President and CEO
CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
Brian Pieninck has an extensive professional background in health care leadership. Before joining CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield in 2015, Pieninck worked with Aetna International for 19 years in leadership positions. Pieninck was named president and CEO in 2018.
When the pandemic hit, Pieninck served as a leading voice in urging businesses and leaders to take appropriate safety measures. In an Op-Ed piece published in The Baltimore Sun on March 23, 2020, Pieninck wrote, “We must first accept these circumstances are very different than any we have experienced. Leading through this will require sustained empathy, good judgment and extreme flexibility. As leaders we must think creatively and act compassionately. Our words and actions must convey that no one should hesitate to care for personal health and to protect the health of others.”
Pieninck reduced in-person staff at headquarters and its other locations by 90% and instituted a work-from-home mandate to keep employees and their families healthy.
Being an Influential Marylander is a great responsibility. What influence did you have during the pandemic that thrust you to help others or to move your company forward in difficult times?
The mission and values that live through the people at CareFirst influence me every day. There’s a shared commitment to be here for the people and communities we serve. Now more than ever, it is imperative to find solutions and have an immediate impact, including removing barriers to care, and reaching people where they are regardless of circumstance. As always, our associates rose to the challenge, making an incredible difference in our communities. The energy and resilience of our workforce continue to inspire and influence me every day.