Best of PSNC 2016


  • Anne Becker (Chicago)

    Partner, McDermott Will & Emery LLP,

    Anne S. Becker advises clients regarding a variety of employee benefits matters. She focuses her practice primarily on the design, amendment and administration of pension plans, 401(k) plans and nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements. Anne counsels privately and publicly held corporations in connection with employee benefits design and transition matters arising from corporate mergers, acquisitions and divestitures. She also advises clients regarding fiduciary and plan investment issues under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, including matters related to the holding of employer stock under 401(k) plans and employee stock ownership plans. Anne routinely represents clients in negotiations before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), US Department of Labor and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, including various applications to the IRS to maintain the tax-qualified status of retirement plans.Prior to joining McDermott, Anne served as a law clerk to the Honorable Sarah Evans Barker of the US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. While in law school, Anne was a note editor of the University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform.

  • Robert Boyda (San Francisco, Chicago, New York)

    Head of Global Asset Allocation and Senior Portfolio Manager, John Hancock Asset Management,

    Robert Boyda is head of Capital Markets and Strategy, co-head of the Portfolio Solutions Group’s (PSG) asset allocation team for North America and a senior portfolio manager at Manulife Asset Management. The Capital Markets and Strategy Group is responsible for Manulife’s secular and cyclical economic and capital market forward-looking views. PSG is responsible for the development and growth of Manulife’s asset allocation solutions for individual and institutional investors in the US, Canada, and Asia. Solutions include individual target date and target risk strategies, alternative and international asset allocation portfolios, and highly customized corporate pension plans. Bob is responsible for both economic and capital markets strategy as well as portfolio management of John Hancock’s Lifestyle and Lifecycle portfolios. Previously, Bob was senior vice president, investment management services, for John Hancock Financial, the US division of Manulife Financial Corp. In 1994 he originated what are now John Hancock’s Lifestyle funds and developed the framework for the IMS function responsible for sourcing, performing due diligence and replacing third party managers for John Hancock. Education: University of Western Ontario, Honours Bachelor of Arts Joined Company: 2010 Joined Manulife Financial: 1994 Began Investment Career: 1979

  • Drew Carrington (New York)

    Senior Vice President, Head of Institutional DCIO, Franklin Templeton Investments,

    Drew Carrington is a Senior Vice President, and leads Franklin Templeton’s defined contribution business within the U.S. institutional large market segment. His responsibilities include presenting the firm’s capabilities to existing and prospective DC clients and their consultants, as well as understanding and communicating the complex, evolving regulatory landscape of DC plans. Prior to joining Franklin Templeton in 2013, he served as head of the Defined Contribution and Retirement Solutions Group at UBS Global Asset Management, focused on developing investment solutions for large DC plans, particularly in the target date and retirement income categories. He joined UBS in 2005, as a senior fixed income client portfolio manager for UBS, where he worked closely with their Asset-Liability Investment Solutions team to design and implement the fixed income and duration overlay portions of asset-liability management strategies. Before joining UBS, he was a principal at Mercer Investment Consulting, where he worked with both public and private DB and DC clients. He began his career in the financial services industry in 1988. Mr. Carrington is former chair of the Retirement Income Committee and current member of the Retirement Research Board of the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA), a nonprofit association dedicated to enhancing the retirement security of American workers. He is a frequent speaker at DC industry conferences on retirement income, diversification opportunities and risk mitigation. Mr. Carrington holds Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) designations, is Series 7 and 63 licensed and holds a bachelor of arts from Harvard University.

