CFA Society Chicago wants to help Illinois and Chicago-area public pension plans with free trustee training, while avoiding the political minefield that surrounds them.
The organization of chartered financial analysts is in the formative stage of creating free ethics-training sessions for state and local public plan trustees to save the plans the expense of paying for such training, said Shannon Curley, CFA Society Chicago CEO. Those presenting the program would be volunteers who are being trained by the CFA Institute.
"We wanted to see how we could help our local pension partners while staying non-partisan," said Mr. Curley, referring to the yearslong funding battle over state pension reform between the state General Assembly and Gov. Bruce Rauner.
Mr. Curley said the free training program was suggested by current CFA Society Chicago board member Nickol Hackett, executive director and chief investment officer of the $8 billion Cook County Annuity & Benefit Fund, Chicago, and former board member William Atwood, executive director of the $16 billion Illinois State Board of Investment, Chicago.
The success of the ethics training, required annually under state law, could lead the CFA Society Chicago to offer other training sessions depending on what trustees say they need, Mr. Curley said.
The society hopes to begin ethics training in Chicago in the fall once volunteer training is complete.