steve

Steve Altishin JD


Director, Employee Benefits

I come from a family of first generation Italian immigrants. We’re big talkers. My Dad sold TV sets for Meier & Frank and my mom ran the PTA.  My instinct still tells me to pick up the phone and call someone instead of sending an email. It’s just the way I was raised.

This fits perfectly with my work here at Heestand Company, where I’m lucky enough to put into use my four favorite skills: problem solving, research, technical writing, and, of course, communication.  As the primary service contact for all health and welfare client relationships, I work directly alongside our clients to help administer their benefits programs.

Before joining Heestand I managed bond claims and was a grant writer for a large non-profit agency.  Prior to that I practiced law.  I have learned to deal with bureaucracy in a non-bureaucratic way. I truly like to read arcane, legalistic, difficult information (I’ve read the entire 2,400 pages of the Affordable Care Act), and turn it into real-life solutions. That’s what makes me good at my job. I’m interested in leaving you better off than you were, not giving you a sales pitch.

When I’m not at work, I love to cook.  I also love to eat and thoroughly enjoy exploring the ever changing Portland food scene.  As a hobby, I’ve been making Pinot Noir wine for 11 years, and we just bottled our 2013 vintage – it looks to be a good one.  I was born and raised in Portland and I never left: Sunset High School, Portland State University, Lewis and Clark Northwestern School of Law.  My wife and I met in law school and you’ll often find us together on a variety of volunteer projects. Both of our children work in the arts.  No surprise there, like I said, we’re a family of talkers.

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