American Benefits Council
Benefits Byte


June 16, 2014

The Benefits Byte is the American Benefits Council’s regular e-mail and online newsletter for members only, providing timely reports on legislative, regulatory and judicial developments, along with updates on the Council’s activities in support of employer-sponsored benefit plans.

The Benefits Byte is published by the American Benefits Council, based on staff reports and edited by Jason Hammersla, Council director of communications. Contact information for Council staff related to specific topics can be found at the end of each story.

Click here to read past issues on the Benefits Byte Archive page.

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Council Enhances Communications Team; New Email System Coming Soon

Communications Staff Developments

In an effort to expand and enhance communications among Council members, lawmakers and the American public, the American Benefits Council has made a number of exciting changes.

The Council is pleased to welcome Jessica Chirico as our new communications assistant. Chirico will support Jason Hammersla, who has been promoted to senior director of communications. Hammersla will continue to provide strategic and tactical leadership, while Chirico will develop and implement a social media plan, assist with outreach to news media and contribute to the Council’s growing suite of membership services and publications.

Hammersla has been with the Council since his graduation from college in 1999 and assumed the role of communications director in 2007. In that time he has been the primary author and editor of the Benefits Byte and has overseen the Council’s website, media relations and webinar programming, among other duties.

Chirico is a recent graduate of East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, and was a member of the inaugural class of the ECU Honors College, as well as an EC Scholar, the premiere academic merit scholarship offered at ECU. She previously worked as the undergraduate coordinator of advancement and special projects within the Honors College, where she helped organize and manage initiatives of the college. She also served as an editorial assistant for the North Carolina Literary Review.

“Communication – among employers, lawmakers and regulators, the media and our advocacy allies – is at the heart of the Council’s mission,” Klein said. “Increased investment in communications will help us provide the highest level of service to our nearly 400 company/organization members, who facilitate the health and financial well-being of millions of workers in the United States and across the globe.”

New Email Delivery System

The dramatic growth of the Council’s membership rolls over the past decade – from 270 to nearly 400 member companies and 6,500 individuals within those member companies – has made it necessary for us to upgrade our email communications technology.

Starting soon, the Council’s Benefits Byte newsletter will be delivered by a third-party email provider, complete with a fresh and streamlined design. For a brief “redundancy” period, you should receive duplicate emails as we send communications from both the third-party provider and from our traditional system.

It is our hope that very few members experience an interruption in email delivery. However, during this “redundancy” period, if you do not receive the new version, please (1) check your firewall or “spam” filter, (2) contact your technical support staff or (3) ask us to assist you with ensuring your system will accept emails from our new “send-from” address.

For more information, contact Jason Hammersla, senior director, communications, at (202) 289-6700.

The American Benefits Council is the national trade association for companies concerned about federal legislation and regulations affecting all aspects of the employee benefits system. The Council's members represent the entire spectrum of the private employee benefits community and either sponsor directly or administer retirement and health plans covering more than 100 million Americans.

Notice: the information contained herein is general in nature. It is not, and should not be construed as, accounting, consulting, legal or tax advice or opinion provided by the American Benefits Council or any of its employees. As required by the IRS, we inform you that any information contained herein was not intended or written to be used or referred to, and cannot be used or referred to (i) for the purpose of avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) in promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein (and any attachment).