Welcome to the State of California
Governor Jerry Brown

Public Employee
Post-Employment Benefits Commission

Issues with this website?
e-mail webmaster@dof.ca.gov

Right Column


The Commission included twelve members: six, including the chairperson, appointed by the Governor, three appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly, and three appointed by the Senate President Pro Tem.


Gerald Parsky, 64, of Rancho Santa Fe, currently serves as chair of the Aurora Capital Group, a Los Angeles-based investment firm. From 1977 to 1992, he was senior partner and a member of the executive and management committees with the Los Angeles law firm of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher. Prior to going into private practice, Parsky served as assistant secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department in charge of international affairs and capital markets from 1974 to 1977. He has served on the University of California Board of Regents since first being appointed in 1996 and served as chair until 2006. Parsky is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.


Matthew Barger, 49, of San Francisco, is a senior advisor at the private equity investment firm Hellman & Friedman LLC, where he has worked in a number of roles including managing general partner and chairman of the investment committee since 1984. His primary focus has been asset management. From 1983 to 1984, Barger was an associate in the corporate finance department of Lehman Brothers Kuhn Loeb. Barger is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.

Paul Cappitelli, 49, of Rancho Cucamonga, has served the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department since 1978. He currently serves as commander of the West Valley Detention Center. Previously, Cappitelli served as captain of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Training Division from 2003 to 2006. Prior to that, he worked as the commander and chief of police for the Chino Hills Police and Sheriff’s Station from 2001 to 2003. Cappitelli is a member of the California Peace Officer’s Association and currently serves as president. Cappitelli is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.

John Cogan, 59, of Portola Valley, currently serves as senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and as a professor in the public policy program at Stanford University. In addition, he serves on the faculty advisory boards for the Stanford-in-Washington Program and the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research. During the Reagan Administration, Cogan served as deputy and associate director in the U.S. Office of Management and Budget and as assistant secretary for policy for the U.S. Department of Labor. Cogan currently serves as a member of Governor Schwarzenegger’s Council of Economic Advisers. Cogan is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.

Connie Conway, 56, of Tulare, currently serves as vice-chair of the Tulare County Board of Supervisors. Prior to her election, she was employed as the district manager of CorVel Corporation, a nationally certified health care organization specializing in workers compensation disability management. Conway is past-president of the California State Association of Counties, a member of the board of trustees for the Tulare Hospital Foundation and a founding member of the Leadership Tulare Core Committee and a member of the Tulare County Employees Retirement Association. Conway is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.

Ronald Cottingham, of Bonsall, was first elected president of the Peace Officers Research Association of California (PORAC) by unanimous vote on November 23, 2003 and has been re-elected by unanimous vote to 3 additional terms and is now in his fourth year as PORAC President. PORAC is a federation of Local, State and Federal Public Safety Associations. PORAC has over 750 Public Safety Associations as members representing an individual membership of 60,000. PORAC is the largest state-wide Public Safety Association in California and the nation. Cottingham’s background in association/labor representation and law enforcement is varied and diverse which gives him a unique perspective to be a member of the Pension Commission. Ron has been continuously employed by the San Diego Sheriff's Department since 1973 and currently holds the rank of Lieutenant. Cottingham is a Republican and is a legislative appointee to the Commission. 

Teresa Ghilarducci, Ph.D., is one of the nation’s preeminent experts on employee retirement pensions. Professor Ghilarducci currently serves as a trustee of the General Motors Retiree Health Fund and is a past Presidential appointee to the advisory board of the Pension Guaranty Corp. She is a Professor of Economics and Policy Studies at the University of Notre Dame and is the director of Notre Dame’s Higgins Labor Center. The author and editor of dozens of articles and books on pensions and retirement, Professor Ghilarducci has testified before Congressional committees numerous times on social security, retirement and pension issues. She earned her Bachelor of Arts and PhD from the University of California, Berkeley. Professor Ghilarducci is a Democrat and is a legislative appointee to the Commission. 

Jim Hard is president of California’s largest union of public employees, Service Employees International Union Local 1000. Hard’s union represents the employee interests of nearly 90,000 workers. He has worked with both Republican and Democratic administrations on labor-management issues, including pension and health benefits, disability insurance and reforming the discrimination complaint process in state service. Prior to being elected president of SEIU Local 1000, Hard had worked for the California Employee Development Department for 20 years. He is a graduate of California State University, Humboldt where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Political Science. Hard is a Democrat and is a legislative appointee to the Commission. 

Leonard Lee Lipps is a teacher who has worked in elementary, middle and high school classrooms in California. He currently serves the California Teacher’s Association as a regional manager where he works with school districts on budget analysis, State Teacher’s Retirement System issues and the economic impact of state legislation on education finance. Lipps has worked as the lead trainer for countless seminars on school finance and teacher retirement to fellow educators around California. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in History and a lifetime teaching credential from St. Mary’s College in Moraga, California and graduated from Harvard University’s Trade Union Program. Lipps is a Democrat and is a legislative appointee to the Commission. 

Dave Low, of Sacramento, is the assistant director of Governmental Relations for the California School Employees Association and is responsible for lobbying and legislative advocacy, political action, policy development, legislative analysis, political campaigns, and political and legislative training and education. He works with federal, state and local elected and appointed officials on education and labor issues, manage governmental relations staff and office. Low is a member of the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California. Low is a Democrat and is a legislative appointee to the Commission. 

Curt Pringle, 47, of Anaheim, currently serves as Mayor of the City of Anaheim and president of Curt Pringle & Associates. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member in the political science department at the University of California, Irvine since 2000, where he teaches California government. Previously, he served in the California State Assembly from 1988 to 1990 and 1992 to 1998. While in the Assembly, Pringle served as Speaker in 1996. Pringle is a Republican and was appointed to the Commission by the Governor.

Robert Walton, of Willows, retired in 2005 after 34 years in state government including over 30 years with CalPERS. While at CalPERS, he served in many capacities including the last 17 years as assistant executive officer. Walton had extensive experience in fiscal, budget, actuarial and health benefit management. During his time at CalPERS, the fund’s total assets grew from just over $4 billion to well in excess of $200 billion. Walton was a member of the Governmental Finance Officers Association and National Conference of Public Employee Retirement Systems. Walton is an Independent and is a legislative appointee to the Commission.