Allan Allford, president and CEO of Delta Dental of Arizona, plans to retire by Dec. 31, after more than 11 years leading the state’s top dental insurance company and more than 43 years in the health care and private sectors.
“Under Allan’s leadership, Delta Dental of Arizona has nearly tripled its membership and our foundation has made significant strides in improving oral health throughout the state,” said Candace Wiest, chairwoman of the board of directors for Delta Dental of Arizona. “He will be greatly missed but has developed a team of strong leaders that will ensure the company’s continued success.”
Delta Dental is the largest and most experienced dental insurer in Arizona, covering more than 1.2 million smiles. During Allford’s tenure, the company achieved substantial growth in membership and revenue, increased the size of its PPO dentist network, improved business operations and developed a workforce culture that attracts and retains top talent. However, it is the advancement of the nonprofit insurer’s mission to improve lives by promoting optimal oral health that Allford is most proud of.
“While I’m proud of the many accomplishments our team has made over the past 11 years, it’s the relationships and lives we’ve touched that I’ll remember most,” Allford said.
“There is no greater reward than knowing you made a positive impact in people’s lives, and I am humbled when I reflect on the role that Delta Dental and our foundation have played in enriching so many.”
Since 2011, the Delta Dental of Arizona Foundation has improved the well-being of more than 2 million Arizonans and given back $11 million to the communities it serves through community grants, strategic partnerships, education programs and dental supply donations. Some key initiatives include substantial gifts to St. Vincent de Paul in Phoenix to expand and operate its dental clinic for underserved children and adults, the creation of an oral health educator role at Phoenix Children’s Hospital to help lower patient infection rates, and a partnership with HonorHealth to fund dental treatment for uninsured patients who visit emergency rooms with dental issues.
Delta Dental of Arizona’s board of directors is working with executive search firm WittKieffer to identify and select a replacement. The approach to the process will ensure a smooth leadership transition, and Allford will continue to lead Delta Dental in the interim.