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Meet the new CPBI Chairperson

During the CPBI Annual General Meeting that took place October 6, 2017 in St-John’s, NL, CPBI members elected Ryan Johnston from the Atlantic Region to be the new Chair of the CPBI Board of Directors. CPBI National team connected with Mr. Johnston over a phone interview to learn more about him and his future plans as Chair of the CPBI Board of Directors. 

Tell us about yourself and your work and how you started with the CPBI.
I have been a member of CPBI since 1998 and have been on the Atlantic Region executive since 1999 or so. I have participated in this terrific organization almost since starting my career as an HR and benefits professional more than 20 years ago. While my core background was as a plan sponsor working in HR, I now work on the plan provider side of the business. Having both perspectives brings an interesting and unique vantage-point to issues and hopefully rounds out what I can bring to an organization like CPBI.
What does the CPBI add to your professional life? If you can provide concrete examples that members can identify to.
CPBI has been instrumental in my own career as I’ve broadened my network over the years at industry functions and events. One of the things that I personally like best about CPBI is the opportunity to network with others in both similar and diverse roles. CPBI provides a perfect forum for exchanging ideas and learning industry practices that work.

Define 3 areas or more you like to focus on during your mandate.
I see three immediate items within CPBI that require ongoing work and support:
1) Membership – CPBI is a member-driven organization and we need to grow out our membership through support of our regional councils with timely industry events.
2) Plan sponsor engagement is always important. We’d like to continue to encourage strong plan sponsor attendance across the country.
3) Work with the Board on creating a strategic plan that will position CPBI for success for many years to come.

Should CPBI Members expect new initiatives?

Over the months to come, the CPBI Board will be reviewing our mandate and slate of activities to continue to support the best programming possible to our members across the country.  We’ll consider the current way of doing things and look for input on how we can improve and enhance our offerings in all of our regions.  Please reach out to me with any ideas or discussion points.

What would you say to an industry professional just starting out?

As for industry professionals just starting out wondering if they should be part of CPBI, I would highly encourage you to participate and even think about joining your regional council.  This was my personal journey.  In many respects, our younger members are some of the most engaged within CPBI and have much to offer.  This creates the opportunity for long-lasting partnerships between those new to the industry and those a little more ‘seasoned.’  The sharing of networks and ideas is what CPBI is all about, so don’t hesitate to step-up.

Two personal notes: I’d like to take this opportunity to thank our National office for the important work that they do.  These are the behind-the-doors worker bees of CPBI that often go unnoticed.  Lena, Danielle, Christine and Peter – my thanks to each of you for your engagement and dedication to CPBI.

I would also like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and enjoyable holiday and New Year. Make sure to take some time to spend with family and focus on the things that are really important in life. Looking forward to a great 2018 together!

Ryan Johnston is resident of PEI, you can find his contact information under the Atlantic Region in the CPBI online Members' Directory. 

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