Vladimir (Vlad), began his insurance career as an account executive with Oxford Health Plans in 1995. As he learned more about the benefits market, Vlad began to notice a disturbing trend among brokers: the tendency to deliver the same, cookie cutter, benefits options regardless of clients’ individual needs. Believing each business to be unique, Vlad founded CBSI in 1998 with his wife, Rachelle, to offer companies customized, cost-effective solutions to match their benefits needs and business objectives.
Vlad is known for speaking honestly and openly about employee problems/issues, solving problems and making the complicated simple. He feels that any time he can convince a business owner to invest in their people, we all win! Vlad looks forward to exceeding his client’s expectations. He often says, “If we can’t leave your company, your employees and your bottom line better than when we met you, then we have no business meeting with you.”
He is a member and current president of The Executives Association of New Jersey (EANJ) EANJ is the region’s premier networking organization. Its members are a highly qualified group of industry-leading companies doing business in The Garden State and beyond.
He is passionate about youth sports and coaches his daughter’s soccer team. He loves how team sports teach you so much about life. He also really enjoys watching MMA (Mixed Martial Arts), live and on TV. On any weekend, you will find him playing basketball, watching his kids, Coby & Kyler, play soccer or just watching some MMA event.
Vlad is also a “foodie” and loves finding new and different creations or any new place for buffalo wings (one of the things in life he would never give up!).
He plays Santa every year, handing out gifts and letting them sit on his lap at the CBSI’s annual Christmas party for The Word In Action International Ministries. He enjoys mission work and traveled to Brazil and Exuma (Bahamas). He hopes to do missions in Haiti one day, his native country.
Rachelle started her insurance career at Oxford Health Plans in 1990, after leaving nursing school to move to CT. Because of her medical background, she wanted to work for a company where she could use her medical knowledge. After the birth of her son, she retired from Oxford in 1998 to focus on raising him. At the same time, Vladimir decided to leave Oxford and start his own firm. It was a natural transition for Rachelle to become his assistant, handling service issues and running the business from their home.
Rachelle is known for being a “techie” nerd and is the go to person for computer problems and questions. Although she does not claim to be an expert, she does love new gadgets and figuring out why something doesn’t work. “After all, you can pretty much Google the answer to anything.”
Rachelle is passionate about helping others. She coordinates a charity Christmas party each year for 1000 kids at The Word In Action International Ministries, her father-in-law’s church. She also helps out local community groups. Rachelle also loves to sing and does so once a month at Princeton Alliance Church, their family’s church. She has also gone on mission trips with Princeton Alliance and enjoy helping those in need in other countries such as Brazil & Exuma, in the Bahamas. In addition to her church work, Rachelle has served as a soccer and basketball coach for her children, Coby & Kyler.
Rachelle grew up in Altoona, PA & met Vladimir at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (PA). They live in East Windsor and you can find them pretty much every weekend on some soccer field somewhere!
Donna started her career in the airline industry. Because of the ups and downs (no pun intended!) of that industry, she left and went back to college. She also worked part-time in a doctor’s billing office. Thus began her healthcare career. She went to work for Oxford Health Plans, where she was Vladimir’s account manager. When she left Oxford to have the first of 3 sons, Vladimir asked her to join him as his account manager for CBSI. Five year later, she was named Vice President of CBSI.
She is known as the “appeals queen.” She loves helping people and working at CBSI allows her to touch people in a very personal way and help them through some of the most difficult times of their lives. Donna finds that most issues can be resolved with persistence, patience and the knack of navigating the healthcare maze. Many of Donna’s clients refer to her as “The Shark.” They know that she will fight whole-heartedly to resolve their issue.
Donna is passionate about helping people. She loves to get to know people on a personal level and finds solving their problems very rewarding. One of her other passions is being a youth group leader for the girls at her church. She loves spending time with the girls since she has all boys (3 of them!) at home. She has also gone on missions trips with her church to Kentucky and Philadelphia, describing them as life changing. She is also involved in our company sponsored charity Christmas party every year, planning, setting up and handing out gifts to underprivileged children.
Donna grew up in Frenchtown, NJ and lives just 30 minutes from there now with her husband, Ed and her three boys. Donna and Ed are very active in their church and their faith is #1 in their lives. Much of their time is spent at a variety of sporting events with three very active boys. When not on a sporting field, you will find Donna on the beach any time she gets the chance!
Theresa Semple is an employee benefits professional with 17 years experience who takes pride in protecting her clients’ interests and their most valued assets – their employees. She began her career as an independent employee benefits broker with CBSI in January of 2002. Having worked previously on the carrier side, Theresa felt she could assist groups better as an independent broker. She takes the time to understand each client’s business helping them navigate the complexities of the benefits environment so she can effectively offer them the best possible solution for their needs.
Her clients trust her and rely on her as a business resource because they know she has their best interest in mind. Her commitment to helping clients any way she can, even with issues outside her industry expertise, means she goes the extra mile to find the answers or to connect them with the best resources. Being hands-on with every client is important to her as she builds mutual trust and respect based integrity and reliability. She works with the highest degree of ethics because she puts her reputation on the line, as well as her client’s.
