Family Finances

The 2021 Aspen Leadership Forum on Retirement Savings: Making Retirement Savings Part of an Equitable Recovery

Event information
Date
Thu Apr 15, 2021
10:30am - 2:30pm EDT
Location
Virtual
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On April 15, 2021, the Aspen Leadership Forum on Retirement Savings is kicking off its fifth convening with a free, public dialogue on how retirement savings must be part of an equitable recovery from COVID-19. We invite policymakers, the private sector (record keepers, asset managers, plan sponsors, consultants, fintech), academia, nonprofits, and advocates to join us in a dialogue designed to accelerate the development of a truly inclusive savings system.

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Attendees will receive:

  • New insights from a nationally representative survey by the Aspen Institute Financial Security Program, DCIIA Retirement Research Center, Morningstar, and NORC at the University of Chicago on how Americans relied on retirement savings, emergency savings, and debt strategies to cope with income loss during 2020
  • Results of an anonymous “Expert Survey” of over 100 retirement leaders, fielded by the Aspen Institute Financial Security Program, gauging what diverse retirement leaders think about how our retirement savings system should evolve
  • Perspectives from key leaders and innovative thinkers working to help all Americans access and reap the benefits of retirement savings tools
Speakers:
  • The Honorable Richard E. Neal, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee
  • The Honorable Sarah Godlewski, Wisconsin State Treasurer
  • Fiona Greig, PhD, Managing Director and Co-President, JPMorgan Chase Institute
  • Kunal Kapoor, CEO, Morningstar
  • Elizabeth Kelly, SVP of Growth, United Income from Capital One
  • Kilolo Kijakazi, PhD, Deputy Commissioner of the Office of Retirement and Disability Policy, Social Security Administration
  • Ida Rademacher, Vice President, The Aspen Institute and Executive Director, The Aspen  Institute Financial Security Program 
  • Catherine Reilly, Director of Retirement Solutions, Smart USA
  • Nari Rhee, PhD, Director of Retirement Security Program, UC Berkeley Labor Center
  • Debra Whitman, PhD, Executive Vice President and Chief Public Policy Officer, AARP

Emcees: 

  • Karen Biddle Andres, Director of Policy and Market Solutions and Project Director of the Retirement Savings Initiative, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program
  • Tim Shaw, Associate Director of Policy, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program
Agenda – All times listed in Eastern Time Zone

10:30 am — Welcome and Opening Remarks

  •  Karen Biddle Andres, Director of Policy and Market Solutions and Project Director of the Retirement Savings Initiative, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program  

10:35 am — The Halfway Point of a Ten-Year Dialogue: Progress Made and the Work Ahead for the Aspen Leadership Forum on Retirement Savings

  • Ida Rademacher, Vice President, The Aspen Institute and Executive Director, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program
  • Debra Whitman, PhD, Executive Vice President and Chief Public Policy Officer, AARP

10:55 am — What 2020 Revealed About Retirement Savings in America — and What Should Come Next

A diverse group of leaders explores what’s known about who has retirement savings in America, and why; how retirement savings are both an indicator of financial well-being and a contributor to it; what the full picture of post-COVID financial life tells us about the retirement savings system we really need; and how retirement savings fits in a broader set of tools we might use to equitably build wealth in America.

  • The Honorable Sarah Godlewski, Wisconsin State Treasurer
  • Kunal Kapoor, CEO, Morningstar
  • Nari Rhee, PhD, Director of Retirement Security Program, UC Berkeley Labor Center
  • Fiona Greig, PhD, Managing Director and Co-President, JPMorgan Chase Institute (Moderator)

12:00 pm — Break

1:00 pm — Welcome to the Afternoon Session

  •  Tim Shaw, Associate Director, Policy, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program 

1:05 pm — Keynote Address: Retirement Savings in Congress – Legislative Priorities in 2021

  •  The Honorable Richard E. Neal, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee

1:25 pm Building for Access, Adequacy, and Equity: Do We Already Have the Puzzle Pieces for the Retirement Savings System Americans Deserve?

