Drexel Recognizes Gregory E. Deavens, CPA, CGMA as Business Leader of the Year

Presented annually by LeBow College of Business, the Business Leader of the Year award is one of the most prestigious honors in the Greater Philadelphia region.
Portrait of Gregory Deavens
Gregory E. Deavens, CPA, CGMA, president and chief executive officer of Independence Health Group.

Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business has named Gregory E. Deavens, CPA, CGMA, president and chief executive officer of Independence Health Group, as its 2024 Business Leader of the Year.

Deavens is president and chief executive officer for Independence Health Group (Independence), parent of Independence Blue Cross, one of the nation’s leading health insurers. Under his leadership, Independence has been committed to advancing equitable, whole-person health care. This includes an emphasis on reducing racial and economic health inequities and integrating physical and behavioral health care. The organization also has focused on partnerships dedicated to reducing the cost of medications for the benefit of members and employer customers.

“Since taking the reins at Independence Blue Cross, Greg has been a trusted partner to so many organizations in the Greater Philadelphia region,” said Drexel President John Fry. “He has disrupted the longstanding state of health care, confronted health equity issues and is focused on making health care accessible to all. I have witnessed this commitment first-hand through his efforts in helping to sustain St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children as not only a premier teaching hospital for medical students, residents, and nurses, but also a civic treasure for Philadelphia. For his leadership in promoting inclusion and equity in health care and in moving our region forward, I am proud to honor Greg with our Business Leader of the Year award.”

The recipient of numerous awards and honors, Deavens has been named to Savoy magazine’s Most Influential Black Executives in Corporate America, Philadelphia magazine’s Most Influential People in Philadelphia, and Modern Healthcare’s 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare, among other honors.

He is Chair-elect of the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia’s board of directors and serves on numerous other boards, including Alegeus Technologies, America’s Health Insurance Plans, BCS Financial Corporation, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Hartford HealthCare, National Institute for Health Care Management, and Quartet Health. He also is on the advisory board for PNC Bank (Philadelphia Region). In addition, Deavens serves as trustee of the Barnes Foundation, on the board of directors of the African American Museum in Philadelphia, and as an honorary trustee of the Amistad Center for Art & Culture. He also served on the transition leadership board of Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro.

Deavens will receive the award on April 3 at a ceremonial event held in his honor. Proceeds from the event will fund scholarships and support academic programs within LeBow College.

Established in 1954 by business student George Ross ’55, Hon. ’99, who years later as an investment banker became the 35th annual honoree, the Business Leader of the Year is one of the most prestigious honors in the Greater Philadelphia region. Past recipients include H. F. “Gerry” Lenfest, Philadelphia entrepreneur, newspaper publisher and philanthropist; Denis O’Brien, former president and CEO of PECO and executive vice president of Exelon; David L. Cohen, former executive vice president of Comcast Corporation; Eileen McDonnell, former chairman and CEO of Penn Mutual; and Judith M. von Seldeneck, founder and chair of the Diversified Search Group.

For more information, visit: www.lebow.drexel.edu/about/alumni-and-engagement/business-leader-year.