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Excellence and Innovation Awards
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Are you (or someone you know) doing something innovative to improve retirement income security for plan participants?

Pensions & Investments and the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA) are again co-sponsoring an awards program for excellence and innovation by defined contribution plan executives.

We want to recognize out-of-the-box thinking by DC plan executives and their employers who are making new and unusual changes to help improve participants’ retirement income security.

The possibilities are endless; there are no categories. Last year’s winners, for example, displayed a diversity of approaches for encouraging greater savings while recognizing that retirement security is the sum of many parts — including those outside of formal retirement plans. A more holistic approach to financial wellness was key to those efforts.

Whatever the innovation is in design and/or excellence in execution, it undoubtedly is something others are just now considering. Help your peers by sharing your innovation and receive recognition for your ingenuity.

P&I and DCIIA are looking for programs implemented on or after Jan. 1, 2018.

Nomination deadline is May 31. Winners will be honored at Pensions & Investments’ 2019 West Coast Defined Contribution Conference to be held November 3-5 at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego.

Full details can be found at

Contact us on for details or if you have questions.

2018 Excellence and Innovation Awards

Since 2012, DCIIA and Pensions and Investments (P&I) have co-sponsored this annual award for defined contribution plan sponsors. These awards are designed to recognize DC plan executives and their employers for well-executed, creative and unusual projects that help ensure participants have an adequate income at retirement. Entries are judged on innovation well as excellence in execution.

The winners were announced at Pensions & Investments’ 2018 West Coast Defined Contribution Conference.

The innovation winners were:

  • Tobias Read, Oregon state treasurer, Salem, and chairman of the Oregon Retirement Savings Board.
  • Marco Merz, director of defined contribution, and Arthur Guimaraes, chief operating officer, Office of the Chief Investment Officer of the Regents, University of California, Oakland.

The excellence winners were:

  • Mary Nell Billings, the Memphis, Tennessee-based senior director, global retirement programs for Hilton Worldwide.
  • Kerstin Aiello, senior benefits manager, Synopsis Inc., Mountain View, California.
  • Diana Winalski, Stamford, Connecticut-based head of 401(k) product management, International Paper Co.
  • Lisa Montalvo, benefits division leader and plan administrator, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, California, and Michelle Ryan, investment program manager, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico.
  • Tricia Miyoshi, human resources manager, Package Pavement Co. Inc., Stormville, New York.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Pensions & Investments