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CalPERS confirms Feckner as president

US – The $182bn (€139.4bn) California Public Employees’ Retirement System, under attack from state governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, has elected Rob Feckner as president.

Feckner, a glazing specialist who chairs the fund’s investment committee, replaces Sean Harrigan, who was ousted in December. It was reported at the time that CalPERS’ high-profile involvement in corporate governance had been an issue.

“I intend to ensure that we continue to maintain decent retirement benefits and adequate, affordable health care benefits for California’s hard working public servants and their employees,” the new president said in a statement.

The role of president includes overseeing the board’s conduct of business, meeting schedules and agendas, as well as appointing the board policy committees.

The fund, which is the largest in the US, also appointed Robert Carlson, who has been on the CalPERS board since 1971, as vice president.

Feckner has already been critical of Schwarzenegger’s plans to make CalPERS into a defined contribution scheme.

“The abundance of evidence suggests this legislative proposal to move to a defined contribution plan is not well thought out," Feckner said.

Earlier this week CalPERS posted a 13.5% return on investments last year, with corporate governance investments gaining about 28%.

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