Laurie Riley Brubaker '82
Senior vice president of pharmacy, Aetna
In the Pink
"I chose Moravian because of the superior reputation of its psychology program and was never disappointed."
Recognized “one of the top fifteen women in business” (Pink magazine, March/April 2008), Laurie Brubaker ’82 relies upon a winning combination of people skills, business savvy, and sheer determination to help her succeed.
Several years ago, she approached her boss with an idea to offer health care coverage to individuals and small groups, but his reaction was less than enthusiastic. “He didn’t exactly laugh at me, but he nodded his head and sent me away,” she recalls. “But I wasn’t ready to go off into my corner just yet. With millions of Americans uninsured, there was an incredible need for products and services to meet those needs.”
Not dissuaded by her proposal’s initial lukewarm reception, she put together a presentation that wowed the company’s president and got her the green light. With a team of true believers, she developed a business-within-a-business that now brings health care to about 400,000 members in 30 states. “We’re looking to grow to a million members,” she notes.
Laurie was a psychology major with an elementary education minor at Moravian and headed for grad school when a summer job convinced her to explore the business world. “I always say that a psychology background is great for business,” she says. “It really helps you understand people. I chose Moravian because of the superior reputation of its psychology program and was never disappointed.
“The caliber of the professors, the ability to participate in research, and its Honors program truly differentiated it from other institutions. I was fortunate to be exposed to an academic program that truly emphasized a well-rounded experience. Our academic studies were not limited to the classroom but also included real-world opportunities to work in the community at healthcare institutions and schools. Through these experiences, I discovered an opportunity to blend my interest in social sciences with the business of delivering health care.” Laurie Brubaker received the 2010 Moravian College Comenius Award.