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News & Policy

PBGC Executive Director Bradley D. Belt Announces Departure

March 23, 2006

WASHINGTON-Bradley D. Belt, Executive Director of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, announced today he will be leaving the agency at the end of May.

"It has been a privilege and an honor to serve the public interest in your Administration, first as a member of the Social Security Advisory Board and for the past two years as the head of the PBGC," Belt said in his resignation letter to the President ( "This past two years has been a particularly tumultuous period for the PBGC, which has had to confront unprecedented operational, financial, and policy challenges. Due to the extraordinary efforts of its dedicated public servants, I am proud to say that PBGC rose to the occasion."

During Belt's tenure, the PBGC experienced a record level of pension plan terminations, a dramatic increase in risk exposure, and a near doubling of its customer base. As a result, the number of participants for which PBGC is responsible increased to 1.3 million and the assets managed by the Corporation increased to more than $56 billion. During this period, the Corporation was involved in numerous complex bankruptcies and corporate restructurings, including settlement of the $10.2 billion claim in the United Airlines case, the largest in the agency's history. Belt led a reorganization of the Corporation to better enable it to serve its customers and respond to marketplace developments. The Corporation also enhanced its risk monitoring and management capabilities, implemented robust financial management and internal control systems used as a model by the Office of Management and Budget for other government agencies, launched a series of online services for participants and practitioners, and implemented a new liability-driven investment policy. The PBGC also became the first government agency to be given full certification by OMB and the Office of Personnel Management for its executive performance system based on linkage of organizational performance to executive performance.

"Serving in your Administration has been the most rewarding experience of my professional career, but the time has come to pursue other opportunities," Belt said in his letter. "I also want to express my appreciation for the invaluable contributions of PBGC's Board of Directors-Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, Secretary of Treasury John Snow, and Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez-to fulfillment of PBGC's important mission."

Prior to being appointed as head of the PBGC, Belt had held executive positions in financial services and public affairs. He previously served in senior staff positions at the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, and at the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The PBGC is a federal corporation created under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. It currently guarantees payment of basic pension benefits earned by 44 million American workers and retirees participating in over 30,000 private-sector defined benefit pension plans. The agency receives no funds from general tax revenues. Operations are financed largely by insurance premiums paid by companies that sponsor pension plans and by investment returns.

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PBGC No. 06-32