  • Emily Costin (New York)

    Senior Associate, ALSTON & BIRD, LLP,

    Emily Seymour Costin is a senior associate in the Washington, D.C. office, where she focuses her practice on the defense of employment and employee benefits disputes and counseling employers, plan sponsors and fiduciaries on litigation avoidance strategies. Emily represents plan sponsors, insurers and fiduciaries in litigation over claims for benefits and breach of fiduciary duty under ERISA. She has experience litigating various types of ERISA disputes, including those involving 401(k)/employer stock, employee stock ownership plans (ESOP), benefit termination, investment/fee matters and individual benefit claims. She has represented clients in connection with government investigations for civil and criminal violations of ERISA. Emily also has extensive experience handling all types of employment litigation, including claims for discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination and wage/hour issues. She frequently counsels employers on personnel and employee benefits issues under both state and federal law. Emily is the chair of the ABA TIPS Employee Benefits Committee and a member of the ABA’s Joint Committee on Employee Benefits (JCEB). She is also a member of the editorial advisory board of the Benefits Law Journal. Emily was selected to the 2014 and 2015 Washington, DC Super Lawyers Rising Stars lists. She graduated with high honors from George Washington University Law School, where she was a member of the Order of the Coif.

  • Michael Doshier (San Francisco)

    Vice President, Retirement Marketing, Franklin Templeton Investments,

    Michael Doshier currently serves as the global head of marketing for the Retirement & College Savings products for Franklin Templeton investments. In his current role, Michael is responsible for the overall marketing strategy for the DCIO, retail retirement and 529 businesses. Michael Doshier previously served as vice president of Advisor Marketing in the Retirement Services division of MassMutual Financial Group. Michael was responsible for the overall customer experience for the advisor and plan sponsor customer segments. He also had responsibility for integrated marketing and competitive intelligence for the firm’s defined contribution & defined benefit businesess. Michael has served in the financial services industry for more than 25 years. During his career Mr. Doshier has held several leadership positions, including leading Fidelity Investments Tax-Exempt market segment to record growth and market share, management of national call centers, as well as management of various service delivery functions, relationship management, and total benefits outsourcing operations. Michael is a frequent speaker at industry events and government meetings on key issues affecting the defined contribution and global retirement industry. Michael received a bachelor of arts degree from Xavier University and has earned his FINRA Series 63, 7, 8, and 26 registrations. Michael lives in the Northern California Sierra foothills with his wife and three children. He is an avid traveler and outdoor sports enthusiast.

  • Phil Fiore, Jr. (New York)

    Senior Retirement Plan Consultant, Senior Vice President, The FDG Group – UBS Financial Services,

    Phil has over 20 years of experience in the institutional retirement arena. The FDG Group, which was founded by Phil in 1997, was recognized by PlanSponsor magazine as their “2011 Retirement Plan Advisory Team of the Year” and most recently by Barron’s Magazine as one of the “Top 30 Institutional Consulting Teams” in 2016 and 2015. The team has also been named one of “The Country’s Most Successful Retirement Plan Advisory Teams” from 2008 through 2014. Phil was also recognized by 401KWire as one of the Nation’s 300 Most Influential Advisors in the Defined Contribution Arena in 2010 and 2011, by the Financial Times as one of their Top 400 US Advisors of 2014 and as one of Barron’s Top 1,200 Financial Advisors in 2015. As a member of the select UBS Institutional Consulting Group, a Senior Institutional Consultant and a Senior Retirement Plan Consultant, he serves the retirement needs of a variety of cities, unions, non-profits, and corporations. Phil is a member of the UBS Institutional Consulting Group Advisory Council, which helps identify the strategic direction and ongoing enhancements for the program. He also served as Co-Chair of the Corporate Development Advisory Board at UBS from 2011 – 2013, and is currently Co-Chair of the UBS Retirement Advisory Council. Phil is also a member of the Columbus Citizens Foundation in New York City; a founding member of the Associate Development Board for Western Connecticut Health Network (WCHN); and currently sits on the on the WCHN Development Fund Board, its governance committee and on the Danbury Health System’s Board of Directors. Phil graduated from the University of Hartford with a B.A. degree, and later earned the designation of Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA®) through the Wharton School of Business. He has also earned designation as a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC®) through the College for Financial PlanningSM. Through the Center for Fiduciary Studies at the Katz Graduate School of Business, University of Pittsburgh, Phil achieved the Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®) designation. Additionally, Phil is a member of the Retirement Advisor Council, an independent group that advocates for successful qualified plan and participant retirement outcomes through collaborative efforts of experienced industry professionals. Phil is a member of both Secession Golf Club and Trump National Golf Club, and in addition to playing golf, enjoys boating and taekwondo. He currently resides in Bridgewater with his wife, Jill, their two sons, Michael and Dylan, and their Rottweiler Romeo.

