BLOOMINGTON, IL—Insurance giant State Farm has named Mike Fernandez vice president of corporate communications and external relations. Fernandez joins State Farm from ConAgra Foods, where he was chief communications officer.
Fernandez has led the public relations function at three other Fortune 500 companies—U.S. West, CIGNA and ConAgra Foods. He also served in various communications and marketing roles at Eastman Kodak Company and was press secretary to former U.S. Senator Ernest F. Hollings. His selection ends a year-long external search by State Farm to bring in a leader with substantial experience in communications and government affairs.
“Mike’s extensive experience in managing corporate reputations and driving strategic public relations programs will contribute in our efforts to effectively engage key stakeholders, including customers,” said Bill King, executive vice president of State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company.
State Farm insures more cars than any other company in North America and is the leading U.S. home insurer. It has 17,000 agents and 69,000 employees serving nearly 73 million policies in the United States and Canada.