September 01, 2022 | Tags: News Releases

CLEVELAND, Ohio — To honor recently retired Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Rick Chiricosta’s dedication and commitment to Ohio’s communities, Medical Mutual is making significant gifts to five institutions in the state.

The Company surprised Mr. Chiricosta with the news on Aug. 31, announcing gifts to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, the Playhouse Square Foundation, Bowling Green State University and the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation. All are Medical Mutual customer organizations that the company and Mr. Chiricosta have enthusiastically supported.

Mr. Chiricosta led the Cleveland-based health insurer from 2009 until his retirement as CEO on July 31. He remains on the Board of Directors. During his tenure, he had many accomplishments that contributed to the company’s success, including its entry into Medicare Advantage in 2016 and overseeing key acquisitions that helped diversify and strengthen Medical Mutual’s position. He also conceived and created Mutual Appreciation, an engagement program that underscores Medical Mutual’s commitment to and support of its customers. In all, he spent more than 35 years at Medical Mutual in various roles.

Mr. Chiricosta also created a lasting legacy in the communities Medical Mutual serves. Under his leadership and advocacy, Medical Mutual steadfastly supported Ohio organizations and institutions that work to better the conditions in which Ohio residents live, learn and work.

“With these gifts, we celebrate Rick’s legacy and unwavering commitment to supporting organizations that enrich the lives of Ohioans,” said Andrea Hogben, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Medical Mutual. “The principle that we are all stronger together has guided our work with our community partners and is one that Rick has championed. These gifts will allow Rick’s vision to continue to support future generations.”

Greater Cleveland Food Bank

The donation to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank’s capital campaign will help the organization support the most vulnerable members of our community. The Food Bank serves more than 343,000 people per year through its network of 1,000-plus local food pantry partners. In addition to providing food and other critical items, the Food Bank supports its partners with guidance and other resources. In recognition of Mr. Chiricosta’s commitment to the Food Bank and his service as past Co-Chair of Harvest for Hunger Campaigns, the Partner Services Center in the Food Bank’s new facility under construction in Cleveland’s Collinwood neighborhood will be named The Rick Chiricosta Partner Services Center.

“This space is at the core of what we do, and we are so honored to have Rick’s name representing it,” said Kristin Warzocha, President and CEO of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum

In recognition of Mr. Chiricosta’s guidance as a Rock Hall board member and his partnership as a business leader — and to celebrate his love for music — the donation will go to the museum’s capital expansion project. The keyboard station in the museum’s Garage Band exhibition will be renamed the Rick Chiricosta Keyboard Studio to honor his longstanding support of the Rock Hall. The musuem’s expansion will include learning labs, space for the Rock Hall’s Library and Archives, and interactive activities like the Garage Band exhibit.

“We cannot thank Rick enough for his support of the Rock Hall over all these years,” said Greg Harris, President and CEO of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Playhouse Square Foundation

The gift in honor of Mr. Chiricosta and his wife, Sheila Chiricosta, to Playhouse Square Foundation’s capital campaign will support funding accessibility services. The Rick & Sheila Chiricosta Arts for All Grant will underwrite the cost of equipment and resources to make shows more accessible for those with disabilities. Enhancements will include sign language interpreters, closed-captioning options for reading on personal devices, and the ability to feed audio directly into personal devices.

“This gift is allowing us to open the doors for a more pleasurable theater experience for all,” said Gina Vernaci, President and CEO of Playhouse Square.

“Rick was one of the very first people to believe in our vision and to commit to helping transform the theater district into what it is today,” she added.

Bowling Green State University

A Bowling Green State University alumnus and a founding member of the university’s Insurance and Risk Management Institute, Mr. Chiricosta has been a longtime supporter of BGSU’s academic programs, athletics and graduates.

The gift will establish the Chiricosta Family Endowed Tennis Scholarship to show appreciation for the entire family’s impact on the BGSU women’s tennis program. Mr. Chiricosta’s daughters, Nikki McFall and Christine Dieken, are BGSU graduates and decorated tennis players at the university. His wife, Sheila Chiricosta, had a successful run coaching the BGSU women’s tennis team for three years.

“This student scholarship is designed to make sure that young women right here in Ohio have the opportunity to excel for years to come,” said Rodney K. Rogers, BGSU President.

Cuyahoga Community College Foundation

The gift is being made in recognition of Mr. Chiricosta’s commitment to accessible, affordable education and will be used to create The Rick Chiricosta Centers of Excellence Scholarship Fund. This donation will help provide cutting-edge training and open doors for students in high-demand fields across Northeast Ohio.

Mr. Chiricosta is a director emeritus of the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation and formerly served as board chair. Medical Mutual has supported Tri-C and its students for many years though scholarships, emergency-assistance funding and additional wraparound support donations.
“Rick and his Medical Mutual team have helped us meet students where they are and ensure they have resources to overcome their challenges and achieve their dreams,” said Megan O’Bryan, President of the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation.

About Medical Mutual of Ohio

Founded in 1934, Medical Mutual is the oldest and one of the largest health insurance companies based in Ohio. We provide peace of mind to more than 1.2 million Ohioans through our high-quality health, life, disability, dental, vision and indemnity plans. We offer fully insured and self-funded group coverage, including stop loss, as well as Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement and individual plans. Medical Mutual’s status as a mutual company means we are owned by our members, not stockholders, so we don’t answer to Wall Street analysts or pay dividends to investors. Instead, we focus on developing products and services that allow us to better serve our customers and the communities around us and help our members achieve their best possible health and quality of life. For more information, visit the company’s website at MedMutual.com.

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