October 13, 2017

Commissioner Donelon Names Chief of Staff

Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon announced today his appointment of Mary Elizabeth “Liz” Butler as Chief of Staff of the Louisiana Department of Insurance (LDI). As Chief of Staff, Butler will oversee the agency budget, personnel and day-to-day operations of the agency. The appointment took effect earlier this month.

“As the Assistant Deputy Commissioner in our Office of Consumer Services, Liz has been on the front lines reviewing, researching and addressing policyholder concerns across all lines of insurance. I have full confidence that she will help guide our agency in our mission to enforce the laws of our state with the highest professional standards,” said Commissioner Donelon. “Her background and professional experience offer both a solid knowledge base as well as a unique perspective that will serve us well.”

Butler joined the LDI’s Division of Legal Services in 2013 as a regulatory attorney. She was promoted to the Office of Consumer Services position in 2015. Prior to the LDI, Liz worked in the private sector as an attorney, a legislative assistant and as claim litigation counsel. Butler received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from Louisiana State University and her Juris Doctorate from the Loyola University of New Orleans College of Law. She also has a Market Conduct Management designation from the Insurance Regulatory Examiners Society.

Butler replaces Denise Gardner who served the Department of Insurance for 28 years, including as Chief of Staff/Chief Deputy. Gardner was instrumental in the development and implementation of the Insure Louisiana Incentive Program which helped attract new insurers to Louisiana following the devastating hurricanes of 2005. She also served as chairwoman of the board of the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, the state’s insurer of last resort.

“Denise’s contributions were significant and impactful and we were fortunate to have her expertise here at the department,” said Commissioner Donelon. “She demonstrated strong leadership in the most trying times, in particular during the recovery of the property and casualty markets following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.”

About the Louisiana Department of Insurance: The Louisiana Department of Insurance works to improve competition in the state’s insurance market while assisting individuals and businesses with the information and resources they need to be informed consumers of insurance. As a regulator, the LDI enforces the laws that provide a fair and stable marketplace and makes certain that insurers comply with the laws in place to protect policyholders. You can contact the LDI by calling 1-800-259-5300 or visiting