CDM Hosts Luncheon with Keynotes from American Century and Smith & Downey

Key note speaker

On Tuesday March 5th, CDM hosted a luncheon with key note speakers Barry Downey from the ERISA law firm, Smith & Downey and Glen Godin from American Century.  Both men gave outstanding presentations on protecting plan fiduciaries and the risks associate with QDIA selection respectively.

Glenn Godin, VP DCIO discussed the fact that many advisors and plan sponsor choose their target date funds based on fees and performance, but leave out an important component, that being the risk those funds take in achieving those performance numbers.  His assertion is that with the majority of dollars ending up in target date fund, a 2008-like downturn would have devastating effects on the 50+ investor.  American Century offers a forward-looking analysis tool to help select the target date solution best-suited to each plan.

Barry Downey from Smith & Downey provided the audience of advisors a number of tips to keep plan sponsor out of harm’s way including:

  • the need to follow the proper definition of compensation – a common issue among retirement plans.
  • the failure to satisfy 401(a)(9) for minimum required distributions – an expensive mistake if not timely administered.
  • an understanding of the difference between a 3(21) advisor and a 3(38) investment manager – the trend is towards the latter.


Mr. Downey concluded with a case study correcting a massive DOL overstep, which proves to show that with proper documentation and thoughtful procedures, a DOL audit need not be a source of great concern.  Of course, it’s helpful to have outstanding representation!

Lunch was served and CE credits distributed.  CDM plans to host future events on a semi-monthly featuring local experts in the retirement plan industry. For more information contact Tom Rouse at 443-797-1040 or