Professionalism News and Events

In a four-part series in Contingencies, Academy President Tom Wildsmith examines the infrastructure of actuarial professionalism and how the Academy is instrumental in supporting that infrastructure and the U.S. actuarial profession. Wildsmith terms this infrastructure a “web of professionalism,” and the series explores how the Academy developed these foundational documents and bodies to provide the professionalism framework for the profession:
  1. The Code of Professional Conduct binds Academy members to the highest standards of conduct, recognizing that all members have a moral responsibility to all the many people who may depend on their work.
  2. The U.S. Qualification Standards provide actuaries with the guidance needed to meet the ethical obligation to practice competently and responsibly.
  3. Through the Actuarial Standards Board, the Academy has promulgated 50 actuarial standards of practice covering all areas of actuarial practice.
  4. Through the Actuarial Board for Counseling and Discipline, the Academy provides the basic disciplinary framework for the profession.
“The Academy was founded so that the U.S. actuarial profession could earn the public’s trust,” Wildsmith writes. “Our primary mission is to ensure that U.S. actuaries—both individually and collectively—provide the public with the professionalism it deserves.”

The series was redesigned as a standalone publication. Read it here.  (April 27, 2017)
It’s time once again to nominate a deserving colleague or respected mentor for one of the Academy’s prestigious annual awards, either for public service or for a lifetime of service to the actuarial profession and the Academy, as described below.
  • The Robert J. Myers Public Service Award honors an actuary who made an exceptional contribution to the common good, specifically through a single noteworthy public service achievement or a career devoted to public service.
     
  • The Jarvis Farley Service Award is a lifetime achievement award presented to an actuary whose volunteer efforts on behalf of the Academy have made significant contributions to the advancement of the profession through a lifetime of service.
     
  • The Outstanding Volunteerism Award honors Academy volunteers who have made a single, noteworthy volunteerism contribution in the past year.

The deadline for nominations is June 30, and the awards will be presented at the Academy’s Annual Meeting and Public Policy Forum Nov. 14–15 in Washington.
(April 25, 2017)
Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) Vice Chairperson Frank Todisco writes about Actuarial Standard of Practice (ASOP) No. 32, Social Insurance, which is currently undergoing revision. The ASB created a task force last year to examine ASOP No. 32—which does not fall into any one particular practice area—that met in January and plans to issue a summary of changes and a full exposure draft later this year. (March 31, 2017)
The Actuarial Standards Board’s (ASB) 2016 Annual Report is now available. The report highlights the ASB’s accomplishments in 2016, including adoption of three revised actuarial standards of practice (ASOPs), approval of seven exposure drafts for comment, approval of a proposal for one revised ASOP, and a final report from the ASB’s Pension Task Force. The ASB also approved the formation of a task force to revise ASOP No. 32, Social Insurance. (March 22, 2017)
The Actuarial Board for Counseling and Discipline’s (ABCD) 2016 Annual Report is now available. The report highlights the ABCD’s accomplishments in 2016. The ABCD handled 141 cases, comprised of 108 requests for guidance (RFGs) and 33 inquiries. It provided guidance in response to the 108 RFGs, which broke the record for most in a year that had been set in 2015, and closed 14 inquiry cases. 
(March 22, 2017)
Using a timely baseball opening analogy to his first Presidential Papers column, Academy President Bob Beuerlein asks, “Are You Modeling Professionalism?” He notes that actuaries have the opportunity to be teachers and role models to other actuaries, and cites the importance of the Code of Professional Conduct. “Walk the walk,” he writes, and don’t be afraid to ask for advice. (Contingencies, March/April 2017) (March 01, 2017)
How are actuarial standards of practice (ASOPs) revised and kept current? Beth Fitzgerald, vice chairperson of the Actuarial Standards Board (ASB), explains the 2016 revisions to ASOP Nos. 21, 23, and 24, illustrating how the ASB continues to uphold this charge—seeking and receiving a wide range of ideas and viewpoints within the actuarial profession. (February 28, 2017)
Keith Passwater, chairperson of the Academy’s Committee on Qualifications, outlined three new FAQs about the Qualification Standards for Actuaries Issuing Statements of Actuarial Opinion in the United States on long-term care qualifications, actuaries changing practice areas, and experience under the specific qualification standard. The FAQs are a handy resource that actuaries can consult when they have questions about qualifications.
(January 31, 2017)
Academy volunteers—and individuals who are an interested party on a committee, whether an Academy member or not—must annually acknowledge the Academy’s Conflict of Interest (COI) policy, Vice President of Professionalism Joeff Williams writes in his January Actuarial Update column.
(January 31, 2017)
In the fourth and final installment of his presidential papers series “The Academy and the Web of Professionalism,” Past Academy President Tom Wildsmith writes about discipline, tracing the Academy’s early efforts in this area that led to the founding of the Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) and the Actuarial Board for Counseling and Discipline (ABCD). The ABCD, along with the ASB and the U.S. Qualification Standards, form the triad of the Code of Professional Conduct. “Dealing with disciplinary matters is never pleasant, but it is an essential part of any self-regulating profession,” he writes. (Contingencies, January/February 2017) (January 01, 2017)