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Thrivent Names Robbins Its First CIO

Former Perot Systems Exec leads IT organization of post merger Aid Association for Lutherans/Lutheran Brotherhood.

Former program director at Perot Systems Corp. (Dallas), Larry A. Robbins has been appointed CIO of Minneapolis-based Thrivent Financial, the country's largest fraternal benefit society, created through the January merger of Aid Association for Lutherans and Lutheran Brotherhood (AAL/LB). Robbins' first task in his new position will be to supervise the consolidation of the two companies' IT organizations.

Robbins was not entirely unacquainted with the firm. While with Perot, he led a three-year program at Lutheran Brotherhood, beginning in 1996, to define a member-oriented service strategy. "During that time we found we shared a common view of where the business needed to go," Robbins says.

The consolidation challenge at Thrivent will be eased somewhat by the efforts undertaken by the IT organizations of its component companies in advance of Robbins' arrival. "It's a tribute to the talent and character of those folks that, in the absence of a single CIO, they had to work as a committee and were able to do so successfully," Robbins says.

They also had the prudence to leave certain critical decisions to the appropriate party, leaving Robbins a challenge tailored to his expertise. "My focus is to combine these two companies into a single IT division, consolidate application functions, and accomplish the merger for IT," he says.

Prior to joining Thrivent, Robbins led the effort to consolidate and standardize IT services and infrastructure for Catholic Health Care West (San Francisco).

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

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