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Volunteers Go “Above and Beyond”

The annual Above and Beyond Achievement Award (ABAA) celebrates the spirit of volunteerism by recognizing one or more CAS members who have made recent contributions that clearly exceed what is normally and reasonably expected. The CAS has bestowed the 2007 awards to Ralph Blanchard, Raji Bhagavatula, and Robert Campbell.

Ralph Blanchard has made many contributions to the CAS Syllabus of Examinations over the years. Ralph’s background in accounting and audit issues make him particularly well suited to keeping the Insurance Accounting Principles section of the Exam 6 Syllabus up-to-date.   

His primary responsibility, as a Part Specialist on the Syllabus Committee, is to create detailed learning objectives. In addition, Ralph has spent countless hours developing study materials that became part of the Syllabus. Ralph’s latest study note, “Basic Insurance Accounting—Selected Topics” makes it easy for candidates to understand the fundamental concepts of accounting without having to wade through pages of jargon. Other contributions to the Syllabus from Ralph include the papers “Premium Accounting,” published in 2005, and “Accounting Concepts for the Actuary,” published in 2003.

Raji Bhagavatula is recognized for her role in leading a drafting task force of the Actuarial Standards Board Reserving Subcommittee. The subcommittee’s persistence and patience was tested many times during the development of the new ASOP No. 43. The efforts of the subcommittee spanned more than a couple of years—years that were not without debate and controversy. But because of these efforts, the actuarial profession has a new working standard for actuaries.

Robert Campbell is recognized for his role as chair of the Data Management and Information Educational Materials Working Party, which was formed in December 2005 and charged with identifying key educational resources on data issues for actuaries. The output from this working party has been prolific, with a number of work products developed to educate students and practitioners. This Working Party has developed and delivered both basic and professional education materials for actuaries via meeting and seminar presentations, articles in The Actuarial Review, and papers published in the CAS Forum.   

The Above and Beyond Achievement Awards will be presented at the 2007 CAS Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois.   

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