Chess has been called "the game of kings," but in the case of Ricardo Garcia, it's also the game of an insurance technologist. Garcia, director II, capability development factory, supply chain management group, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida (Jacksonville, Fla., $3.5 billion total assets), was a chess champion at college four years in a row, and participated in the World Chess Open Championship in 1986, where he took fourth place in a field of about 300 new and unrated players.
Chess remains an important part of Garcia's life. "I play almost daily, thanks to the Internet," he says. At sites such as the Internet Chess Club and ChessBase, Garcia is able to compete in one- and five-minute games with remote opponents. "These are very fast games, with an average of three seconds per move," Garcia explains. "We play three to five games per hour."
For all the extra-curricular enjoyment that Garcia gets from chess, he asserts that it is relevant to his work. "In chess you learn to plan while observing the tactical implications, assessing micro-advantages and executing-it's about making decisions and not being afraid to live with the consequences," he explains. "That's what I do here daily as an executive at Blue Cross: making decisions for the long term but dealing with daily operations and tactics."
Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio