Atlanta Public School CFO Chuck Burbridge accepts position as Executive Director of the Chicago Teachers Pension Fund

chuck burbridgeThe Chicago Teachers Pension & Retirement Fund (CTPF) announced today that Chuck Burbridge will become the Executive Director of CTPF effective March 16th. Burbridge has served as the Chief Financial Officer for the Atlanta Public Schools since August 2007.

Burbridge will replace Peter A. Driscoll who has been serving as the Interim Executive Director for CTPF and who had previously announced he would be leaving  the interim position in March.

CTPF, with an administrative budget of approximately $10-12 million, manages the pension funds for the teachers in the Chicago school district and has assets under management of approximately $10.8 billion and actuarial liabilities of approximately $19.5 billion. The $9.5 billion actuarial funding shortfall leaves the pension plan at a 51.6% funded level. Burbridge will have his work cut out for him as he tackles the significant deficit in funding.

Per the press release,

“Our trustees are confident Mr. Burbridge’s extensive, senior-level financial experience in both the public and private sectors will be a valuable asset to the fund going forward,” said Jay C. Rehak, president of the CTPF Board of Trustees. “In addition, Chuck’s leadership and strong background working in Chicago and Illinois will help us navigate the many challenges and opportunities facing the CTPF in the current pension fund environment.”

“I’m excited to be leading the Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund into its next chapter,” said Mr. Burbridge, the incoming executive director of the Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund. “For more than 100 years the fund has been a key part of Chicago and the education community. I look forward to serving our 63,000 members and working with the trustees and the staff to ensure that our pension plan’s funding gets back on track, so we are able to deliver on the promise made to our members.”

In Atlanta, Burbridge has had experience with underfunded pension plans and has worked with the Atlanta Public School Pension Task Force to develop alternatives for enhancing the funding of APS’ portion of the City Pension Plan. Currently, APS’ portion of the City Pension Plan is only 20% funded and has an actuarial liability of approximately $530 million.

Per his bio at the APS website,

Chuck Burbridge joined Atlanta Public Schools as Chief Financial Officer in August 2007. Prior to moving to Atlanta, he served as Chief Financial Officer for the Los Angeles Unified School District, the nation’s largest independent school district with approximately 700,000 students and an annual operating budget of over $7.5 billion. He has also held the Deputy CFO position at Chicago Public Schools, was also the Deputy Chief Financial Officer for Cook County in Illinois, and was the Chief Economist for the Illinois Economic and Fiscal Commission.

A Certified Information Systems Auditor, Mr. Burbridge received his Bachelors and Masters degree in economics for the University of Illinois. He is a member of the Council of Great City Councils and serves on the Microsoft K-12 Advisory Council.

I have had the privilege of getting to know Chuck well. He is a man of impeccable integrity, has a deep understanding of education finance and is extremely well liked by his staff, peers and the community at large.

We will miss his leadership in APS and we wish him well as he returns home to Chicago.

[Follow me on Twitter @Financial_Decon & Facebook]

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