The Management Employees Pension Plan (MEPP) was originally established in 1972 as the Public Service Management Pension Plan for management employees of the Alberta government and approved agencies, boards and commissions. In 1993, new legislation was passed that retroactively split the plan into two separate plans: MEPP and the Public Service Management (Closed Membership) Pension Plan (PSM(CM)PP or “Closed Plan”). The latter plan relates to the entitlements of former managers not in active service as of August 1, 1992.
The Board has legislated responsibilities to MEPP and to the PSM(CM)PP. The mandate of the Board, as established under the PSPPA, Schedule 5, section 3, and Schedule 6 is to:
1.1 advise the Minister on any pension matter that is of interest to persons receiving or entitled in the future to receive benefits under MEPP;
1.2 consult with the Minister with respect to:
1.2.1 amending or repealing and replacing the Management Employees Pension Plan Regulation (the "Plan Rules");
1.2.2 conducting an actuarial valuation with respect to MEPP;
1.2.3 conducting an actuarial valuation with respect to the Closed Plan;
1.2.4 changes proposed to the Public Sector Pension Plans (Legislative Provisions) Regulation;
1.2.5 the cost to be charged for the administration of MEPP; and
1.2.6 the cost to be charged for the administration of the Closed Plan.
1.3 set general policy guidelines such as the Investment Policy on the investment and management of the MEPP Fund that it considers should be followed; and
1.4 set general policy guidelines on the administration of MEPP that it considers should be followed.
Board Investment Committee
The responsibility of the Board’s Investment Committee (IC) is to review the investment performance of the Plan’s fund with Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) with the assistance of the Board’s investment consultant. The IC also reviews MEPP's Investment Policy (IP), including the asset mix, on an annual basis and makes recommendations to the Board on changes it believes are required to prudently manage the Plan.
The responsibility of the Board's Investment Committee is to:
Monitor and evaluate the investment performance of the fund on a comprehensive basis (quarterly), by using performance investment reports requested of and compiled by AIMCo and/or external advisors;
Recommend contracting of external investment advisors;
Review results of a detailed assessment of AIMCo on an annual basis;
Assess the cost-effectiveness of investment strategies, structures, and processes;
Review reporting on compliance with the Board's policies, and with applicable laws and regulations;
Monitor changes in the Plan's membership characteristics, liability structure and contribution flows that may impact the Plan's investment strategies;
Commission analysis or reviews of specific investment issues related to the Plan;
Provide minutes to the Board once each quarter on the highlights of the Committee's activities and findings;
Complete an annual review of the Board's investment policies that includes the investment policy and the statement of investment beliefs; and
Advise and make recommendations to the Board on the:
MEPP Investment Policy;
Investment Management Agreement with AIMCo;
Strategies, practices and processes to manage the investment risks of the Plan or to improve the effectiveness of investment governance; and
Any other investment-related matter as requested by the Board or deemed appropriate by the Committee.
The Board has seven members, comprised of three employee nominees, three people nominated by the Government of Alberta and one non-voting member nominated by the Public Service Commissioner's Office. The PSPPA's Legislative Provisions Regulation requires that the offices of Board and Vice-Chair rotate every two years between employer and employee nominees.
That Plan members and employers have a pension plan that is affordable and sustainable.
To provide prudent governance over the Plan's assets and liabilities as well as ensuring effective Plan administration.
MEP Board Members
Dale Beesley, Board Chair
Mr. Beesley is Assistant Deputy Minister of the Public Safety Division in Alberta Municipal Affairs. He has over 20 years in government in various roles, including Executive Director of Pension Policy in Alberta Treasury Board and Finance. In that role Mr. Beesley led the development of policy and provided advice on public sector pension plans in Alberta, including the Management Employees Pension Plan. He is a chartered management accountant and has led numerous large-scale projects in government.
Mr. Beesley was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board as an employee nominee, effective March 17, 2020. His term expires on March 28, 2026.
Brittany Jones, Board Member
Brittany Jones is a Senior Manager of Portfolio Analytics and Research with the Government of Alberta. She has a broad knowledge of financial markets and stakeholder requirements and experience with investment policy and advising investment committees. Brittany’s prior experience includes work in capital markets for the government and four years with Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo). Brittany has also earned the Chartered Alternative Asset Analyst designation.
Brittany was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board as an employee nominee, effective June 23, 2021. Her term expires on June 22, 2024.
Shannon Patershuk, Investment Committee Chair
Ms. Patershuk is an actuarial consultant in Edmonton with extensive professional experience in financial risk management, communications, calculating pension plan valuations, and appeal consultations (including as a witness) in various fields. Her financial risk management experience includes many senior management positions with a major insurance company, working with major consulting firms in pension and benefits specialities, consultation and communications with benefits committees and boards, and organizing industry conferences. She has worked with a diverse clientele spanning many industries, including non-profit organizations and associations.