  • L. Rita Fiumara (Chicago)

    Senior Vice President– Investments, Senior Retirement Plan Consultant, UBS Financial Services,

    In an evolving retirement plan landscape, plan sponsors need advice and guidance more than ever. Rita understands both the incentive value of a retirement plan and the commitment required to administer the plan and address fiduciary responsibilities. Investment reviews, daily plan administration and participant support and education can be overwhelming. With the extensive resources of UBS, combined with the specialized retirement plan expertise, perspective and insights she brings to the table, Rita can help you create a stronger plan that gives your employees greater confidence in their retirement and their future. Since 1996, Rita has helped empower retirement plan sponsors with insight and best practices to meet their fiduciary responsibilities while supporting employees’ retirement planning goals. As an Institutional Retirement Consultant, Rita considers herself an educator as well as an advocate. By integrating plan feature consulting with employee education, she has helped sponsors build effective communication programs that have driven overall plan participation. Rita also advises her clients on competitive cost structures, investment committee priorities and decision-making, and organizing key fiduciary documents. Outside of UBS, Rita is an active spokesperson in her professional community. She is often a featured guest speaker on a range of ERISA topics at various industry conferences and other events, including those for the Chicago Bar Association, Financial Executives International (FEI), the SPARKS conference in Washington, DC; PLANSPONSOR conference in Chicago and for the CPA Society.

  • Ben Grosz (New York)

    Tax & ERISA Attorney, Ivins, Phillips & Barker,

    Ben Grosz is an attorney with Ivins, Phillips & Barker, where he advises clients on a broad range of employee benefits issues and federal tax planning matters, with particular focus on counseling employers and fiduciaries about their 401(k) and other tax-qualified plans. He regularly advises clients regarding their fiduciary duties and handles day-to-day compliance issues, such as trouble-shooting when glitches arise in plan operations, implementation of new laws and regulations, and helping qualified plan committees monitor plan investments and plan vendors. He has handled a variety of benefits issues that arise in transactions, negotiated investor management agreements and other benefits vendor service agreements (e.g., recordkeeping, consulting, and trustee), and represents clients before government agencies such as the IRS and DOL. Ben has extensive experience drafting plan documents, amendments, fiduciary committee meeting minutes, summary plan descriptions and other participant communications. He has been retained as outside legal counsel to implement many investment manager and fund changes (including mutual funds, collective investment trusts, separately managed accounts, and private funds); to assist with the implementation of de-risking initiatives and plan redesigns; to establish numerous brand new qualified retirement plans (including defined benefit and cash balance pension plans, as well as 401(k) plans with ESOPs) in connection with a complex transaction; to advise on executive employment agreements and tax matters; and to oversee and manage fee disclosure due diligence and reporting processes. Ben works with large and small clients on their benefit programs and routinely handles day-to-day administrative questions for all types of plans. Recent employee benefits clients include Boeing, IBM, PSEG, Xerox, the U.S. Golf Association, SABIC, and the Smithsonian Institution. Before law school, Ben started his own financial planning business. Prior to that he was a business manager at Capital One. His business experiences help him understand the needs of clients ranging from entrepreneurs to large corporations. Ben earned his B.A. from the University of Virginia (magna cum laude and elected Phi Beta Kappa), an Executive Certificate from Georgetown University, and his J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law. He has been frequently quoted in national publications and the trade press on benefits and tax matters (including Forbes, US News & World Report, CNBC, Family Office Monthly, and Fiduciary News), and he has spoken to the American Bar Association, the D.C. Bar, and the Tax Executives Institute.

