• Sunday, March 15, 2020
  • 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Registration
  • 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Pre-Conference Tutorial
    Understanding Your Fiduciary Obligations Under ERISA
    Michael E. Falcone, NFP
    Christian D. Hancey, J.D., Nixon Peabody LLP
    Kate U. Saracene, J.D., Katten
    View Details

    This intensive, six-hour tutorial provides a comprehensive look at the fiduciary duties and obligations of retirement and healthcare plan sponsors. A team of highly respected ERISA experts covers issues ranging from the basic rules and regulations governing fiduciary responsibility to a more advanced look at contemporary and unfolding issues.  Among the retirement plan topics explored are Fiduciary Committee formation and governance, investment and fiduciary consulting models, selecting non-financial service providers, investing plan assets, using plan assets to pay expenses and current fiduciary litigation. Additional health plan topics include health plan contracting and oversight, notice and disclosure requirements, and a basic legal compliance primer.

    Speakers:

    Michael E. Falcone, NFP

    Michael E. Falcone
    Vice President, East Region
    NFP

    Michael Falcone is the vice president of the east coast retirement consulting practice for NFP, where he guides plan sponsors and their participants to financial wellness and long-term success. Part of NFP since 2007, Mr. Falcone has more than 25 years of experience in qualified plan design, investment due diligence, funding and participant communication. Previously he was a retirement consultant for Aon Consulting, and he is well-versed in managing individual plan requirements of all sizes for employers across a wide range of industries. Mr. Falcone is a frequent speaker at top industry events, most notably leading the full-day fiduciary best practices tutorial at the Mid-Sized Retirement & Healthcare Plan Management Conference for several years. In 2009 and 2010, he ranked on the 401kwire.com list of “Top 300 Most Influential Advisors in Defined Contribution,” receiving recognition for being among the “Top 40” advisors in the large market segment. Mr. Falcone graduated with a B.S. in mathematics from Drexel University. Mr. Falcone holds the chartered financial consultant and chartered life underwriter designations from The American College.

    Christian D. Hancey, J.D., Nixon Peabody LLP

    Christian D. Hancey, J.D.
    Partner
    Nixon Peabody LLP

    Christian Hancey is a partner in Nixon Peabody LLP’s employee benefits and executive compensation group where he focuses on designing, reviewing and implementing a wide range of benefit and compensation programs structured to suit businesses and nonprofit organizations. He also counsels employers on all types of traditional benefit plans, including defined benefit pension plans, 401(k) and 403(b) plans, multiemployer plans, medical benefit plans, cafeteria plans and disability plans. Additionally, Mr. Hancey works with employers to manage the transition of employees and their benefits during and after a merger or acquisition as well as advise employers and administrative committees on fiduciary oversight of ERISA plans. He was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (2016) within Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law, has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 2015, and was recognized as a “Super Lawyer” in Employee Benefits/ERISA law by Super Lawyers magazine in 2014. He received his B.A., magna cum laude, from Brigham Young University and his J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law.

    Kate U. Saracene, J.D.
    Partner
    Katten

    Kate Saracene is a partner with Katten, where she advises fully and self-insured employers, consultants, insurance brokers, third-party administrators and multiple employer associations regarding employee benefit plan design and operational compliance. She has extensive experience with a variety of plan types, including health, life and accident, flexible spending accounts, health reimbursement arrangements, dependent care assistance programs and severance pay, among others. Ms. Saracene also provides counsel on wellness programs and paid family leave, and helps clients navigate the complexities of government disclosures and filings, Department of Labor and other government audits, and benefit plan litigation. She also represents employers in negotiations involving third-party administrative service agreements and collective bargaining agreements. Additionally, Ms. Saracene provides counsel on compliance matters to a wide variety of employer types, including education, health care, manufacturing, hospitality, technology, media, government and industry associations. She has a robust practice advising third-party administrators on product development and compliance. Previously, Ms. Saracene headed a number of human resources functions at Xerox, and most recently served as the head of the health and welfare benefits team at an Am Law 100 firm, where she also practiced as an employment law attorney. She frequently lectures and writes on topics relating to employee benefits and wellness programs, and has been featured in national and industry media, including quotes appearing in Forbes, Bloomberg Business Week, Law360, HR Morning and HR Executive. She has been recognized as a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers, a “40 Under Forty” award recipient by the Rochester Business Journal, a “Top Woman in Law” by The Daily Record, and a “Woman to Watch” by the Democrat & Chronicle. She received her B.S. from Cornell University and her J.D. from Yale Law School.

