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AFA Advocacy Plus Newsletter

Advocacy Activities – April 2020

The Advocacy & Policy Committee has been busy this month. They met by phone on April 2 for the annual Federal Advocacy Strategy Meeting which typically takes place in DC at the home office of our lobbying firm Capitol Counsel. During this call, the group outlined a strategy for continuing the recruitment of co-sponsors for the Fraternal Resolution which will hopefully kick into gear during the August legislative recess. The value of inviting members of Congress to your in-district community service activities was stressed, and Capitol Counsel will be become more involved in helping fraternals invite and host legislators at your most impactful events.

The Committee also met by phone on April 7 to discuss the CARES Act and was joined by legal counsel Todd Martin and retained DC lobbyists. Committee Chair Cynthia Maleski led a discussion on fraternals eligibility for aid through the Paycheck Protection Program and future programs. A motion was made, seconded and approved to continue to monitor and analyze the COVID-19 laws and regulations through the Alliance’s retained consultants and to provide additional education for members to help them understand opportunities available to fraternals. The Alliance sent fraternal leaders an alert related to this issue on April 2. Related bulletins will be sent to members soon; watch your email for updates.

78 House Co-Sponsors Signed | 28 Senate Co-Sponsors Signed

Alliance Education, Meetings & Governance

Upcoming Webinars

Social Media During a Crisis — These Tools Are Real

April 14: 1:00 – 2:00 CST

Fraternals are often among the first responders during times of crisis and disaster. While the chapter system structure lends itself to the delivering of community service quickly, it has become a challenge during the COVID-19 epidemic. Learn from our two experts how social media can help societies be a bright light in this time of struggle and show that fraternals represent the great American spirit.

Click here to register

Webinar Replays Available:

April 1: Force Majeure Contracts, Providing Grace Periods and Other COVID-19 Impacts

March 26: Coronavirus Leaves, Layoffs & Shelter in Place Orders

2020 Alliance Meeting Schedule — Effects of COVID-19

  • Spring Symposium, May 26-28, 2020 — Postponed.

  • Executive Summit & Annual Business Meeting, September 14-16, 2020 — Postponed.

    Joint Event Planned: The Alliance staff is working with contracted hotels to combine the Symposium with the Executive Summit & Annual Business Meeting on a new date range in late fall, probably November, in Indianapolis. Details will be announced as soon as they are available.

  • Lunch & Learns — Rescheduled. These regional meetings will be planned around the above combined event where possible to keep members connected.

Partnership with LIC – Alliance to Cover Fees for ERM and Accounting Meetings

The LIC hosts a number of events (now virtual for the time being) that cover topics the Alliance does not routinely address. Through a new partnership, the Alliance is happy to announce it will subsidize the registration fees for fraternal executives who wish to participate in these excellent events that are known to foster valuable interaction. Membership in LIC is not required. Upcoming events:

If you would like to register for either of these events, please contact Allison Koppel at, and she will coordinate your participation.

Governance: Board of Directors Quarterly Meeting Recap

Click here to read the summary of the March 18 Board of Directors meeting held by teleconference (originally sent to members March 24.)

Society Updates

Catholic United Financial Hires New CEO

Harald Borrmann, current President & CEO of Catholic United Financial, reports that the Board of Directors officially announced the hiring of Mike Ahles to be the President, CEO and Chair of the Board to become effective upon Harald’s retirement on June 15, 2020.

Sons of Norway Names Christopher Pinkerton CEO

The International Board of the Sons of Norway is pleased to announce Christopher Pinkerton has been named CEO of the organization. The board has evaluated the leadership needs for the growth of the organization and combined the current role of the CEO and the COO into one position.
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Associate Members

Stinson Alert: Small and Mid-Sized Businesses Must Be Cognizant of the Requirements that Accompany CARES Act Relief

On March 27, 2020, the president signed into law the much-anticipated Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). At a price tag of $2 trillion, the legislation is by far the largest relief package ever enacted.

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April 9 Webinar — Macquarie and S & P Offer Complimentary Webinar for Insurance Investment Professionals

As market volatility spikes during record-low yields, insurers have to look further down the curve. This introduces particular risks, causing some investors to rethink their allocations. How might insurers assess and quantify duration, liquidity, and penalty risks while optimizing yield amid challenging market conditions?

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April 13 — askFinancial Wellness Offers Complimentary Webinar for Fraternal Leaders to Help Their Members Understand FFCRA and CARES Act

The number of Federal financial relief measures enacted recently is truly head-spinning. However, the extraordinary level of help available to consumers presents an excellent opportunity for your organization to serve your members on a whole new level.

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April 28 — PNC Institutional Asset Management Offers Complimentary Webinar on Defined Benefit Solutions: Strategic Planning for Adverse Scenarios

Corporations and the defined benefit plans they sponsor have felt the impact of the novel coronavirus— whether through the need for increased contributions, a decrease in funding status directly impacting the balance sheet, or increased Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) premiums. At times like this, it is increasingly important to explore and implement best practices to manage your organization’s defined benefit plan.

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KBRA Assigned Ratings: National Slovak Society of the United States of America

On March 6, 2020, Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) assigns an insurance financial strength rating (IFSR) to National Slovak Society of the United States of America (NSS Life or the Society).

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KBRA Assigned Ratings: Gleaner Life Insurance Society

On April 3, 2020, Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) assigns an insurance financial strength rating to Gleaner Life Insurance Society, a fraternal benefit society domiciled in Adrian, Michigan. The Outlook for the rating is Stable.

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Member Services

Compliance Information

Compliance Updates by State from First Consulting

Check out this latest chart from First Consulting on COVID-19 updates and much more.

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COVID Resources

Alliance COVID Resource Page

Review this page often for updates. The latest entry, provided by our friends at Foresters, is a link to NAIC’s COVID-19 Information Request Template.

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Local Lodge Data and COVID Relief

The Alliance is currently collecting members’ Local Lodge data. This important information is used to inform legislators, regulators and other important audiences about the vast contributions fraternals provide to their communities. Thanks to Ladies Pennsylvania Slovak Catholic Union for being the first to submit! We are also asking societies to keep track of any COVID-19 Aid that your organization is providing to members and communities in 2020. This cumulative data will be used for advocacy purposes to demonstrate the significant impact of fraternals during times of crisis. Please email with any COVID-related relief stories we can feature in the May Advocacy Plus newsletter.

How to Protect Yourself in the Age of Videoconferencing Calls

Zoom calls, for one, aren’t as private as you may think. Here are some ways to protect yourself as we work — and play — at home during the pandemic.

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Insurance Industry News

ACLI CEO Talks About Life Insurers’ Response to COVID-19

Tune in to hear ACLI CEO Susan Neely and AALU CEO Marc Cadin discuss the carrier response to the current crisis.

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COVID-19 Deaths May Not Do Much to Life Insurers' Earnings: Securities Analyst

Ryan Krueger sees the base case being more like a terrible seasonal flu than like the 1918 pandemic.

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Industry Groups Urge States To Temporarily Ease Licensing Requirements

Leaders of four insurance industry organizations have sent letters to every state insurance licensing authority requesting temporary licensing accommodations for producers who cannot complete regular licensing requirements because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

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Thanks to Our Spring Symposium Sponsors

Connect NOW Sponsor:

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Education Sponsors:

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Optimum Life Reinsurance Logo Securian Asset Management Logo

American Fraternal Alliance
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