Building on the morning conversation about who has retirement savings in America, who doesn’t, and why that matters, a group of experts will talk more specifically about the building blocks of a truly inclusive, effective savings system. How far are we from the system Americans need? Which building blocks do we already have – and which do we have yet to create? When it comes to expanding access to retirement savings, what needs to happen next, and what will it take to make retirement savings not only accessible – but meaningful?

  • Elizabeth Kelly, Senior Vice President of Growth, United Income from Capital One
  • Kilolo Kijakazi, PhD, Deputy Commissioner of the Office of Retirement and Disability Policy, Social Security Administration
  • Catherine Reilly, Director of Retirement Solutions, Smart USA
  • Ida Rademacher, Vice President, The Aspen Institute and Executive Director, The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program (Moderator)

2:30 pm Conclusion of Event

Funders

The Aspen Leadership Forum on Retirement Savings is designed to advance breakthrough solutions to one of the most critical financial challenges facing American households: the lack of adequate savings for retirement – by providing the opportunity for thought leaders from a diverse range of organizations to share their knowledge and perspectives, build trust, develop collective insights, and work together to produce results. The Forum is supported by AARP, J.P.Morgan Asset Management, and Prudential.

Related Readings: 

Speaker Bios: 

The Honorable Richard E. Neal, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee

Congressman Richard E. Neal represents the First Congressional District of Massachusetts in the United States Congress. Richard Neal was born in Worcester, Massachusetts on February 14, 1949 and was raised and educated in the City of Springfield. He is a 1972 graduate of American International College, where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and was a member of the National Honor Society. He received his Masters Degree in Public Administration from the Barney School of Business and Public Administration at the University of Hartford in 1976

Richard Neal was first elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1988. At the beginning of the 116th Congress, Richard Neal became Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

Congressman Neal is the dean of both the Massachusetts Delegation and the New England Congressional Delegation. He is a long-time guest lecturer at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and a Trustee at Mount Holyoke College. He is a National Trustee of John F. Kennedy Library in Boston. He served as the Mayor of the City of Springfield from 1984 to 1988, and was highlighted in Newsweek Magazine for his many accomplishments as mayor.

Congressman Neal has been a lead sponsor of legislation to prevent American companies from moving offshore to avoid paying U.S. taxes. He has sponsored legislation that would increase the national savings rate by encouraging the use of individual retirement accounts, and has worked to make health care and tuition expenses tax deductible for middle class people.

He successfully led the charge to eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) for middle-class families in America. He has a long legislative history of fighting to preserve and protect Medicare and Social Security.

The Honorable Sarah Godlewski, Wisconsin State Treasurer

Treasurer Sarah Godlewski is a 5th generation Wisconsinite, small business owner, proud Green Bay Packers shareholder, and financial expert from Eau Claire, WI. When politicians tried to eliminate the Wisconsin State Treasurer’s office through a ballot initiative in 2018, Sarah led a bipartisan coalition to save the office, defeating their effort with an overwhelming 62% of the vote. Sarah then stepped up to run, winning her election with 51% of the vote in November 2018.

As Treasurer, Sarah leads a $1.2 billion state trust fund that invests in communities across Wisconsin. Since the beginning of her tenure two years ago, the fund has distributed an unprecedented $74.4 million. Early on, her leadership led to the removal of a gag-rule preventing the state from considering the risk of climate change when making investments. Since this reversal, she has fought to ensure that smart investments are made that benefit our communities and Wisconsin’s economy.

When the COVID pandemic hit, Sarah led the fund to provide an additional $5.25 million to Wisconsin school districts to expand virtual learning and tackle the digital divide. Sarah has also been a tireless advocate for Wisconsin small business owners in the pandemic, helping them navigate the resources available to them and being a voice in Madison during this unprecedented time.

In March 2020, Sarah formed a coalition of local treasurers and community partners to improve homeownership in Wisconsin, aiming to help people buy, maintain, and stay in their homes. In the wake of the pandemic, this Treasurer’s Homeowners Task Force has created an early-response system to help people avoid delinquency and ultimately foreclosure, knowing that it is more important than ever that Wisconsinites can stay safe in their homes.

