Jack Ehnes, CEO of CalSTRS since December 2001, received the Lillywhite Award, given in recognition of outstanding lifetime contributions to America's economic security, at Pensions & Investments' annual West Coast Defined Contribution conference in San Francisco.
“His lifetime contributions to the profession, vast expertise and primary focus on the actual delivery of lifetime income security make him especially worthy of the Lillywhite Award,” Dallas Salisbury, president and CEO of the Employee Benefit Research Institute, said in a statement about the award. EBRI sponsors the award.
“It was lovely,” Mr. Ehnes said of receiving the award. “I think it's just good for all of us to have attention drawn to the work (we do),” he said in a telephone interview.
As CEO of the $139.2 billion California State Teachers' Retirement System, West Sacramento, for nearly 10 years, one of the things of which he is most proud is how trustworthy participants find the system, in an era when many people distrust the country's financial systems.
While the quarterly Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust index found only 23% of Americans find the country's financial systems trustworthy, “our numbers are 80%,” Mr. Ehnes said.
“We've created that bond that's so important to them when they depend on this institution for the bulk of their financial needs,” he said.