  • Samuel Henson (Chicago, San Francisco)

    VP – Director of Legal & Regulatory Affairs, Lockton Retirement Services,

    Sam serves as VP – Director of Legal & Regulatory Affairs for Lockton Retirement Services. In his daily role, Sam oversees ERISA compliance, DOL/IRS activities, and the legislative landscape for more than 48,000 Lockton clients and 5,600 associates. Prior to joining Lockton, Sam spent almost 10 years with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration, where he conducted more than 150 civil and criminal investigations of employee benefits plans, service providers, and fiduciaries. Sam also supervised enforcement efforts for benefit plans funded by prevailing wage laws under the Service Contract Act and Davis-Bacon Act. He is the 2011 recipient of the Secretary of Labor’s Exception Achievement Award. Sam serves on the Policy Board of the American Benefits Council, Governing Council of ISCEBS, the Board of Directors of DCIIA, and is a member of the American Bar and ASPPA. Sam has been a nationally featured speaker and author on numerous fiduciary topics. Sam earned his Juris Doctorate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law and holds CEBS – Fellow, RPA, GBA, and ASPPA – APM designations.

  • Stace Hilbrant (Chicago)

    Managing Director, 401k Advisors, LLC,

    Stace Hilbrant, recently named Plansponsor’s 2012 Retirement Plan Advisor of the Year, is Managing Director and Founder of Chicago-based 401k Advisors, LLC. Since2001, Hilbrant and his associates have assisted plan sponsors of 401k plans of all sizes. The firm represents small to mid-sized companies from manufacturers to printing companies and professional sports teams to firms engaged in the automotive and aerospace industries and has over $1.2 billion in assets under management. Stace has been in the financial industry for more than 30 years, including 20 years with one of the 401k industry leading service providers. Stace, is a Registered Investment Advisor and holds Series 6, 63, 7, 24 and Series 65 designations. He is also an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIFÔ), a Plansponsor Retirement Professional, a Certified Behavioral Analyst and a Registered Fiduciary (DALBAR). Stace’s expertise ranges from employee education and investment due diligence/asset allocation to vendor reviews /cost management and fiduciary liability management. Stace has been involved with the Chicago Chapter of the America Heart Association and recently served as the Chairman of the Board of the Hadley School of the Blind in Winnetka, Illinois. He also serves on a local foundation that provides educational assistance to young people desiring secondary educational support who are “funding challenged.” Stace is married and has six children.

  • R. Bradford Huss (San Francisco)

    Director, Trucker Huss APC,

    Brad Huss is a Director of the San Francisco law firm of Trucker Huss, A Professional Corporation, which practices exclusively in the fields of ERISA and employee benefits. Mr. Huss concentrates his practice on ERISA litigation, fiduciary responsibility matters, Department of Labor investigations and qualified pension and profit sharing plans. Mr. Huss has spoken numerous times throughout the country on qualified plan and fiduciary responsibility matters and has testified before the United States Senate Finance Committee concerning retirement security issues. Mr. Huss received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley and his Juris Doctor degree from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley. Mr. Huss is a Charter Fellow and former member of the Board of Governors of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel. Mr. Huss is a past member of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries, a former chair of the Employee Benefits Committee of the Section of Tort Trial and Insurance Practice of the American Bar Association and a past President of the San Francisco Chapter of the Western Pension & Benefits Council.

  • Kristina Keck (San Francisco)

    Vice President, Retirement Plan Services, Woodruff-Sawyer & Co.,

    Kristina helps lead Woodruff-Sawyer’s Retirement Plan Practice (WS&Co. RPS). She has more than 20 years of experience in the corporate pension and the investment industry and as an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF©), she can serve as a co-fiduciary on the retirement programs she services. Kristina is responsible for ensuring that plan goals are met and that clients are kept abreast of new and creative strategies. She has been recognized as one of the National Association of Plan Advisors (NAPA) Top Female Retirement Advisors and San Francisco Magazines Five Star Wealth Managers. After spending seven years in the U S Air Force, Kristina began her career in financial services at Northwestern Mutual Life in 1993 and her work experience includes positions at Northwestern Mutual Life, Associated Securities Corp. Prior to joining Woodruff Sawyer in 2012, she was a partner at ClearPoint Financial. Kristina has served in the Air National Guard, retiring in July 2015 as a Chief Master Sergeant.

