Jean-Claude Ménard, former Chief Actuary of Canada, and recipient of this year’s President’s Award at act19, the CIA annual conference, is the featured guest on the latest Seeing Beyond Risk podcast.
Hosted by CIA President Marc Tardif, the no-holds-barred conversation delves into a candid and enlightening look at Mr. Ménard’s rise to the top. Speaking openly on the highs and lows of his experience, broad challenges and achievements of the profession, and an enduring legacy, Mr. Ménard’s words bear a wisdom and humility that inspires.
“My legacy is the credibility I built for the Office of the Chief Actuary. I earned the trust of all the clients I served over the last two decades,” he says. “This is a precious gift that I will cherish forever. The real legacy is the commitment of hundreds of public servants who believe strongly in the creation of the CPP, its financial sustainability, and the expansion to the agreement in 2016.”
Mr. Menard also discusses the importance of recognizing the actuarial role in new and emerging practice areas, such as climate change. Understanding that the profession’s commitment to the well-being of Canadians goes beyond the traditional practice, Mr. Ménard calls on actuaries and the Institute to act by informing discussions related to the topic.
“Climate changes are a serious issue,” he says. “I’d like to see more actuaries involved in that domain. It seems to me that this subject should become one of the most important projects for the Canadian Institute of Actuaries in the years to come.”
Mr. Ménard points to the work of the Office of the Chief Actuary, which, alongside the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), produces a yearly report on sustainable investing. The report demonstrates how environmental, social, and governance factors are incorporated in the way they invest, placing special emphasis on the impact climate change presents to existing processes and practice.
During his time as Chief Actuary, Mr. Ménard worked diligently to instil values of leadership, integrity, and professionalism in his colleagues – attributes that have established OSFI as the highly credible and impartial organization it is, both at home and abroad.
After 20 years as Chief Actuary of Canada, Mr. Ménard believes it is credibility and maintaining impartiality in all dealings with clients that lie at the heart and success of the profession.
“Follow the same path,” he encourages all actuaries. “Always follow the national professional standards of practice in all your professional dealings.”
If you have any questions or ideas for future podcasts, contact Bonnie Robinson, English Editor.