CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — Karen Ward has been promoted to vice president of human resources at BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee.

In this role, Ward will have responsibility for human resources functions across all lines of business for the company, which employs 5,200 workers across Tennessee. Areas of oversight include organizational development, compensation, benefits, talent acquisition and training.

“Karen’s proven leadership will help our employees maximize their career potential and ensure the company continues to attract and retain the top talent necessary to achieve its business objectives,” said Ron Harr, senior vice president of human resources and public affairs for BlueCross.

Ward joined BlueCross BlueShield of Memphis in 1983, where she held primary responsibility for payroll and human resources for 15 years. When the Memphis plan merged with BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee in 1998, she provided leadership for the integration and managed numerous corporate responsibilities including policies, communications, and diversity initiatives.

Since 2005, Ward has served as director of business consulting for BlueCross. She has managed a team of HR professionals who provided strategic consulting and performance management, as well as program and policy development for internal client groups.

Ward received her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Middle Tennessee State University and has achieved the Senior Professional Human Resources designation from the National Society of Human Resources accreditation body.

About BlueCross

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's mission is to provide its customers and communities with peace of mind through affordable solutions for health and healing, life and living. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on reinventing the health plan for its 3 million members in Tennessee and across the country. Through its integrated health management approach, BlueCross provides patient-centric products and services that drive health improvement and positively impact health care quality and value. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at