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CalPERS 101: How the Board Protects Your Interests

Decorative image of Board room table

The CalPERS Board of Administration meets regularly to enact policies and provide guidance on the administration and investment of CalPERS’ funds. Through this work, the Board protects the best interests of CalPERS members like you. Here’s some of the ways Board members do this.

Transparency and Accountability

The Board operates under several rules and restrictions to ensure that funds are used appropriately. These rules are posted on the CalPERS website under the Governance and Policies page, which documents the Board’s fiduciary duty. The Board’s actions are also recorded and the videos are available on the Board Meetings page. Here, you can access materials used in meetings, so you have the same information as the Board.

Long-Term View

One of the Board’s main goals is to use CalPERS investments to strengthen the pension fund, and ensure that we can continue to serve you a higher quality of health care for a longer period. To do this, the Board reviews decades of investment data to better analyze economic and market trends, allowing it to make more informed decisions on where to invest.

This investment data also allows the Board to focus on a few areas in the short-term to work toward the long-term goal of strengthening the overall fund. You can access this analysis on the Serving Those Who Serve California page, which highlights current goals the Board is working toward and provides historical data to better understand how the fund is doing.

California Community Focus

Another focus of the Board is understanding the role CalPERS pensions play in California’s overall economic health. CalPERS works with organizations across the state, paying pensions to more than 775,000 retirees and beneficiaries. Those members then spend money in their local economies, allowing CalPERS to play a role in supporting small businesses and jobs. To find out more, visit our Economic Impacts of CalPERS Pensions in California, FY 2020-21 report.

Cyclical Review Processes

The Board uses a detailed review process called Asset Liability Management, or ALM, to predict and prepare for fluctuations in investments and the market to ensure the long-term sustainability of pension payments. Each ALM cycle lasts four years, during which the Board receives regular updates. To find out more, visit the Asset Liability Management page or access the CalPERS Affiliate Fund Asset Liability Management Webinar.

Learn More

The Board is vigilant in its focus on strengthening CalPERS’ investments, ensuring that the benefits you’ve worked so hard for will be there when you retire. You can learn more about the work Board members do via the Board of Administration page or by participating in the next Board meeting.