Alliance for Iowa State
-Make Your Voice Heard-

Meet Laura Jackson '90

Johnston, Iowa

"Business is a team sport," said Laura Jackson of Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield.


"If you want to be successful in the working world, don't think for a minute it is all about you," said the Iowa State University graduate with a degree in psychology.


Laura uses her "team first" attitude every day as Wellmark's Executive Vice President for Health Care Innovation and Business Development. She is responsible for sales, marketing, management and compensation of the provider network, pharmacy program, and much more for Iowa and South Dakota's largest health insurer.


The Manchester, Iowa native began her career in human resources where she worked to positively change behaviors so people would deliver great outcomes. "Everything I learned in psychology at Iowa State, and everything I learned going forward in human resources, was really trying to learn what motivates people."


Over time, Laura's Wellmark roles grew significantly. In 2008 she led the team that built a sustainable health care strategy for Iowa and South Dakota that matched the average increase in health care costs to the rate of inflation. As a part of this strategy, three years later she oversaw the Blue Zones Project® which is a key element of Governor Branstad's Healthiest State Initiative.


No matter the size of her project, Laura begins by having an outcome in mind, something she learned doing research at Iowa State. "If you start with the end in mind, either in research or business, you will do all the right things to get there."


As a business and team leader, Laura is an example of the 97,000 ISU alumni living in Iowa and contributing to the state's economic health.

 Iowa State's Mission:
Create, share, and apply knowledge to make 
Iowa and the world a better place.

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The Alliance for Iowa State is maintained by the Iowa State University Alumni Association. 


The Alliance for Iowa State is a coalition of Iowa State University alumni, parents, students, faculty, staff, and friends.

The Alliance advocates Iowa State University's land grant mission throughout Iowa while focusing its advocacy on

state legislators and public policy makers.