     

  • 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
    Pre-Conference Self-Funding Forum
    Self-Funding Forum: Basic Concepts, Advanced Tactics and Compliance Insights
    Dean M. Hoffman, Dean M. Hoffman, LLC
    Kate U. Saracene, J.D., Katten
    View Details

    This all-inclusive, five-hour session begins with the basics of self-funding your health and welfare plan and progresses to more advanced tactics for risk mitigation. The speaker breaks down this funding arrangement into easy-to-understand segments and explains the “plug and play” approach to stop loss protection, claims administration, case management, pharmacy, data analytics, domestic medical travel, direct provider contracting and digital medicine. Gain an understanding of the emerging use of group captives along with the new level-funded and reference-based pricing arrangements. A seasoned employee benefits attorney also provides an overview of key compliance requirements and considerations. Gain insight into the variations of stop loss contracts, including recent hybrid contracts, and how they impact the employer’s risk tolerance and financial goals. Discuss real-world case studies and walk away from this session well-grounded in the concepts of self-funding and partial self-funding.

    Speakers:

    Dean M. Hoffman
    Benefits Consultant
    Dean M. Hoffman, LLC

    Dean Hoffman is a benefits consultant and the owner of consulting firm, Dean M. Hoffman, LLC, that provides employee benefit consulting services, customized training for plan sponsors, benefit managers, human resource professionals, agents, brokers and is often retained for expert witness testimony work. He has been in the employee benefit industry for more than 40 years, with an emphasis in group employee benefit plans. Mr. Hoffman has expertise in a broad range of employee benefits, including prescription plan analysis and all funding arrangements, including conventionally insured, minimum premium, retrospective, experience refund, stop loss, level funded and self-funding. His strategic leadership process is centered on providing solutions to plan sponsors seeking to maximize their healthcare benefits and enhance employee satisfaction while managing their healthcare expenditure. Mr. Hoffman utilizes his technical skills, advanced knowledge of ERISA plans, stop loss contracting, health care systems and data analysis to meet the needs of both the plan sponsor and employee. His knowledge on self-funded arrangements has made him a favorite at many health and welfare plan management conferences around the country. Professional affiliations include a 30-year membership in the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) and past president of its Wisconsin Chapter. Mr. Hoffman has been a long-time advocate on legislative issues affecting the employee benefits industry, including hosting Congressional briefings for members of Congress and the Wisconsin legislature about the health insurance marketplace and the advantages of self-funding. In addition to having served on the NAHU board of trustees, he has volunteered for a number of the organization’s committees, including most recently chairing the Professional Development Committee.

    Kate U. Saracene, J.D.
    Partner
    Katten

    Kate Saracene is a partner with Katten, where she advises fully and self-insured employers, consultants, insurance brokers, third-party administrators and multiple employer associations regarding employee benefit plan design and operational compliance. She has extensive experience with a variety of plan types, including health, life and accident, flexible spending accounts, health reimbursement arrangements, dependent care assistance programs and severance pay, among others. Ms. Saracene also provides counsel on wellness programs and paid family leave, and helps clients navigate the complexities of government disclosures and filings, Department of Labor and other government audits, and benefit plan litigation. She also represents employers in negotiations involving third-party administrative service agreements and collective bargaining agreements. Additionally, Ms. Saracene provides counsel on compliance matters to a wide variety of employer types, including education, health care, manufacturing, hospitality, technology, media, government and industry associations. She has a robust practice advising third-party administrators on product development and compliance. Previously, Ms. Saracene headed a number of human resources functions at Xerox, and most recently served as the head of the health and welfare benefits team at an Am Law 100 firm, where she also practiced as an employment law attorney. She frequently lectures and writes on topics relating to employee benefits and wellness programs, and has been featured in national and industry media, including quotes appearing in Forbes, Bloomberg Business Week, Law360, HR Morning and HR Executive. She has been recognized as a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers, a “40 Under Forty” award recipient by the Rochester Business Journal, a “Top Woman in Law” by The Daily Record, and a “Woman to Watch” by the Democrat & Chronicle. She received her B.S. from Cornell University and her J.D. from Yale Law School.