  • Eric Milano (Chicago)

    Regional Sales Consultant, DCIO, T. Rowe Price,

    Eric’s strong communications skills, along with his deep financial experience, have helped him provide value to his clients as a Regional Sales Consultant in the USIS Financial Institutions Group at T. Rowe Price, where he oversees the Upper Midwest region. Eric’s mission is to help a diverse group of financial professionals elevate their businesses to higher levels. He is focused on helping advisors, brokers, and recordkeepers add value to their clients’ investment strategies. Eric currently resides in Glen Ellyn, Illinois with his wife Suzanne and their two children Kayla and Dylan. In his spare time, Eric enjoys coaching youth sports and is an active member of the Glen Ellyn Youth Athletics Program.

  • Sean Murray (San Francisco, Chicago)

    Head of Advisor Sold and Platform Distribution, BlackRock US & Canada Defined Contribution,

    Sean Murray, CFA, Managing Director, is head of BlackRock’s Advisor Sold and Platform Distribution Team for the US Defined Contribution Group within the Global Retail and iShares businesses. Prior to joining BlackRock in 2015, he was the National Sales Manager for PIMCO’s Defined Contribution Investment Only Team from 2011-2015. Mr. Murray held a similar role within Goldman Sachs’ retirement services group, where he spent 10 years. Previously he was a regional representative and a national accounts manager at Delaware Capital Management. Mr. Murray began his career at Fidelity Investments Institutional Services in 1994. Mr. Murray holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania and has achieved the CFA designation.

  • Nick Nefouse (New York)

    Head of Investment & Product Strategy, BlackRock US & Canada Defined Contribution,

    Nick Nefouse, CFA, Managing Director, is a member of the US & Canada Defined Contribution Group. He is the Co-Head of the LifePath franchise and head of the DC Investment Strategy team. Mr Nefouse has spent the majority of his career in product strategy roles where he was responsible for developing strategic product plans and the positioning of products both internally and externally. These roles included the Lead Product Strategist for the Global Emerging Markets team, the Senior Investment Strategist in the Alpha Strategies group, the Lead Product Strategist on the London-based Global Equity team and a Product Specialist for the BlackRock Global Allocation team. Mr. Nefouse’s service with the firm dates back to 2003, including his years with Merrill Lynch Investment Managers, which merged with BlackRock in 2006. At MLIM, he worked as a product specialist and began his career on the US Retail sales desk in Princeton, NJ. Mr. Nefouse earned a BA degree in economics from Michigan State University in 2003 and is a board member on the Financial Markets Institute at Michigan State University. He is a CFA Charter Holder.

  • Blake Thibault (San Francisco)

    Managing Director, Heffernan Group,

    Blake Thibault serves as one of the Principals of Heffernan Retirement Services. Mr. Thibault is a member of the Firm’s Investment Policy Committee, the Corporate Retirement Review Committee and has direct relationship responsibility for a number of the Firm’s clients. Previous to Heffernan, Mr. Thibault was associated with Morgan Stanley as a Wealth Advisor and Retirement Planning Specialist. At Morgan Stanley, Mr. Thibault advised individuals, corporations and non-profit organizations. At Heffernan, Mr. Thibault holds responsibility for assisting our corporate clients with plan and vendor evaluations, contract negotiations, implementation initiatives, investment selection and monitoring, comprehensive plan reviews and education strategies for plan sponsors and participants.
    Mr. Thibault and his team were recently recognized as a semi-finalist for NAPA’s 2013 401(k) Advisor Leadership Award, recognizing leadership, innovation, and contributions to the retirement plan industry with the sales, marketing and establishment of 401(k) plans. In 2007, Mr. Thibault was recognized by Institutional Investor Magazine1 as one of the top twenty Retirement Plan Advisors Rising Stars. Mr. Thibault and his team have been recognized by Plan Advisor Magazine2 as one of the top 100 Advisor Teams nationally every year since 2008.
    Mr. Thibault is very active in the retirement community serving on several Defined Contribution Advisory Boards, including Fidelity, ING (Voya), LPL and PIMCO. Mr. Thibault currently serves on the Government Affairs Committee for the National Association of Plan Advisors. He is also a member of The American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries. Mr. Thibault holds a series 7, 66 and 31 licenses and is an Accredited Investment Fiduciary, AIF.
    ¹ Nominated by industry peers and selected based on attributes including credentials, experience and a career consistency indicative of future industry leadership potential.
    ² Nominated by industry professionals and selected based on quantitative evaluation of service levels and feedback from plan sponsor clients. Advisors who have attained the PLANSPONSOR Retirement Professional Designation receive an automatic nomination.

