The International Centre for Pension Management (ICPM) is pleased to welcome Mel Duffield (Universities Superannuation Scheme, U.K.) and Kristina Koutrakos (Virginia Retirement System, U.S.) as its newest board members.

“Mel and Kristina are natural additions to the ICPM Board. For years, they have already been valuable committee members who have helped to grow and shape our education programs and member events – both key pillars of ICPM,” says Michelle Ostermann, ICPM Board Chair. “We are very fortunate to have their expert perspectives among our board.”

Mel Duffield is currently Chief Scheme Strategy and Stakeholder Officer at Universities Superannuation Scheme, the £75.5bn hybrid scheme for universities and higher education institutions in the UK. Mel’s executive responsibilities include oversight and coordination of valuations, corporate communications and external relations, stakeholder support and strategy and insight. Prior to joining USS in 2015, Mel held positions at organizations such as Pensions Policy Institute (PPI) and Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA). She was also a senior economic advisor at HM Treasury, the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department of Education. Mel has served on ICPM’s Pension Education Committee since 2019, which oversees the growth of education programs tailored to pension boards.

Kristina Koutrakos has been Director, Portfolio Strategies at Virginia Retirement System since 2015, where she is responsible for the development and implementation of multi-asset portfolios and investment strategies at the $100+ billion U.S. state pension plan. Prior to this role, she was Managing Partner and founder of an investment firm to research and invest in women-run alternative investment funds. Kristina has served on ICPM’s Forum and Events Committee for the last year, which ensures member-exclusive events such as the in-person Discussion Forums and virtual round tables remain on point and relevant and for ICPM’s Research Partners.

A special thank you goes to outgoing board members: Marcie Frost (California Public Employees’ Retirement System, U.S.) and Bernard Morency (Canada). Marcie and Bernard have been strong supporters of ICPM for nearly a decade and instrumental in shaping the organization as it became its own non-profit in 2015. Both were also longtime members of the Pension Education Committee (with Bernard as Committee Chair) and especially influential in growing ICPM’s education offerings tailored to pension boards, including the flagship ICPM-Rotman Pension Governance Education Program, as well as the ICPM-Maastricht Program on Trust-Building Through Effective Communications successfully launched last year.

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