Press Release: Church Alliance Thanks Congressional Champions on Behalf of Over 92,000 UMC Participants and Others

For Immediate Release
April 26, 2016

Contact: M. Colette Nies, Managing Director, Communications
(847) 866-4296 or cnies@gbophb.org

Glenview, IL—The Church Alliance is a coalition of the chief executive officers of 37 church benefit programs, chaired by the chief executive of the UMC’s General Board of Pension and Health Benefits (GBPHB), General Secretary Barbara Boigegrain. It includes mainline Protestant denominations, two branches of Judaism and Catholic dioceses, schools and institutions. The benefit programs provided by these organizations cover more than 1 million clergy, lay workers and their family members across the country.

The Church Alliance works to ensure that benefit-related legislative and regulatory initiatives fully address the unique nature of church benefit and retirement plans. As a result, over the years, the Church Alliance has been involved with numerous pieces of legislation (and legislative proposals) that directly impact church benefit plans and programs. Through GBPHB, as a member of the Church Alliance, more than 92,000 UMC clergy and lay workers benefit from the work of this coalition.

Congressional Partnership
Representatives of the Church Alliance visited Washington D.C. in March 2016 to personally thank members of Congress whose work was critical to the enactment of the Church Plan Clarification Act (CPCA) provisions, as part of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015. Read more about what the CPCA did for GBPHB’s participants and plan sponsors here:  www.wespath.org/assets/1/7/4891.pdf

Ms. Boigegrain is shown (photo attached) presenting a plaque of appreciation to Senator Ben Cardin
(D-MD), original Senate co-sponsor of the CPCA. Ms. Boigegrain also met with and presented plaques to several other members and legislative staff from both houses of Congress who were instrumental in supporting the CPCA. She thanked them on behalf of the Church Alliance for their efforts and commitments to the retirement security of millions of church workers.

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About GBPHB
The General Board of Pension and Health Benefits (GBPHB) is a not-for-profit administrative agency of The United Methodist Church, with Church-authorized fiduciary responsibility for the benefit plans it administers and the assets it invests.

Prudent investment management decisions are an ongoing, long-term priority, supporting benefit plans for over 92,000 participants and approximately $20 billion in assets managed on their behalf, and for many United Methodist-affiliated endowments, foundations and other institutions. This fiduciary obligation reflects the stated values of the Church and helps ensure financial, environmental and social sustainability across all investments.

GBPHB is the largest reporting faith-based pension fund and among the top 100 pension funds in the United States.  As a sustainable investor, GBPHB is committed to active ownership through corporate and public policy engagement, proxy voting and the management of excessive sustainability risk. Through its Positive Social Purpose Lending program, GBPHB invests in affordable housing, community development and expanded loan opportunities for disadvantaged communities worldwide.

GBPHB General Secretary Barbara Boigegrain presenting plaque to Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD)

 

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