President’s Message Ken HoHmAn
A spirit of cooperation
THERE ARE FIvE u.S.-BASED mEmBERSHIP ORGAnIzATIOnS
for actuaries; each is distinguishable by mission and/or by type
and area of actuarial practice. Whether that’s a good or bad thing is a
subject for another time. What I am interested in discussing here is how
well these different organizations work together, particularly as they meet and
collaborate through the Academy and its Council of u.S. Presidents (CuSP).
Since 1991, the presidents and presidents-elect of the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries (more
recently, ASPPA’s College of Pension Actuaries), the Casualty
Actuarial Society, the Conference of Consulting Actuaries, and
the Society of Actuaries have served as special directors on the
Academy’s Board of Directors. CUSP, composed of these special
directors, facilitates communication and cooperation among the
five organizations through regular meetings (and almost constant
e-mail discussions). CUSP is also charged by the Academy board
with overseeing some of the Academy’s primary professional-ism-related duties. This includes making sure that the Actuarial
Board for Counseling and Discipline (ABCD) and the Actuarial
Standards Board are staffed with the highest-quality individuals
in our profession, that they have the resources they need to do
their respective jobs, and that they work as efficiently as possible.
The ABCD was created in 1992 and performs at a high level
in counseling members and investigating disciplinary matters.
When the ABCD is notified of a potential violation of the Code
of Professional Conduct, it investigates the matter and prepares
a detailed recommendation regarding punishment. Because actual discipline is handled by each organization according to its
separate bylaws, recommendations for discipline are sent to
each organization of which the subject actuary is a member.
While the organizations have slightly different rules, each
will convene a disciplinary panel that considers the evidence
provided by ABCD and hold a hearing with the subject actuary
(without the benefit of having the ABCD present). The subject
actuary can then request an appeal hearing.
This leads to a potential of 2n+ 1 hearings for the actuary, where
“n” is the number of actuarial organizations of which he or she is
a member (one hearing at the ABCD and possibly two hearings at
each organization). What’s more, each organization can arrive at a
different disciplinary action for a single offense.
Several years ago CUSP determined that while the ABCD’s
function may be efficient, the overall disciplinary process isn’t
(and having multiple outcomes for the same offense can be dif-
ficult to explain to those outside the profession). CUSP formed
a task force to review the matter and has now pre-
pared a recommendation that will be taken to the
boards of all five organizations. The proposal includes re-
placing separate disciplinary hearings at each organization with
a single hearing at which those with similar organizational mem-
berships as the subject actuary consider the case. The ABCD will
be available to the disciplinary panel to provide background and
insight into how similar cases have been handled in the past.