  • Brad Vaughan (San Francisco)

    Regional Sales Consultant, DCIO, T. Rowe Price,

    Brad’s strong communications skills, along with his deep financial experience, have helped him provide value to his clients as a Regional Sales Consultant in the USIS Financial Institutions Group at T. Rowe Price, where he oversees the Pacific Northwest region. Brad’s mission is to help a diverse group of financial professionals elevate their businesses to higher levels. He is focused on helping advisors, brokers, and recordkeepers add value to their clients’ investment strategies. Brad currently resides in Seattle, Washington. He enjoys golf, travel and following his children’s activities.

  • Tom Waters (Chicago)

    Senior DCIO Institutional Strategist, Franklin Templeton Investments,

    Tom Waters oversees Franklin Templeton’s defined contribution investment only (DCIO) business segment within the U.S. institutional market, focusing on the East Coast. Mr. Waters works with existing and prospective plan sponsor clients to help their participants achieve a secure retirement through education and by aiding in the development of DC-focused solutions. Prior to joining Franklin Templeton, Mr. Waters was the Defined Contribution Practice Leader at Manning & Napier. In this role, he led sales, marketing, and strategy for the Institutional Defined Contribution Investment Only business. Prior to his time at Manning & Napier, Mr. Waters was a Defined Contribution Client Advisor at J.P. Morgan Asset Management in Chicago. In this role, he worked extensively with large and mega plan sponsor clients and prospects, focused on providing insight on the DC industry and working with sponsors, clients and advisors to provide targeted solutions for DC plans. Mr. Waters is a member of the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association, serving as a member of the Investment Policy Committee, a nonprofit association dedicated to enhancing the retirement security of American workers. He is a speaker at industry conferences on a variety of DC related topics. Mr. Waters has a degree in Economics from St. Lawrence University and an MBA from the Johnson School of Business at Cornell University.

  • Jon Wilkinson (New York)

    Regional Sales Consultant, DCIO, T. Rowe Price,

    Jonathan’s strong communications skills, along with his deep financial experience, have helped him provide value to his clients as a Regional Sales Consultant in the USIS Financial Institutions Group at T. Rowe Price, where he oversees the Metro region. Jonathan’s mission is to help a diverse group of financial professionals elevate their businesses to higher levels. He is focused on helping advisors, brokers, and recordkeepers add value to their clients’ investment strategies. Jonathan currently resides in New Jersey with his wife and three daughters.

  • Emily Wrightson (New York)

    Consultant, Cammack Retirement Group,

    As a Consultant on Cammack Retirement’s Public Markets team, Emily leads a group of associates and analysts in servicing the retirement plan needs of several public, higher education, healthcare and non-profit organizations. Emily is experienced in conducting request for proposals, vendor implementations as well as working to ensure the successful delivery of vendor services including fund array changes, outsourcing and participant communication and education. Additionally, she partners with clients in all aspects of the due diligence process, including investment analysis, plan design, compliance, regulatory, and process changes. Emily has over 9 years of experience in providing defined contribution plan consulting and client management service at Cammack Retirement Group. Throughout her entire working career, she has been involved with providing mutual fund and stable value analysis and advice. Previously, she served as an account manager in the firm’s retirement practice. Emily received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Richmond.

Sponsorship Information

Katie Bacon | 203-595-3184 |

General Information

Carol Popkins | 203-461-0985 |