February 2012

Letter From The Chair

by J. Eddie Smith

I consider it a huge honor to chair the Technology Section. Not only is it an opportunity to give back to a professional organization that's given me so much, I get to work with a cast of other volunteers who, like me, are passionate about using technology to improve the profession.

But before looking too far ahead, I'd like to look back and thank Jeff Pomerantz for donating his time and insight in the chairperson role last year, as well as outgoing members Tim Deitz and Frank Reynolds. These three gentlemen served the section dutifully for three years, and I'm very grateful for their contributions.

Now I'd like to introduce your 2012 Technology Section council.

Steve Finn, a second-year council member, will serve as the vice chair. Steve works with Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis.

Andrew Chan is a first-year council member. In addition to continuing his role as CompAct co-editor, Andrew will serve as web coordinator in 2012. Andrew works with ALG in Toronto.

Mary Pat Campbell, a second-year council member, will serve as secretary and treasurer. Mary Pat works with Conning Research and with The Infinite Actuary in Hartford.

Dave Kester, a third-year council member, will serve as LinkedIn coordinator, a new role with a focus on increasing awareness of professional social networking. Dave is the owner of SALT Solutions and Coaching Actuaries in Des Moines.

Lisa Lefkowitz, a third-year council member, will continue to help out with various section initiatives. Lisa works with PolySystems in Chicago.

Chris Olechowski, a third-year council member, will serve as annual meeting coordinator. Chris works with Actuarial Resources Corporation in Overland Park, Kan.

Albert Moore, a first-year council member, will serve as the spring meeting coordinator, health meeting coordinator, and webinar coordinator. Albert works with Ohio National Life Insurance in Cincinnati.

Rich Junker, a first-year council member, will continue in his role as co-editor of CompAct. Rich is the owner of Junker Consulting in Tampa, Fla.

Jennifer Gillespie will continue to be our SOA board partner. She works with BlueCross BlueShield of Minnesota in St. Paul.

Finally, I work with Liberty Life Insurance in Greenville, SC. I also instruct actuarial exam seminars with The Infinite Actuary.

Looking ahead

As we journey another year into the 21st century—a time of unprecedented technological advancement—I'd like to point out that one thing hasn't changed at all. Good communication is the key to making goals come true.

Reliable, consistent channels of information are vital to the success of relationships large and small—whether they're in your professional or personal life. Our section needs good communication to prosper, too. And it's never been easier thanks to technology.

Use email to get in touch with council members. Tell us what you would like to see in your Technology Section, or tell us how you would like to help. Sign up for LinkedIn and other social networks. Ask questions. Answer questions. Learn. Teach.

Make connections—with people, problems, and opportunities.

There are many roles technology will play in our professional lives, and there are many opportunities for the Technology Section to educate SOA members about new technologies. But let's make it our chief goal to use technology to become better communicators.

J. Eddie Smith, IV, FSA, MAAA, is assistant actuary with Liberty Life Insurance Co. He can be contacted at j.eddie.smith.iv@gmail.com