WHAT LED YOU TO BECOME AN ACTUARY? AND WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO THE PROFESSION?
I was interested in a profession in statistics or other mathematics-related occupation.
DESCRIBE A PROFESSIONALISM-RELATED CHALLENGE THAT YOU HAVE FACED IN YOUR CAREER. HOW DID YOU HANDLE IT?
Transitioning from pension consulting actuary to a manager of benefit operations over a large church organization that still included some actuarial functions and responsibility was difficult. I had a number of new responsibilities such as reporting to the COO and ultimately a board of directors, managing an operational team, as well as managing a large implementation of a complicated record-keeping system. Juggling that along with starting a family (my wife had twins within the first three months of starting the new job to go along with two older kids). In addition to that, my commute of over two hours to New York City (one way) took quite a bit of time out of my day. I found that this is when I learned the most about my ability to manage my time—both professionally and personally. This is when I noticed the biggest growth in my career.
WHAT ADVICE DO YOU WISH YOU WERE GIVEN WHEN YOU WERE AT THE BEGINNING OF YOUR CAREER?
Always look for new opportunity and never turn them down. This will be how you learn the most and succeed—through your willingness to be flexible and not scared to make a mistake and learn from it.
TELL US ABOUT A TIME WHERE YOUR ACTUARIAL EXPERTISE INFLUENCED AN IMPORTANT DECISION IN YOUR WORKPLACE.
During my time with a church organization, there was an analysis done looking at funding of the members’ benefits compared to the reserve needed to pay the benefits. During this analysis, my boss and I opined on whether the plan had the ability to give benefit increase and still be in a strong funded position. This impacted not only my workplace, but ultimately the lives of the members and benefits they received.
WHAT IS ONE OF THE BIGGEST LESSONS YOU’VE LEARNED IN YOUR CAREER?
Jump at every opportunity that you see or are offered.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE ANYTHING ELSE WITH ASPIRING OR NEW ACTUARIES, OR THOSE INTERESTED IN VOLUNTEERING FOR THE ACADEMY?
Volunteering at the Academy is a clear example of being able to jump at opportunities and getting exposure to learn as much as possible. It has been a very educational experience and something I would recommend to everyone.
SHARE A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF. WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR HOBBIES OR OTHER PERSONAL INTERESTS?
My hobbies now include supporting my children in their interests, which include coaching basketball, volunteering for the Scouts, watching dance competitions and spending weekends at the soccer field. I am also a huge college basketball fan and root for the best program in the world—the Tarheels of the University of North Carolina.