Additionally, Sarah chairs the Retirement Security Task Force where she is developing innovative ways to ensure Wisconsinites can retire with peace of mind. Through listening sessions with retirees, small business owners, and workers, the Task Force developed plans for a child savings program to address the wealth gap and help families save and a state-facilitated retirement plan that would address retirement access for almost one million Wisconsinites.

Prior to serving, Sarah was the co-founder of a multimillion-dollar socially responsible investment firm called MaSa Partners that invests in early-stage businesses and a co-founder of WE Capital Fund, which empowers female entrepreneurs through financing opportunities. Her work has been nationally recognized for achieving a positive impact while delivering strong financial returns.

Beyond investing, Sarah gained financial expertise working with the Pentagon for almost a decade where she helped save taxpayers tens of millions of dollars. She began her financial career supporting micro-lending initiatives in rural India where she saw firsthand how access to capital can positively transform entire communities.

In her free time, you can find Sarah cheering on Wisconsin sports teams with her husband Max, son Hartley, and their rescue dog Tanner.

Fiona Greig, PhD, Managing Director and Co-President, The JPMorgan Chase Institute

Fiona Greig is a Managing Director and the Co-President at the JPMorgan Chase Institute, which delivers data-rich analyses and expert insights for the public good. She joined the Institute in 2014 after serving as the Deputy Budget Director for the City of Philadelphia for two years. From 2007 to 2012, Fiona was a consultant for McKinsey & Company where she consulted public and social sector clients on strategy, operations and economic development. In 2009 Fiona started and ran Bank on DC, a financial inclusion program for the District of Columbia.

Fiona has published research on topics including household finance, healthcare, labor markets and the Online Platform Economy, gender, and behavioral decision making. Her work has been widely cited in the media, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR, and CNBC. Fiona has held adjunct professor appointments at the University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown University and holds a B.A. from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from Harvard University.

Kunal Kapoor, CEO, Morningstar

Kunal Kapoor, CFA, is chief executive officer of Morningstar and a member of Morningstar’s board of directors. Before assuming his current role in 2017, he served as president, responsible for product development and innovation, sales and marketing, and driving strategic prioritization across the firm.

Since joining Morningstar in 1997 as a data analyst, Kapoor has held a variety of roles at the firm, including leadership positions in research and innovation. He served as director of mutual fund research and was part of the team that launched Morningstar Investment Services, Inc., before moving on to other roles, including director of business strategy for international operations, and later, president and chief investment officer of Morningstar Investment Services. During his tenure, he also led Morningstar.com and the firm’s data business, as well as its global products and client solutions group.

Kapoor holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and environmental policy from Monmouth College and a master’s degree in business administration from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation, is a member of the CFA Society of Chicago, and served on the board of PitchBook, a private firm that provides a comprehensive private equity and venture capital database, prior to its acquisition by Morningstar in late 2016. Kapoor is also a member of the board of trustees of The Nature Conservancy in Illinois. In 2010, Crain’s Chicago Business named him to its annual 40 Under 40 class, a list that includes professionals from a variety of industries who are contributing to Chicago’s business, civic, and philanthropic landscape.

Elizabeth Kelly, SVP of Growth, United Income from Capital One

Elizabeth Kelly serves as SVP of Growth for United Income from Capital One. United Income uses technology to provide holistic financial planning and money management services for people nearing or entering retirement, and sold to Capital One in July 2019. During the Obama Administration, Elizabeth served as Special Assistant to the President at the White House National Economic Council. In that capacity, she led White House engagement with federal agencies and external partners to develop and execute the President’s retirement security, financial inclusion, unemployment insurance, and sustainable capitalism agendas. For her work, Elizabeth was chosen as one of Forbes 30 Under 30 in Law & Policy.

