I have developed an actuarial, legal, financial and public policy foundation of understanding and curiosity, and have fine-tuned my research, communication and project management skills.
I am considered a legal, financial and social gerontologist, and my areas of expertise include:
longevity concerns and methods of financing long term care and general retirement income for aging populations (at the macro level); and
financial, social and psychological transitions into retirement, proper planning for property, health and end of life decisions, and mental capacity issues (at the micro level).
Career Arc and Major Accomplishments
I attended the East Islip High School in Long Island, New York, and then the State University of New York at Albany and earned a BS degree in Applied Statistics.
I served in numerous leadership positions in High School, including editor of the school newspaper, president of the music department, and president of the math club.
As a percussionist, I was selected as a high school student to perform in the all-Suffolk County Orchestra, the all-Suffolk County Jazz Ensemble, and the all-New York State Wind Ensemble & Orchestra. I also taught music and percussion to junior high school students.
As the winner of the All County Science Fair, I served as a summer intern in the Pathology Department of the State University of New York at Stoney Brook.
In college, I started working in the mathematics department as an intern as part of my work-study scholarship, but after that obligation ended, I was hired by the department as an independent consultant to help with any special projects and conferences they were hosting.
I was a D.J. at the college radio station, and served as Associate Program Director in my senior year. I also managed a local record and CD store, that was part of a larger national chain.
In 1987, I began my career as a pension plan consultant and worked for various actuarial consulting firms in New York City. As I realized the importance of professional certifications, I became an Enrolled Actuary, and also earned Chartered Financial Consultant, Registered Representative (FINRA Series 7 and 63), and New York State Life Insurance Broker professional designations.
I was recognized early on by my more seasoned colleagues as a natural trainer and supervisor, and as someone who can draft simple letters to clients that communicated complicated actuarial matters.
I refocused my career in 1996 by moving to Chicago to attend The John Marshall Law School.
I was selected by the American Bar Association’s Tax Section as its law student representative and liaison.
I participated as a student competitor in two inter-scholastic moot court competitions.
I was the first law student to chair a Chicago Bar Association Young Lawyers Section substantive committee.
I received the Student Ambassador of the Year scholarship from the Dean at the graduation ceremony.
Upon graduation from law school in 2000 with a JD and LLM in Employee Benefits, I immediately started teaching as an adjunct professor at John Marshall while working full time as an ERISA Associate in a large law firm. In 2001, I was asked to serve as the Associate Director of the graduate Employee Benefits programs on a part-time basis, so I began to simultaneously work on a part-time basis as a legal consultant at a national actuarial firm. In 2005, I became the full-time Associate Director of both the graduate Employee Benefits and the graduate Tax Law programs, and at that point, expanded my teaching, scholarship and service to position myself as a viable candidate for an invitation to join the tenured faculty.
As a member of the American Bar Association's Tax Section, I was among a group of 5 or 6 colleagues who developed its Young Lawyers Forum, and I took the lead in helping to develop its Law Student Tax Challenge.
I presented my first paper at an international conference (the World Congress of Actuaries).
Although not a full time member of the faculty, the Dean allowed me to develop and teach classes that interested me and to participate in faculty committee governance and other institutional service.
I was an instructor at numerous internal IRS training programs for their Employee Plans agents.
I began serving simultaneously in leadership positions at many different professional organizations, thus further developing effective time-management and project-management skills, and also some proficiency in arbitration, negotiation, delegation and other traits required for leaders within different organizational bureaucracies.
In 2007, instead of accepting an invitation to join John Marshall’s faculty as an assistant professor, I decided to pursue a Master’s degree at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy Studies, assuming that such an offer to join the tenured faculty would still be available upon graduation.
I served on the editorial board of the Chicago Policy Review.
I voluntary wrote a Masters dissertation on the effect of a consumption tax regime on pension savings.
I wrote a text book and a BNA Bloomberg Tax Management portfolio.
When I graduated in 2009, I restored my full-time status at John Marshall, and was promoted to Director of the Elder Law Program, but the intervening economy had eliminated the possibility of a tenured faculty position.
I serve as the American Director of the Sino American Research Center for an Aging Population, a joint venture between John Marshall and the East China University of Political Science and Law, Shanghai, China.
I serve as faculty coach and judge for numerous intra- and inter-scholastic moot court and negotiations competitions, as an advisor for J.D. and LL.M. level independent research papers, and as a mentor to law students and newly admitted attorneys.
I participated in many national and international conferences dealing with legal issues with aging, financing retirement, and adult guardianship, such as the annual Illinois Governor’s Conference on Aging, the Third World Congress on Adult Guardianship, the annual American Society on Aging conference, and the annual Law & Society meeting.
I participated in the drafting of the Chicago Declaration, and was part of the John Marshall delegation presenting our view for a Convention on the Human Rights of Older Persons at the fifth and sixth annual meetings of the United Nation’s Open-Ended Committee meetings on the Rights of Older Persons.
I was asked to participate as a member of the Data Safety Monitoring Board for a National Institute of Health-funded suicide intervention project in Chicago’s Chinese community, organized through Rush University School of Medicine.
In 2012, I began matriculation in the PhD program in Disability Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Applied Sciences; however, due to personal emergencies and opportunities, I withdrew from the program in 2015 after taking several successive leaves of absence.