Dedicated to Caring for You—Under a New Name!
The General Board of Pension and Health Benefits will be re-named Wespath Benefits and Investments in July 2016. While we may be changing our name, the people and services you rely on will continue to support your retirement, health and welfare plans, and manage your investment funds.
What’s in a Name
Over the course of our 108 years of service, the scope of our mission evolved and our name evolved with it, expressing the nature of our work. Our name has always described our service role and responsibility, as an administrative agency of The United Methodist Church.
1908—Board of Conference Claimants
1924—Board of Pensions and Relief
1944—Board of Pensions of The Methodist Church
1956—General Board of Pensions
1992—General Board of Pension and Health Benefits of The United Methodist Church
2016—Wespath Benefits and Investments
And as our role evolved and expanded, our name became increasingly longer! Today, we have a very long name, and yet it still does not describe everything we do in service to the Church. So what’s missing? At approximately $20 billion in assets under management, we are the largest reporting denominational investor in the world—and among the top 100 of all U.S. pension funds. But our name does not reflect this important aspect of our work—helping protect the financial future of over 100,000 participants in the U.S. and around the world.
In 2015, we received approval from our board of directors to rename the agency to be effective in July 2016. We have been working to change the name across all materials, our websites, our signage, participant statements, etc. The transition will continue over the next 18 months, until our new name is reflected on everything we develop and release.
As we considered the options we had to simplify the agency name and include the investments aspect of our work, the name “Wespath” was the logical choice.
Wespath—symbol and symbolism
We developed the name Wespath in 2010 as the brand for our investments division as it began to reach out to UMC affiliated institutions, outside our normal annual conference connections, to increase assets under management.
The name was created with two important elements in mind:
Wes—recognizes and honors John Wesley, the founder of Methodism and a strong advocate for social justice;
Path—refers to our goal of providing participants and institutional clients with a path to follow in achieving retirement, health, and investment objectives.
While the name Wespath honors Wesley, it also implies other Wesleyan philosophical tenets—the importance of physical health, financial security and caring for God’s creation. Wespath reflects our Wesleyan heritage, and the notion of being on the right path in all three areas in which we operate for our retirement and health plan participants, institutional investors and for the UMC. The name Wespath has already achieved name recognition across the UMC through the many UMC-affiliated organizations we now have among our institutional investment clients.
Wespath will be used with our current agency symbol. The symbol embeds the UMC Cross and Flame—continuing to connect us with the Church. Two simply stated words beneath it identify the nature of our work: “Benefits and Investments.”
Our three agency divisions will also reflect the new agency name:
Wespath—Center for Health
path to retirement and financial security
path to personal and missional vitality
path to achieving investment objectives
Caring for those who serve since 1908 is our tagline and it will continue to be, capturing our mission and reflecting our long history in service to UMC clergy and lay.
For more information about our new agency name, contact us at 1-800-851-2201.