level ($44,680) and will be eligible for subsidies. However, the CO-OPs’ natural market base will be independent workers who are typically shut out of the traditional health care market.

CO-OPs will have a strong consumer focus and substantial consumer involvement. CO-OP members will have over 50% representation on the board, and all CO-OP members will democratically elect the board members. In addition, as the CO-OP plan offerings are developed, they’ll include consumer-focused features to ensure lower costs, improved benefits, and higher-quality health care for plan members.

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