WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez today announced the appointment of five new members to the 2015 Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans — also known as the ERISA Advisory Council. He also announced the incoming chair and vice chair of the council.
"Protecting workers' benefits is a priority for the ERISA Advisory Council and the department," said Secretary Perez. "These new members bring invaluable skills and experiences to the council, and will provide guidance and support to further the council's critical mission."
The 15-member council provides advice on policies and regulations affecting employee benefit plans governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. By law, members of the council serve for staggered three-year terms. Three members are representatives of employee organizations, at least one of whom represents an organization whose members are participants in a multiemployer plan. Three members are representatives of employers, at least one of whom represents employers maintaining or contributing to multiemployer plans. Three members are representatives of the general public. There is one representative each from the fields of insurance, corporate trust, actuarial counseling, investment counseling, investment management and accounting.
Secunda is Professor of Law and Director of the Labor and Employment Law Program at Marquette University Law School in Milwaukee, Wis. He previously practiced labor law in Philadelphia and was chair of the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Section of the Association of American Law Schools.
Schmidtke is a shareholder with the law firm Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart P.C. in Valparaiso, Ind. He represents insurers in litigation of life, health and disability insurance matters and on employee benefit plans, and advises them on issues related to ERISA. He is a fellow in the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel.
The newly appointed members and the expertise they represent are:
General public: Elizabeth Ysla Leight is director of government relations and legal affairs at the Society of Professional Benefit Administrators in Chevy Chase, Md. She writes and conducts training workshops on employee benefits compliance and regulatory policy on employee benefits. She serves in the leadership of the American Bar Association's Welfare Benefits Committee.
Employee organizations: Jeffrey G. Stein is general counsel to 22 Taft-Hartley funds and related organizations serving over 400,000 members of 1199SEIU United Health Care Workers East, in New York City. The self-insured and self-administered funds include three multiemployer defined benefit pension funds, the largest of which has $9.5 billion in assets. The welfare funds are responsible for providing close to $2 billion dollars annually in hospital, medical and other welfare benefits.
Corporate Trust: Jennifer Kamp Tretheway of Chicago recently retired after 39 years as a trust company executive with Northern Trust. Most recently, she served as senior vice president and managing director of investment program solutions. Tretheway managed client service for institutional tax exempt clients and has experience with outsourcing, overseeing other managers, developing emerging/minority managers, and supervising compliance with ERISA regulatory issues.
Employers: Deborah A. Tully is the senior director of compensation and benefits finance and accounting analysis at Raytheon Co. in Waltham, Mass. She manages the accounting funding and forward pricing for Raytheon's benefit plans, including pensions, medical, stock compensation, workers compensation, disability and life insurance. She is a fellow of the Society of Actuaries and an enrolled actuary.
Investment Management: Rennie Worsfold is a vice president at Financial Engines in Boston, and has been with the company for 15 years. He oversees distribution of participant advisory services for defined contribution plans to employers, plan providers and financial institutions. He has been involved in developing new products and services and has led client service professionals responsible for servicing and supporting some of the company's largest plan sponsor clients.
For more information about the ERISA Advisory Council, visit http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/aboutebsa/erisa_advisory_council.html.