2.4 Trustee Orientation and Education

Meeting room


The Board finds that it is critical for the sound governance of IMRF for Trustees to be fully informed with regard to the nature, purposes, structure, operational systems and processes of IMRF. The Board further finds that it is important that Trustees are provided with education and training in areas that will facilitate the performance of their governance and oversight responsibilities as Trustees and fiduciaries.

The Board believes the following orientation and education policies will increase Trustee understanding and effectiveness:

New Trustee Orientation Policy

  1. The Executive Director will develop an in-depth New Trustee Orientation Program designed to fully inform new Trustees of the key functions of IMRF and their responsibilities as Trustee.
  2. It is preferable for new Trustees, as part of their fiduciary responsibilities to IMRF, to participate in the New Trustee Orientation Program following their election or appointment. If training cannot take place before their first Board meeting, then they are encouraged to schedule suitable time thereafter.
  3. The orientation program will address, at a minimum, the following:
    1. History and background of IMRF.
    2. The governance role of the Board and the management role of the executive staff ofIMRF.
    3. The obligations of a fiduciary and the duties of loyalty and prudence in the service as Trustees to IMRF.
    4. The structure and model for the management and operation of IMRF.
    5. Introduction to the executive management team and other staff as determined by the Executive Director.
    6. The Illinois laws establishing IMRF and the application of other State and federal laws.
    7. A description and tour of IMRF offices.
    8. A briefing on the fiduciary duties and liabilities of Trustees and other fiduciaries of IMRF.
    9. A briefing on conflicts of interest and ethics laws.
    10. A review of the Board Governance Manual and other relevant information and documentation.
    11. A review of general actuarial funding terminology and principles and the most recent actuarial reports.
    12. A review of general institutional investment principles, adopted investment policies; current asset allocation; strategies and performance measurement principles.
    13. A review of the reporting and disclosure requirements of IMRF.
    14. A review of the legal (State and federal) and political environment in which IMRF operates.
    15. A review of the current strategic plan for IMRF and new issues, trends and developments affecting IMRF.
    16. A review of the Board’s current Committee structure.
    17. A review of the current benefit structure.

Trustee Education Policy

  1. Each Trustee is responsible for evaluating his or her own educational needs and obtaining knowledge in specific subject matters. The Executive Director will assist you in determining which conferences or seminars meet your educational needs.
  2. Trustees are encouraged to attend select conferences and seminars relating to:
    1. Investment issues and trends
    2. Pension and benefits design
    3. Fiduciary management of employee benefit trusts
    4. Actuarial concepts
    5. Other subjects related to the oversight of IMRF
  3. The Executive Director will provide the Board information on available conferences and seminars each month.
  4. A list of conferences and seminars attended by Trustees shall be maintained and distributed to fellow Trustees. Trustees are encouraged to furnish staff copies of conference or seminar materials which will be developed into a reference guide.

Reimbursement of Education Expenses

Reimbursement of travel-related expenses for Trustee orientation and education will be in accordance with the IMRF Travel Policy.

The Travel Policy also specifies the number of events which may be attended each year.