Outstanding Achievement Award Recipient
University of Minnesota, Duluth and Carlson School of Management, September 24, 2015
Robert L. Senkler, distinguished business leader, received a bachelor of science in mathematics at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) in 1974. That same year, he received a job offer from Minnesota Life Insurance Co. (now Securian) climbed the corporate ladder, and by 1987, he was vice president of the individual insurance division. In 1994, Senkler became the company’s CEO. At age 41, he was the youngest chief executive in Minnesota Life’s history. He has spent his entire career at Minnesota Life Insurance Co./Securian and, as CEO for 20 years. Senkler is described as a hometown guy who is highly ethical, risk-averse, yet ambitious, and as someone who cares deeply about the wellbeing of Minnesotans. He is an exceptional community leader who has led initiatives such as building the Twin Cities Light Rail Green Line and CHS Field in Lowertown St. Paul, and helping to bring the Minnesota Wild to St. Paul. He is credited with leading the successful intervention to end the 25-year dispute among arts organizations and saving the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts. Senkler’s long-term leadership as a member of the Carlson School Board of Overseers is highly valued. He is a frequent speaker and strategic advisor, and has championed Securian’s involvement with the University as a funder and as a partner. He has served on numerous boards, foundations, and associations, including the Minnesota Math League Advisory Board, the Wilder Foundation, Minnesota Orchestra, HealthEast, University of Minnesota Actuarial Advisory Board, and the Boy Scouts of America, to name a few. In 2003, UMD proudly indicted Senkler into the prestigious Academy of Science and Engineering. In 2006, Minneapolis/St. Paul Magazine named him Executive of the Year; and in 2012, he received the Deubner Legacy of Leadership Award by the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce and was inducted into the Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest Hall of Fame.
Biographies are as-of time of award presentation.