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Michele Thornton: Michele is a seasoned employee benefitsconsultant with 13 years experience. Her work focuses primarily on the smallgroup fully insured sector, with additional expertise in alternative fundingand consumer driven approaches. Michele’s clients find her to be innovative,hands on and a trusted resource for legal, tax, and compliance issues. She hasbeen a dedicated participant in the National Association of compliance issues.She has been a dedicated participant in the National Association of HealthUnderwriters, and is the Past President of the Illinois State Board. Michele ispassionate about finding creative solutions to employers’ health benefitchallenges, and is working diligently on a statewide task force to ensureeffective implementation of the federal healthcare reform bill. Michele is alsoan Adjunct Faculty member at two Chicago- area universities teaching classesranging from Healthcare Finance to Health Insurance and Employee Benefits. As arecent graduate of DePaul University’s MBA program and a native Chicagoan, herties to the windy city are strong. Michele lives in the Little Italyneighborhood close to University of Illinois-Chicago where she has begun towork on her PhD in Healthcare Policy and Administration. Michele believes thata time of such rapid growth and changes in the world of healthcare finance- heracademic and consulting work complement each other in a unique and valuableway.

Sarah McGrath:Sarah has worked as an employee Benefits Consultant for 11 years withthorntonpowell insurance and financial services and acted in the role of benefitsDivision Manager since April of 2010. She specializes in Employer SponsoredBenefits for businesses including medical, ancillary, and voluntary products tosuit specific employee needs. Her process focuses on preliminary risk analysis,plan marketing, selection and implementation. Sarah feels strongly aboutrounding out services and is a champion for claims advocacy, conductingemployee benefit meetings, enrolling new eligible employees, terminatingemployees, offering guidance for IL State Cont./COBRA, educating employergroups on PPACA and other compliance issues. Sarah is an active member of theNational Association of Health Underwriters and is the Current LegislativeChair for the Illinois State Association of Health Underwriters. She is astrong advocate and trusted resource for legislators and small businessesregarding health insurance and benefits legislation at both the state andfederal level. Sarah has participated in the Illinois Health Benefits ExchangeLegislative Study Committee hearings – and believes this knowledge andexpertise will dramatically benefit the clients she works with as the Illinoismarketplace for health insurance continues to evolve. Sarah is a graduate ofSouthern Illinois University with a degree in Marketing. She resides in HomerGlen, IL with her husband and their daughter.

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