Sandy Blair, Director of Retirement Readiness, CalSTRS
Sandy Blair is the Director of Retirement Readiness for the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS). She rose through the ranks in CalSTRS after arriving in 2009 to a management position in CalSTRS’ office of Client Outreach and Guidance. She was instrumental in establishing the model of CalSTRS first Member Service Center in West Sacramento. Sandy administers the CalSTRS Pension2® personal wealth plan, which consists of 403(b), 457 and Roth 403(b) plans. Pension2 serves as a supplemental savings plan for all California school and community college employees.
Under her leadership, the CalSTRS defined contribution plan, Pension2®, experienced tremendous growth. It currently administers more than $600 million in assets on behalf of more than 10,000 plan participants. Sandy has extensive private sector experience in consumer banking, finance and tax preparation.
She earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration finance from California State University, Sacramento.
Angela Montez, Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Chief Legal Officer, ICMA-RC
Angela Montez serves as ICMA-RC’s Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Chief Legal Officer. In this capacity, Ms. Montez oversees ICMA-RC’s Legal Department, managing and coordinating the internal Legal staff and external legal counsel to address all legal and regulatory matters for ICMA-RC its subsidiaries and affiliates.
As the Corporation’s lead employee benefits lawyer, she has primary responsibility for legal advice and guidance provided in this key area to ICMA-RC’s business units and senior management. As a member of the Senior Leadership Team, she plays an active role in strategic planning for the Corporation. She focuses substantial attention on the Corporation’s governance and advises the Corporation and its subsidiaries regarding governance issues and best practices. She also leads ICMA-RC’s mission-based advocacy efforts to advance federal and state legislative and regulatory changes beneficial to public employee retirement savers. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Society of Professional Asset-Managers and Recordkeepers, the Executive Steering Committee of the Coalition of Collective Investment Trusts and is a member of the Savings Preservation Working Group.
Before joining ICMA-RC, Ms. Montez was an associate with Groom Law Group, Chartered, where she specialized in title I of ERISA, counseling private plan clients on a variety of issues, including fiduciary responsibility, participant rights, investment and health care issues. While in law school, she interned in the Office of the City Administrator of the District of Columbia, Mr. Robert Mallett. Prior to law school, Angela worked as a Special Assistant to the Majority Whip of the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman William H. Gray.
Ms. Montez received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania and her law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Aron Szapiro, Head of Policy Research, Morningstar, Inc.
Aron Szapiro is head of policy research for Morningstar. Szapiro is responsible for developing research reports on policy matters, coordinating official responses to regulatory proposals, and providing investor-focused comments on policy issues to clients and the press. He also chairs Morningstar’s Public Policy Council. His research has been covered in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Journal of Retirement, and on National Public Radio.
Before assuming his current role in July 2016, he served as Morningstar’s associate director of policy research and as policy and finance expert at HelloWallet, a former subsidiary of Morningstar. Previously, he was a senior analyst at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), specializing in retirement security issues and pension plan policy. He also worked at the New Jersey General Assembly Majority Office.
Szapiro holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Grinnell College and a master’s in public policy from Johns Hopkins University.