The SOA At Work

The SOA At Work

This month's column describes an important new project at the SOA, intended to help identify, develop and support the many members who volunteer their time or are elected to leadership positions. The SOA is an association powered by its members and elected leadership–the work of the association could not be done without their efforts. In his column in the June/July issue of The Actuary, SOA President Bruce Schobel addressed the key role volunteerism plays in all of our activities. The new Leadership Resource System is intended to address critical needs–organizing participation and involvement information about volunteers and leaders, identifying development needs and opportunities, and matching members with leadership openings. With this system, we hope to be able to help members better track and manage all their SOA volunteer or leadership commitments, avoid "over-taxing" member volunteers with too many concurrent assignments, encourage participation by new volunteers or by those who are currently less involved, and provide valuable leadership development opportunities.

While we expect this system to help the SOA, we also expect it to be very important for members and their employers. Members who become involved in SOA activities gain skills in group dynamics, committee work, building consensus, public speaking, communication, and other critical business soft skills. This benefits them as well as their employers and is an important reason many become involved. We're excited about this project and look forward to bringing its benefits to the SOA and its members.
–SOA Executive Director Greg Heidrich

Planning Underway for Leadership Resource System

The SOA is in phase one of its plan to develop a Leadership Resource System, which is a top objective of the Leadership Development Committee and was a major topic at the Strategic Planning Summit in April. This all–encompassing system will improve the SOA's ability to leverage our critical volunteer work force. A leadership resource team was created earlier this year, with representatives from every department within the SOA. These team members identified the volunteer positions in their respective departments in order to develop a list of clearly defined volunteer opportunities and job descriptions. The team is now working to finalize a plan for providing a systematic approach to volunteer management to ensure that each SOA volunteer receives the training and support necessary for efficient and successful completion of assignments.

More than 4,700 volunteers contribute to the SOA, assisting with events, research, exams and numerous ongoing projects. The development of a new volunteer resource system will help the Society to:

  • Attract, develop and retain talented and committed human resources.
  • Identify and develop leaders at all levels.
  • Promote a culture of commitment, innovation, service and excellence.
  • evelop and promote professional networks.

The SOA will move into phase two–implementation–in 2009. This includes efforts to increase staff knowledge of volunteer management, garner more robust volunteer statistics, match volunteer roles, interests and expertise more effectively, and ensure volunteers are oriented to the SOA strategy and functions.

The Actuarial Profession


U.S. News & World Report Features SOA Retirement Report The Report's Web article was based on results from the Risks & Process of Retirement Report.

WCVB–TV Boston Highlights SOA Retirement Report Results The television station's Web site featured an article citing information from the Risks & Process of Retirement Report.

New Haven Register Cites SOA Retirement Report, Features FSA This online piece on retirees' concerns about savings was based on results of the Risks & Process of Retirement Report.

Best's Review Features Risk Management Article by FSAs The article, by Mark Slutzky and Jim Stoltzfus, explains how economic capital modeling links the effectiveness of a company's risk management to its capital requirements.

View all of these articles by visiting and clicking on Actuaries in the News.

2008 SOA Educational Opportunities

October 19–22
SOA 08 Annual Meeting & Exhibit
Orlando, Fla.

October 22–24
The Future of Life–Cycle Saving & Investing
Boston, Mass.

October 27–28
Equity–Based Insurance Guarantees Conference
Boston, Mass.

November 10–11
Introduction to Predictive Modeling:
Techniques and Practices for Insurance Actuaries
Chicago, Ill.

December 1–2
Stochastic Modeling Symposium
Montreal, Quebec

To view the entire list of SOA educational opportunities, visit