American Academy of Actuaries Recognizes Members’ Service to the Public and Profession
WASHINGTON—The American Academy of Actuaries recognized several of its most dedicated members for their service to the public, the U.S. actuarial profession, and the Academy with awards presented at its Annual Meeting and Public Policy Forum on Nov. 5-6 in Washington, D.C. They include recipients of the Academy’s two most prestigious awards, the Jarvis Farley Service Award and the Robert J. Myers Public Service Award, and four recipients of the Academy’s 2019 Outstanding Volunteerism Awards.
Mary D. Miller of Mansfield, Ohio, received the 2019 Jarvis Farley Service Award, which honors an actuary whose volunteer efforts on behalf of the Academy have made significant contributions to the advancement of the profession. The Academy established the Jarvis Farley Service Award in 1991 to honor one of its most dedicated volunteers, Jarvis Farley, a charter member of the Academy and an invaluable resource for the profession.
Miller received the award for her recent accomplishments and service to the Academy, including tireless efforts on behalf of the Academy as its representative to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), especially regarding the NAIC’s efforts related to the definition of qualified/appointed actuary and on actuarial professionalism. Her long and distinguished record of Academy volunteerism spans more than two decades and 35 service positions, including serving as 2014–15 Academy president. She currently serves as a member of the Actuarial Board for Counseling and Discipline.
“Mary’s continued volunteer service has contributed to strategically fulfilling the Academy's mission, positioning the Academy for success in the present and well into the future,” said Academy 2018-19 President Shawna Ackerman. “Few volunteers have touched so many different aspects of the Academy's work, and our profession, so profoundly.”
Carolyn Zimmerman of Pittsburgh received the 2019 Robert J. Myers Public Service Award, which was established in 1994 by the Academy’s Committee on Actuarial Public Service to honor an actuary for a single noteworthy public service achievement or a career devoted to public service. The award is named after Robert J. Myers, chief actuary for the Social Security Administration from 1947 to 1970, to honor his lifelong commitment to public service.
Zimmerman has made exceptional efforts to have sound guidance issued that informs pension actuaries and protects pension benefits and beneficiaries. She is a member of the Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries and has been an active Academy volunteer for over 20 years.
“Carol’s service has been defined by an unfailing eagerness and willingness to share her vast knowledge,” said Ackerman. “Her peers have praised her commitment to work benefiting the public, improving the regulatory environment, and providing members of the actuarial profession with timely and useful information.”
Four Academy volunteers—Ralph S. Blanchard III of East Granby, Conn.; Seong-min Eom of Ewing, N.J.; Allan Kaufman of New York City; and Linda Lankowski of Hartford, Conn.—were recognized with the Academy’s 2019 Outstanding Volunteerism Awards. The awards honor Academy volunteers who have made noteworthy volunteerism contributions in the past year.
As chairperson of the Academy’s Current Estimate Credit Losses Work Group, Blanchard led efforts to develop a white paper describing the new Financial Accounting Standards Board accounting requirement regarding uncollectible reinsurance reserves that will take effect next year. He has also been a key contributor to the NAIC’s work regarding loss portfolio transfers and other property/casualty issues.
Under Eom’s leadership as chairperson, the Academy’s ERM/ORSA Committee’s Model Risk Management Work Group authored a public policy practice note on model risk management. Eom also delivered presentations on behalf of the Academy at this year’s ERM Symposium.
Kaufman made invaluable contributions to the Academy’s work on property/casualty risk-based capital issues, including spearheading the initiative to provide research to the NAIC’s P/C RBC Working Group regarding enhancements to underwriting risk factor components.
Lankowski has been pivotal to the Academy’s efforts to provide feedback to regulators, and education and information to actuaries, on principle-based reserving (PBR) in the lead-up to full implementation of PBR in January 2020. She participated in NAIC calls and at national meetings regarding PBR issues, on the Academy’s PBR Boot Camp faculty, as chairperson of the PBR Strategy Subgroup, and as an active member of the PBR Governance Work Group while serving as vice chairperson of the Life Practice Council.
“Service is at the heart of the Academy’s mission,” said Ackerman. “We are fortunate to benefit from the skill, dedication, and hard work of our volunteers.” Learn more at actuary.org/awards.
The American Academy of Actuaries is a 19,500-member professional association whose mission is to serve the public and the U.S. actuarial profession. For more than 50 years, the Academy has assisted public policymakers on all levels by providing leadership, objective expertise, and actuarial advice on risk and financial security issues. The Academy also sets qualification, practice, and professionalism standards for actuaries in the United States.