As an active member of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries (CIA), she is recognized for her active participation on volunteer committees. In addition to her professional qualifications as a Fellow of the CIA and Society of Actuaries (SOA), she qualified for the actuarial designation in Enterprise Risk Management (Chartered Enterprise Risk Analyst) from the SOA.
She is a graduate of the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Commerce Hons. Degree, majoring in Actuarial Science and Marketing. More recently, she achieved her MBA in Community Economic Development from Cape Breton University. Shannon has resided in Edmonton with her family for over 30 years.
Ms. Patershuk was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board as an Employer nominee, effective January 1, 2018. Her current term expires on December 31, 2025.
Deborah Polny, Investment Committee Vice-Chair
Ms. Polny completed her law degree from the University of Alberta (with Distinction) and currently holds the position of Legal Counsel & Corporate Secretary at Alberta Blue Cross. In this role, she is responsible for advising on a variety of legal issues that affect the organization. As Corporate Secretary, she has extensive involvement in the organization’s corporate governance program. She has over 20 years of legal experience with leading organizations in Alberta including ATB Financial, Alberta Blue Cross and a prominent Edmonton law firm.
Having served as Assistant General Counsel at ATB Financial, she gained knowledge in the financial services industry, provided governance advice, was a member of its operational risk committee, and was the legal advisor responsible for development of the organization’s derivative program. She gained extensive experience with pension plans as a member of ATB’s Retirement Committee and Defined Contribution Committee (and through continuous learning and development). She has been a guest speaker at national conferences on corporate governance issues and received her Accredited Director designation (Acc. Dir) through the Institute of Chartered Secretaries’ Association (iCSA) Canada. She received her certificate in Foundations of Trust Management Standards (FTMS) and Advanced Trust Management Standards (ATMS) (Level 1) from the International Foundation of Employee Benefits. She is a member of the Legal and Legislative Committee of the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association Inc.
Ms. Polny is aware of the importance that public sector governance plays to Albertans and looks forward to serving the Board. She was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board, as an Employer nominee, effective January 1, 2018. Her current term expires on December 31, 2023.
Mr. Stelmach is a senior vice president and portfolio manager at Franklin Bissett Investment Management. He is co-manager of Franklin Bissett Canadian Dividend Fund (2012) and Franklin Bissett Dividend Income Fund (2012). Mr. Stelmach's analyst responsibilities include coverage of the energy sector.
Past duties have included responsibility for research coverage for various high yield equity securities, including equities within the healthcare, industrial, and utility sectors. In 2006, Mr. Stelmach joined Franklin Bissett as an income trust analyst. In 2009 he was named vice president and portfolio manager.
Prior to joining Franklin Bissett, Mr. Stelmach was employed by BMO Nesbitt Burns (now BMO Capital Markets) for six years, most recently as a vice president and research analyst specializing in the royalty and income trust sector.
Mr. Stelmach holds a bachelor of commerce degree in finance, with distinction, from the University of Alberta. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder.
Mr. Stelmach was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board as an Employer nominee. His current term expires on March 28, 2026.
Sherri Wilson, Board Member
Sherri has spent more than two decades in the Government of Alberta and served in a number of executive roles in the ministries of Treasury Board and Finance, Health, Executive Council, and (former) Human Services. She has extensive experience in the social and health sector and she is proud to provide leadership on services for families and children in Alberta as the Deputy Minister of Children’s Services.
Prior to her current, role, Sherri was the Superintendent for Insurance, Pensions and Financial Institutions with Treasury Board and Finance and also served as Incident Commander of the Health Emergency Operations Centre during the critical early days of the pandemic.
Sherri has a bachelor of science from Dalhousie University.
Her current term expires on June 22, 2024.
Kristin Ward Diaz
Kristin Ward Diaz, Board Member
Kristin has fifteen years of public and non-profit sector leadership experience. She is known for her expertise in policy development, facilitation, public participation, community development, non-profit board governance and diversity and inclusion. In her current role as Executive Director, Workforce Policy with the Alberta Public Service Commission, Kristin leads policy development initiatives that supports the current and future workforce. Her team is largely focused on strategic policy coordination, job evaluation, compensation, group benefits and pension policy.
Prior to her current role, Kristin was the Director, Status of Women where she co-led a variety of collaborative family violence and prevention and women’s economic participation initiatives. Kristin also supported the government’s pandemic response as an Alberta Health Emergency Operations Centre team member in 2021.
The bulk of Kristin’s public sector experience was with Alberta Culture’s Community Development Unit. Kristin led a high performing team that supported and cultivated Alberta’s non-profit sector organization and leadership capacity. She also played a key leadership role in the design of authentic and meaningful facilitation stakeholder engagement projects that informed the development of numerous Government of Alberta policies.
She is an active mentor and volunteer #IamRemarkable facilitator.
Kristin holds a Bachelor of Arts Honours and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Saskatchewan.
Kirstin was appointed to the Management Employees Pension Board as the Public Service Commission representative effective August 18, 2022. Her term expires on July 31, 2025.