Oregon Insurance Commissioner Lou Savage is leaving the Insurance Division to work on legal reform in emerging democracies overseas after nearly two years at the post.

Laura Cali, the division’s chief actuary and manager of product regulation, will replace him. Savage was initially appointed as a temporary replacement to head the division, then agreed to serve in the permanent position a year ago.

The division hired Cali in mid-2011 as a casualty actuary specializing in workers’ compensation and medical malpractice. She was a consulting actuary for Towers Watson in San Francisco, and she started her career at Liberty Mutual’s home office in Boston, building rating models for workers’ compensation and general liability lines of business.

Savage and Cali said they are working together to ensure a smooth transition to new leadership and a consistent approach to insurance regulation, including rate review. Insurance companies recently filed proposed rates for small employer and individual health plans that take effect in 2014, include new benefits, and will be available to everyone regardless of health. The division will make rate decisions by the first week of July, a project Savage wanted to complete before leaving.

Savage will begin working on law projects in September. A former legal aid attorney, Savage will work with the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative in that area.

The Insurance Division has an annual budget of roughly $11 million and a staff of nearly 100. The Insurance Division is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s business regulatory and consumer protection agency.