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Life Insurers Mobilize for 2020

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U.S. life insurers’ top trade group, the American Council of Life Insurers, has named Dan Houston to be the organization’s chairman in 2020, as the nation moves toward the general elections.

Houston is the chairman, president and chief executive officer of Principal Financial Group Inc. of Des Moines, Iowa, a life insurer and asset manager with about $700 billion in assets under management.

Houston took the gavel from the 2019 chairman — JoAnn Martin, the CEO of Ameritas Mutual Holding Company — today in Boston, at the ACLI’s annual meeting.

(Related: ACLI President Opposes 8-State Reg BI Challenge)

Martin talked about the importance of the ACLI as an organization life insurers can use to learn from one another, according to an ACLI account of her remarks.

Houston talked about the importance of life insurers to Americans’ lives.

“This industry makes promises every single day,” Houston said, according to the ACLI. “And we make good on those promises.”

ACLI President Susan Neely said life insurers help provide stability for families. “At a moment when nothing stays the same, when people want a sense of protection, we are there. As we always have been. Guaranteed.”

The ACLI also announced that Ted Mathas, the chairman and CEO officer of New York Life Insurance Company, will be the incoming 2020 chairman-elect, and that J. Scott Davison, the chairman, president and CEO of OneAmerica Financial Partners Inc., will be the incoming 2021 chairman-elect.

For photos of five top ACLI leaders, see the photos in the slideshow above. Wiggle your pointer over the image to make the control arrows show up.

The ACLI’s annual meeting started Sunday and is set to end Tuesday.

In addition to the ACLI’s own leaders, the list of speakers on the general session podium this morning included. former White House Chief of Staff General John Kelly and Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker.


The ACLI has played a key role in shaping annuity, pension and retirement policymaking at the federal and state level as well as policymaking related to life insurance, disability insurance and long-term care insurance.

In 2017, the ACLI was part of a successful effort to soften some life insurance tax change provisions in early versions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act legislation.

The ACLI recently formed a State Influence Program partnership with the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA). Through that program, the ACLI and NAIFA will focus on shaping legislation and regulations in California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts and New Jersey, according to NAIFA.

The ACLI reported a $534,946 net gain for 2017 on $45 million in revenue and $58 million in assets, according to the most recent Form 990 annual report available for the ACLI at

The ACLI controls the International Pension Foundation, Americans to Protect Family Security and the ACLI Political Action Committee, according to the Form 990.

— Read Wells Fargo Agrees to Sell Retirement Unit for $1.2 Billion, on ThinkAdvisor.

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