Her career began in October 1995 at Oxford Health Plans where she started out as a Customer Service Associate. Within one year, she moved into the Small Group arena working with the Enrollment/Auditing Department, which helped to launch her career in sales in 1997.
To her credit, Theresa has received several awards as an industry leader as well as awards for her community involvement and volunteer efforts including starting Families Helping Families in Sayreville, volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, and serving as Chairperson for Sayreville Day for five years. She is also passionate about helping charities that address the need to find a cure for pancreatic cancer and breast cancer.
To unwind, Theresa enjoys reading on the beach or spending time with family and friends sharing a meal, having a laugh or two, or just kicking back and relaxing. She lives in Sayreville, New Jersey where she raised her (now adult) daughters.
Theresa is a grounded person whose humor adds flavor to her personality! If you ask her how she lives life, she will tell you, “I’m a good person who wants to help others. I love my family and friends and value their love.”
Eddy was born in London, England. At the ripe old age of 15 1/2 he joined the Royal Navy and served his Country for 15 years, including serving in Northern Ireland and the Falklands War 1982. Eddy spent the last five years of his military career in the Military Police S.I.B. Unit (Navy Special Investigation Unit-Drug and SVU Unit). He understands truth, honesty, loyalty, and above all service to others.
It was a natural transition to be recruited to the cruise industry as the head of security and developed many of the new security measures that now are in force in all cruise lines today. However, after two years the challenge was not enough for Eddy and he needed to make a move that in the end would bring him to New Jersey. He moved into the cruise department as a Dive Instructor/Cruise Staff and after a short time, became an Assistant Cruise Director and followed by the advancement to the biggest cruise ship in the world at the time The Voyager Of the Seas (RCCL).
In 2005, Eddy, moved to New Jersey and has loved it ever since. He has a two year-old daughter, Shannon, the love of his life.
In January 2012, Eddy joined the CBSI team. As the connector, his number one goal is to improve the relationship between the employer and employee. Eddy’s goal is to bring together other companies that are connected to CBSI and in doing so help them grow into a better, more productive company with happier, more informed employees. After all, your employees are your ultimate profit and growth for the future.
Eddy says, “Some people don’t like their job, and I love my CBSI team because they CARE! The service they offer is by far the best I have ever experienced. To be a small part of that makes my day, each and every day.”
Tara is licensed Health producer with over 10+ years in the insurance industry. After graduating from Rutgers University, Tara began her career in the enrollment department of an insurance carrier, moving next to the customer service department, and then making a transition from the carrier side to the broker side. Her experience with working for 5 different insurance carriers gives her that “insider” knowledge that makes her a very successful and efficient account manager at CBSI.
Tara has started working more on the marketing of CBSI- website, employer newsletters, advertising, social media etc. She really enjoys working on those aspects.
Away from work, Tara is a reality TV show junkie and loves going to the movies. She loves to read and play scrabble. She is also a die-hard Patriots fan! Tara lives with her husband and step-daughter in Hightstown, NJ.
Alexis began her career with Customized Benefit Solutions, Inc. as their bookkeeper in September 2005. At that time her responsibilities included entering commissions, paying invoices and tracking the company’s income and expenses. Through the years, her duties have expanded to include office administration and servicing approximately 50 accounts as an Account Manager. Alexis continues to expand her knowledge of the health insurance industry daily. She enjoys working with the CBSI team members and the clients they all work with to ensure they are receiving the best possible service.
Prior to joining Customized Benefit Solutions, Inc, Alexis worked for 8 years at American Cyanamid Company in Princeton, NJ. There she worked as a Financial Analyst and moved on to become the Manager of the Accounts Payable Department.
Away from the office, Alexis loves spending time with her husband and twin teenagers. They all enjoy going to the beach, the movies and just hanging out at home with their dog, Charlie.
Xiomara has worked in the insurance industry for 20 years. She also worked with Vlad in his years at Oxford Health Plans. She spent 7 years at Oxford and then moved on to Wells Fargo where she provided clients with proposals and helped with involved claims and billing issues. While looking for a place to work that was closer to home, Vlad called just to catch up and the rest is CBSI history.
She is respected by her clients for getting complex issues resolved. Xiomara likes to guide clients through the many complicated issues in the healthcare industry so they can better help themselves and their employees. She helps handle many large group quotes for our office as well as ancillary line quotes. Xiomara is known around CBSI as a stickler for the rules and regulations, and we are very thankful because there are many in the health insurance world!
Xiomara came to the US from Cuba at the age of 4, living in Elizabeth, NJ. After marrying, she moved from the city to have a more peaceful life and a rural place to raise their two teenaged daughters. She now resides with them and her husband, Dave, in Monroe. She loves to spend time with her family, having fun, going to the beach or park and just handing out. She is very close with her family and friends and can’t wait for the teenage years to be over! : )