I am proud to serve as a three-term member of the CalPERS Board of Administration; and, I am equally proud to have been elected in 2019 as the first retiree representative to serve as President of the Board.

I ran for Board President this year because I want to make sure that you, and retirees like you, have representation in the highest office on the Board. I ran because I want our issues—retiree issues—to be at the forefront of everything CalPERS does.

I believe retirees deserve:

  • A health and benefits system that works for us not against us;
  • A stable fund that ensures defined benefits are protected and healthcare is high-quality and secure; and,
  • Consistent investment returns.

Since being elected I have worked hard to:

  • Ensure that CalPERS practices the highest ethical standards in protecting and building on the investments and assets of our members;
  • Create and support policies towards greater accountability within the organization and among our partners, contractors and vendors;
  • Protect retiree and member’s defined benefits by fighting against any proposal that would cut defined benefits;
  • Ensure that retirees and public employees are fully engaged in the governance of the Board;
  • Make sure that all decisions regarding the financial and fiscal matters before the Board are in the best interest of the beneficiaries (employees and retirees); and,
  • Ensure solid investment strategies by doing as I did as chair of the CalPERS Investment Committee where I led development of many of CALPERS’ investment principles which have been adopted by pension funds around the world.

I believe these are among the reasons, I am endorsed by the current and former California State Treasurers. Because my responsibility to you is assuring that I do what is right not what is popular.

Since beginning my career in public service as a 19 year old janitor with the nation’s second largest school district (Los Angeles Unified) through my retirement 37 years later with the same district but serving as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) administering a $7 billion budget and managing 500 employees, I learned what it means to serve on both sides of the table--labor and management. I learned what it means to have a fiscal and fiduciary responsibility to employees and for them.

In addition to serving as a CFO, I have also held positions as:

  • State Finance Chair, Association of California School Administrators;
  • Treasurer, Council of Institutional Investors (a shareowner-rights organization of pension fund assets then exceeding $1 trillion);  
  • CEO, Annuity Reserve Fund Board, overseeing pension portfolio management for 7,000 administrators and teachers; and,
  • Chairman, Schools Federal Credit Union, serving 20,000+ electricians, accountants, clerks, bus drivers, custodians, and others.

I’ve brought these experiences to the Board and I am proud of many of our accomplishments over my three terms of service. Among them we have:

  • Negotiated healthcare premium cuts while containing increases for hundreds of thousands more.
  • Increased the value of the fund for contracted employers that are pre-funding future retiree health care obligations by 22.3 percent through the California Employers’ Retiree Benefit Trust Fund (CERBT).
  • Expanded the value of CalPERS pension fund (which has grown from its low of $164 billion at the bottom of the global financial crisis in 2009 to an all-time high of $362 billion with an 8.6 percent return on investments in 2018).

CalPERS is the nation’s largest public pension system. We are leaders not just in the nation but in the world. A global fund deserves serious, thoughtful, and experienced leadership which is what I have always strived to provide.

I am humbled to have been elected to the Board and to serve retirees from Del Norte to San Diego, and I would be honored to continue serving you in the years to come.

Thank you for your consideration!

Henry Jones

Henry Jones for CalPERS Board
Henry Jones for CalPERS Board