     

  • Monday, March 16, 2020
  • 7:00 am - 4:00 pm
    Registration
  • 7:00 am - 8:15 am
    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:15 am - 8:30 am
    Welcome/Opening Remarks
  • 8:30 am - 9:30 am
    Keynote Address
    What if…? Connecting the Dots Between Retirement Plan Questions, Answers and Implications
    Bradley D. Ferguson, SWBC Retirement Plan Services
    View Details

    Sometimes the best insight comes from the simplest questions. A question from a colleague….an employee…a litigator…or even a fellow conference attendee. But what if you aren’t even sure what the question is? During this engaging session, explore a variety of retirement plan questions, answers and implications, ranging from simple questions regarding provider roles to complex questions regarding fiduciary responsibility. Additionally, receive guidance regarding the best way to implement solutions.

    Speaker:

    Bradley D. Ferguson
    Vice President, Institutions
    SWBC Retirement Plan Services

    Brad Ferguson is vice president of institutions with SWBC Retirement Plan Services and also serves as a voting member of the firm’s investment committee. He has more than 16 years of experience in providing fiduciary services to plan sponsors in the retirement plan industry and acts as the head of the firm’s institutional practice, providing fiduciary services to retirement plan providers at an enterprise level. Previously, Mr. Ferguson was a senior investment advisor with The Standard, where he managed the mid-Atlantic regional advisory practice. He has also served as a financial advisor for MassMutual, where he provided comprehensive planning services to private wealth clients. Mr. Ferguson received a B.S. in business administration from Shippensburg University.

  • 9:45 am - 10:45 am
  • 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • 12:00 pm - 1:45 pm
    Lunch & Speaker
    20/20 Vision in 2020! It's Time to Take a Closer Look at Your Healthcare Benefits
    Marybeth Gray, Trion
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    Our world has never witnessed a time of greater promise for improving human health. New advances such as gene editing, cancer immunotherapy expansion, and human brain mapping are helping to build a solid foundation for a more individualized approach to healthcare, often called ‘precision medicine’.  These new breakthroughs are expensive while they are incredibly life-saving. How can you position your health and welfare plans to keep up? This energetic presentation highlights the changes happening right now and offers attendees some thought-provoking and challenging insight on how benefit plans can change in 2020 with the vision of precision medicine!

    Speaker:

    Marybeth Gray
    Senior Vice President Health & Welfare Consulting
    Trion

    Marybeth Gray has worked in the employee benefits field for more than 25 years. She currently serves as a senior vice president of health and welfare consulting with Trion, a Marsh & McLennan Agency firm, supervising the overall account management for her clients. Skilled at analyzing companies’ healthcare costs and benefit plans, Ms. Gray is an expert in identifying financial opportunities and assisting with strategic planning, with special emphasis on large, self-insured clients. Previously, she was a vice president with Aon Consulting, where she specialized in utilization and data management for key cost drivers, as well as developing and redesigning pharmacy programs. Ms. Gray’s strategic approach is a direct result of her experience working as a national account manager with Aetna Inc., where she was responsible for overall account management, including the financial perspective and program operations for clients with more than 10,000 employee lives in multiple locations. She also served on the President’s Roundtable Committee for the firm, fostering communications between clients and the president’s office regarding suggested changes that would improve operational procedures. In 2017, Ms. Gray was recognized as one of the “Most Influential Women in Benefit Advising” by Employee Benefit News. She is a member of the National Business Group on Health in Washington, D.C., a board member of UPMC Hamot Medical Center, and a speaker for Pennsylvania State University’s health policy and administration program. Ms. Gray graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a bachelor of science degree in health policy and administration. She is licensed in accident, health, life and fixed annuities in 32 states.

  • 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
  • 3:00 pm - 3:15 pm
    Refreshment Break
  • 3:15 pm - 4:15 pm
  • 4:15 pm - 5:30 pm
    Networking Reception
  • Tuesday, March 17, 2020
  • 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
    Registration
  • 7:30 am - 8:30 am
    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:30 am - 9:30 am
    Keynote Address
    Word Association is Holding You Back!
    Mark Rieder, NFP
    View Details

    When you think of Artificial Intelligence (AI) what do you think? You aren’t alone. Many fear that the rise of AI will lead to robots replacing human workers and taking over the world. Although AI is already deeply engrained in our daily lives, corporate leaders still struggle to find transformational applications of this emerging technology for their business needs. Take the first step by joining us as we break down artificial intelligence, the various degrees of AI, and its potential to improve productivity, efficiency, and accuracy across your entire human resources department.