Kilolo Kijakazi, PhD, Deputy Commissioner of the Office of Retirement and Disability Policy, Social Security Administration

Kilolo Kijakazi is the Deputy Commissioner of the Office of Retirement and Disability Policy where she leads policy development and research activities. Kilolo leads the Social Security Administration’s Equity Team on behalf of the Executive Order from the current administration. Prior to coming to the agency, she was a fellow at the Urban Institute. She worked with staff across the institute to develop collaborative partnerships with those most affected by economic and social issues, to expand and strengthen Urban’s agenda of rigorous research, to effectively communicate findings to diverse audiences, and to recruit and retain a diverse research staff at all levels. Kijakazi also conducts research on economic security, structural racism, and the racial wealth gap.

Previously, Kijakazi was a program officer at the Ford Foundation, focusing on building economic security and incorporating the expertise of people of color into all aspects of the work. She was a senior policy analyst for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a program analyst for the US Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service, and a policy analyst for the National Urban League.

Kijakazi’s publications include African-American Economic Development and Small Business Ownership. She is a board member of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation; the National Academy of Social Insurance, and its Study Panel on Economic Security; The Policy Academies; and Liberation in a Generation. She is a member of the Washington, DC Equitable Recovery Advisory Group, advises the Closing the Women’s Wealth Gap Initiative, is a co-chair of the National Advisory Council on Eliminating the Black-White Wealth Gap, and was a member of the Bipartisan Commission on Retirement Security and Personal Savings. Kijakazi holds a BA from SUNY Binghamton, an MSW from Howard University, and a PhD in public policy from the George Washington University.

Catherine Reilly, Director of Retirement Solutions, Smart USA

Catherine Reilly has over 20 years’ experience working in the asset management and retirement industry in Europe and North America, in roles that cover economic and investment research, product design and business strategy. She is currently Director of Retirement Solutions at Smart, a leading retirement technology business and one of the world’s largest recordkeepers, where she focuses on public policy, thought leadership and strategy.

Most recently, Catherine was Global Head of Research for the Defined Contribution team at State Street, where she oversaw the $70bn SSGA target date suite and designed custom retirement saving solutions for domestic and global clients. She also led strategic initiatives evaluating the impact of multiple employer plans, alternative investments and robo-advice on the DC business.

Prior to this, she was Chief Economist of Pohjola Asset Management ($40 Bn Aum) in Finland and Management Consultant at McKinsey & Co., Inc in the Helsinki office.

Catherine is a CFA charter holder. She has degrees in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and Economics from Aalto University in Finland. She has also studied business at ESADE in Spain. She enjoys leveraging her diverse background to find creative solutions to client problems.

Nari Rhee, PhD, Director of the Retirement Security Program at the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education

Nari Rhee, Ph.D., is Director of the Retirement Security Program at the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. Her current research focuses on the retirement crisis facing California and the US in the context of declining pension coverage, and policies to improve the retirement income prospects of low- and middle- wage workers. Before returning to the Labor Center in November 2014, she served for two years as Manager of Research at the National Institute on Retirement Security. She formerly held appointments as a Postdoctoral Scholar, Visiting Scholar, and Associate Academic Specialist at the Labor Center. Dr. Rhee has written on a wide range of issues related to pensions and retirement security, including public pension reform, international pension systems, and retirement plan design. Her analysis of the retirement savings crisis and its racial dimensions has received broad media coverage and informed policy debates at the state and national levels.

Dr. Rhee’s previous work engaged a range of issues related to the economic security of low-wage workers, including care work, income inequality, housing affordability, uneven regional development, and labor-community coalition building. She earned a Ph.D. in Geography from UC Berkeley in 2007, an M.A. in Urban Planning from UCLA in 1998, and a B.A. in Anthropology from UC Santa Cruz in 1996.

Debra Whitman, PhD, Executive Vice President and Chief Public Policy Officer, AARP

Debra Whitman, PhD, is an economist and expert on aging issues. As Chief Public Policy Officer for AARP, she and her teams develop global policy and research insights and solutions that help communities, lawmakers, and the private sector improve our lives as we age.

Debra has extensive experience in national policymaking and domestic and international research. As an economist, she is a strategic thinker whose life’s work has been devoted to solving problems and improving the systems that impact us all as we age. She is a writer and public speaker, a mom, and an advocate for those whose voices need to be heard. Follow her at @policydeb.