News release | Thomas Lawrence
WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. (November 7, 2022) – The California State Teachers’ Retirement System, the world’s largest educator-only pension fund, is pleased to announce the hiring of Kate LeBlanc as retirement readiness director.
In this role, LeBlanc will provide direction on the development and execution of financial education, services and outreach efforts for CalSTRS members and employers; develop and manage a combined $18 million annual program budget; and serve as a senior leadership representative on CalSTRS’ governance councils and organizationwide forums.
LeBlanc joins CalSTRS from the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), where she oversaw customer education and outreach programs including member and employer education, external communications, and internal training services for the contact center and regional office representatives.
“Kate brings a rare combination of leadership, member engagement know-how, and experience in California public pensions,” Chief Benefits Officer Bill Perez said. “Her work with CalPERS speaks for itself, especially her significant role in overseeing instructor-led classes, webcasts, and large events. Having Kate join our team will be of great benefit for both CalSTRS and our members.”
LeBlanc spent nearly a decade at CalPERS, where she held senior leadership positions in customer service and support, and managed teams responsible for budgets totaling nearly $100 million and personnel transactions for more than 900 positions.
Prior to beginning state service, LeBlanc coordinated programs for educational nonprofit organizations and was an eighth grade teacher in New York City. She has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Minnesota and a master’s degree in English Education from the City University of New York.
LeBlanc will report to Perez; her first day is Monday, November 7. She replaces Sandy Blair, who served as retirement readiness director from 2016 until 2022.
“As a former teacher, I am excited about joining CalSTRS and the opportunity to serve California’s public educators with the retirement readiness team,” LeBlanc said. “I look forward to connecting with stakeholders and ensuring CalSTRS members continue to receive top-notch education, resources and services to help plan and enjoy a secure financial future.”
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CalSTRS provides a secure retirement to more than 1 million members and beneficiaries whose CalSTRS-covered service is not eligible for Social Security participation. On average, members who retired in 2020–21 had 25 years of service and a monthly benefit of $4,813. Established in 1913, CalSTRS is the largest educator-only pension fund in the world with $288.6 billion in assets under management as of September 30, 2022. CalSTRS demonstrates its strong commitment to long-term corporate sustainability principles in its annual Sustainability Report. For more information, visit CalSTRS.com.