    Speaker:

    Mark Rieder
    SVP, HR Technologies and Benefit Administration Services
    NFP

    Mark Rieder is the senior vice president of HR technologies and benefit administration services for NFP. Since joining the firm in 2010, Mr. Rieder helped launch the company’s national benefits administration practice, which supports more than 100 brokering and consulting offices throughout the United States. He has also expanded the practice area to provide HRIS consulting services through its newly formed HR services division. Mr. Rider has played an integral role in the development of the firm’s marketplace and exchange solutions and most recently helped launch their new innovation group, charged with researching technology players in HR and benefits-related markets to identify new upstart companies. He regularly speaks as a panelist and instructor on client-facing training. Mr. Rieder has been in the employee benefits industry for more than 20 years, including nine years as CEO of a leading employee benefits consulting firm based in the Philadelphia area. He has a bachelor’s degree in finance with an emphasis in economics from The Pennsylvania State University.

  • 9:45 am - 10:45 am
  • 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • 12:00 pm - 1:45 pm
    Panel Discussion
    The Driving Force Behind Healthcare Benefits Innovation...Spoiler Alert: It's You
    Paul Fronstin, Ph.D., Employee Benefit Research Institute
    View Details

    The employment-based health benefits system is the most common form of health coverage in the United States, covering 177 million people under age 65 in 2018. Many plan design innovations have come from creative employers attempting to better engage employees and/or make their health care benefit more affordable. Two recent examples are consumer-driven health benefits (CDHPs) and value-based insurance design (VBID). In this session, learn about the vital role employers play in health plan innovation and gain an understanding of the numerous potential threats the system faces in the future–most notably from public policy. Public policies related to the Cadillac tax, Medicare-for-all, and proposals that would allow insurance to be purchased in the individual market using employer funding may all affect whether there is an employment-based health benefits system in the future. This insightful keynote presentation examines the role of employers in plan design and care delivery innovation as well as the potential impact of public policy on the future of the employment-based health benefits system.

    Speaker:

    Paul Fronstin, Ph.D.
    Director, Health Research & Education Program
    Employee Benefit Research Institute

    Paul Fronstin is director of the Health Research and Education Program at the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to original public policy research and education on economic security and employee benefits. He oversees the Center for Research on Health Benefits Innovation and has been with EBRI since 1993. Dr. Fronstin’s research interests include trends in employment-based health benefits, consumer-driven health benefits, health savings accounts (HSAs), private health insurance exchanges, workplace wellness programs, retiree health benefits, employee benefits and taxation, and public opinion about health benefits and health care. He currently serves on the board of trustees for Emeriti Retirement Health Solutions and for the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions. Dr. Fronstin also serves on the National Advisory Board for the University of Michigan Center for Value-Based Insurance Design. He is the associate editor of Benefits Quarterly and is also a TIAA-CREF Institute Fellow. Dr. Fronstin served on the Maryland Health Care Commission from 2012-2016 and also served from 2015-2018 on the Maryland Patient Safety Center board of directors. He earned his bachelor of science degree from SUNY Binghamton and his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Miami.

  • 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
  • 3:00 pm - 3:15 pm
    Refreshment Break
  • 3:15 pm - 4:15 pm
  • 4:15 pm - 5:30 pm
    Networking Reception
  • Wednesday, March 18, 2020
  • 7:30 am - 11:00 am
    Registration
  • 7:30 am - 8:30 am
    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:30 am - 9:30 am
    Keynote Address
    Fire Up So You Don’t Burn Out
    Jessica Rector, Mindset and Burnout Expert
    View Details

    Burnout is like a wildfire…spreading quickly and affecting everything in its path. Current research shows that 79% of the workforce is burned out. The World Health Organization now recognizes burnout as a medical diagnosis, yet most people don’t even know how to identify it. When burnout is unresolved, studies show you experience a decrease in health, productivity, communication, and morale. In this powerful presentation, learn key strategies to prevent and extinguish burnout by pinpointing contributing factors and discover how to better handle stress to improve interactions, performance, and leadership.

    Speaker:

    Jessica Rector
    Mindset and Burnout Expert

  • 9:45 am - 10:45 am
  • 11:00 am - 12:00 pm