The San Bernardino County Employees’ Retirement Association (SBCERA) is at the top of its class, that class being the 2013 Industry Innovators as determined by Asset International’s Chief Investment Officer (aiCIO) magazine.

“Winning [the 4th Annual Industry Innovation Award for “Public Pension Plan Below $15 Billion] is immensely rewarding,” said SBCERA Chief Investment Officer Don Pierce. “We are excited about the direction we’re taking and honored by the award.”

SBCERAThe award highlights the most innovative and positive work being done for, and at, the world’s largest pensions, endowments, foundations, and sovereign wealth funds. SBCERA is in good company; winners in other categories included United Technologies, United Parcel Service (UPS), The Kresge Foundation and General Mills. As part of the judging process and magazine article, aiCIO cited the fact that SBCERA recorded a 15.4 percent return year-to-date and a three-year annualized return of 12.6 percent through an innovative strategy based on income-oriented investing and using options to manage risk.

“This award demonstrates California county retirement systems are indeed worldwide industry leaders among public pension institutional investors,” said State Association of County Retirement Systems President Doug Rose. The award was accepted by SBCERA Trustees Dawn Stafford and Louis Fiorino on Dec. 9 at an awards banquet at the New York Public Library “Our Board, our staff and our consultants share a strategic vision that we are very proud of,” said Stafford.

SBCERA is an award-winning multiple employer public retirement system in California with over $7 billion in assets under management. SBCERA administers benefits and services for nearly 33,000 members and beneficiaries, commensurate with their years of service and compensation. The Board of Retirement’s responsibilities and functions are governed by the applicable provisions of the California Government Code, along with the By-Laws and regulations of SBCERA.