Craig DeSanto assumes New York Life Chief Executive Officer position. 

New York | April 18, 2022

DeSanto will serve as 19th Chief Executive in company’s 178-year history.

NEW YORK — New York Life, America's largest1 mutual life insurer, today announced that Craig DeSanto has assumed the company’s chief executive officer (CEO) position. Mr. DeSanto was named CEO-elect in November 2021 after serving as a member of New York Life’s Board of Directors since February 2021 and as New York Life’s president, a title he will retain, since July 2020.

As CEO, Mr. DeSanto will lead one of the largest life insurance companies in the world. New York Life and its affiliates provide insurance, investment, and retirement solutions that help people at all stages of life, delivered through the company’s industry-leading agency field force. New York Life also provides insurance and investment solutions to the institutional market and operates one of the world’s largest global asset managers through New York Life Investments2. New York Life has $760 billion in assets under management3 and a workforce of more than 23,000 agents and employees.

Mr. DeSanto succeeds Ted Mathas, who served as CEO for nearly fourteen years. Mr. Mathas will remain chairman of the board in a non-executive capacity.

“I am honored to have the confidence of New York Life’s Board of Directors and to succeed Ted as the next steward of the company,” said Mr. DeSanto. “Having built my entire career at New York Life, I have a deep appreciation for our 177-year track record of enduring success in providing financial security and peace of mind to our policy owners and clients. Our historic period of growth under Ted’s leadership capitalized on our mutuality, superior financial strength, unrivaled career agency system, and our outstanding, diverse team of dedicated agents and employees. As a result, we are exceptionally well-positioned to continue to provide the trusted advice and guidance our clients expect from us and to always be there when we are needed the most.”

Mr. DeSanto joined New York Life in 1997 as an actuarial summer intern and was promoted into roles of increasing responsibility across the company’s finance and business operations, which included leading the institutional and individual life insurance businesses. In 2015, Mr. DeSanto was appointed leader of the company’s strategic businesses, where he strengthened and further diversified a portfolio of businesses that complement and support the company’s core retail insurance business. Today, these strategic businesses generate roughly half of New York Life’s earnings and are a significant contributor to dividends paid. 

In 2018, Mr. DeSanto assumed oversight for New York Life’s top-ranked retail annuity business line. In 2019, he added oversight of New York Life Investment Management (NYLIM), New York Life’s multi-boutique third-party asset management business serving institutions and individuals around the world with more than $432 billion in assets under management4. In 2020, Mr. DeSanto led the effort to close the acquisition of Cigna’s Group Life and Disability business, now known as New York Life Group Benefit Solutions. The acquisition was the largest in New York Life’s history.

“Craig is a proven leader and is highly qualified to further New York Life’s tradition of delivering on the company’s commitments to policy owners and clients, agents and employees, and the communities where we work and live,” said Mr. Mathas. “In a career that spans more than two decades with New York Life, he has held leadership roles and produced outstanding results in virtually every line of business. He has a clear vision for building on our company’s success, anchored by a steadfast commitment to our mission, purpose, and values.”


New York Life Insurance Company (, a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845, is the largest1 mutual life insurance company in the United States and one of the largest life insurers in the world. Headquartered in New York City, New York Life’s family of companies offers life insurance, retirement income, investments, and long-term care insurance. New York Life has the highest financial strength ratings currently awarded to any U.S. life insurer from all four of the major credit rating agencies5.

New York Life Group Benefit Solutions products and services are provided by Life Insurance Company of North America or New York Life Group Insurance Company of NY, subsidiaries of New York Life Insurance Company. Life Insurance Company of North America is not authorized in New York and does not conduct insurance business in New York.

Note: “New York Life” or “the company” can refer either separately to the parent company, New York Life Insurance Company (NYLIC), or one of its subsidiaries, or collectively to all New York Life companies, which include NYLIC and its subsidiaries and affiliates, including New York Life Insurance and Annuity Corporation (NYLIAC), NYLIFE Insurance Company of Arizona (NYLAZ), Life Insurance Company of North America (LINA), and New York Life Group Insurance Company of NY (NYLGICNY). NYLAZ is not authorized in New York or Maine, and does not conduct insurance business in New York or Maine. LINA is not authorized in New York and does not conduct insurance business in New York. LINA and NYLGICNY are referred to as the New York Life Group Benefit Solutions business. Any discussion of ratings and safety applies only to the financial strength of New York Life, and not to the performance of any investment products issued by the company. Such products’ performances will fluctuate with market conditions.

1Based on revenue as reported by “Fortune 500 ranked within Industries, Insurance: Life, Health (Mutual),” Fortune magazine, 6/2/2021. For methodology, please see

2New York Life Investments” is both a service mark, and the common trade name, of certain investment advisors affiliated with New York Life Insurance Company.

3Assets under management consist of cash and invested assets and separate account assets of the company’s domestic and international insurance operations, and assets the company manages for third-party investors, including mutual funds, separately managed accounts, retirement plans and assets under administration. The company’s general account investment portfolio totaled $296.96 billion at December 31, 2021 (including $113.15 billion invested assets for NYLIAC and $8.10 billion invested assets for LINA). At December 31, 2021, total assets equaled $379.98 billion (including $183.13 billion total assets for NYLIAC and $9.00 billion total assets for LINA). Total liabilities, excluding the Asset Valuation Reserve (AVR), equaled $349.29 billion (including $171.52 billion total liabilities for NYLIAC and $7.25 billion total liabilities for LINA).

4NYLIM assets under management as of 12/31/2021.

5Individual independent rating agency commentary as of 9/30/2021: A.M. Best (A++), Fitch (AAA), Moody’s Investors Service (Aaa), Standard & Poor’s (AA+).

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Media contact

Kevin Maher
New York Life Insurance Company
(212) 576-7937

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