December 13, 2019 Issue: Holiday 2019

Message from New EBC Management Co-Chair Aliya Robinson

By: Aliya Robinson, The ERISA Industry Committee, Washington, DC

I am excited and honored to begin a two-year term as Management Co-Chair of the Employee Benefits Committee. I am excited to work with Co-Chairs Joanne Roskey, Benjamin Eisner, and Cassie Springer Ayeni and with the various sub-committees to continue the great programming, treatise work, and growth of the Committee. I want to extend a special thanks to Russell Hirschhorn for his leadership as the previous Management Co-chair and allowing me to shadow him in preparation for this role.  I hope to match his dedication and enthusiasm for the role.

Since I first attended an EBC Committee meeting nearly 20 years ago, I have been continually engaged by the expertise, programming, and camaraderie in the Committee.  For those of us who have seen the Committee grow, we often reminisce about the days of sitting around one big table with opposing counsels “debating” various points in their ERISA cases.  But does this mean that the Committee has lost its appeal?  Actually, quite the opposite is true.  The growth of the Committee has matched the growth in ERISA issues generally and, therefore, has allowed for an expansion of topics, ideas, and “debate.”  The EBC Committee continues to be a spirited group that is passionate about the practice of employee benefits law.  At the same time, it is a group that is friendly and helpful, regardless of affiliation.  There may be other groups where opposing counsels will spend 45 minutes arguing – I mean, debating – with one another and then 2 hours chatting during dinner, but I am positive it does not happen as often as it does in our Committee.

I am privileged to work with such an esteemed group of attorneys and lucky to have so much fun doing it!  I encourage all members to get more involved in the Committee and am open to new ideas and suggestions to keep our Committee growing.  I look forward to serving the EBC Committee and the great group of attorneys in it.