Joel Sitrin has worked for the DoD Office of the Actuary (OACT) since 1991. He was named Deputy Chief Actuary in 1999 and Chief Actuary in 2002. He plans, directs, and oversees OACT’s work, including actuarial valuations and cost analyses related to DoD’s military retirement system, retiree health benefits system, Voluntary Separation Incentive program, Survivor Benefit Plan, and education benefits programs; and he supervises all senior OACT staff members.
Mr. Sitrin supports two independent boards of actuaries appointed by the Secretary of Defense—the DoD Board of Actuaries and the DoD Medicare-Eligible Retiree Health Care Board of Actuaries—and ensures OACT’s actuarial work is of sufficiently high quality to receive statutorily required Board approval. OACT develops budget figures for military benefit programs, in the form of actuarial contributions to the financing trust funds, as well as the related actuarial input to the Department and government-wide financial statements required under the Chief Financial Officers Act. Liabilities computed by Mr. Sitrin’s staff for military retirement and employment-related benefit programs exceed $2 trillion and represent over 90% of all reported liabilities for the Department, and during his tenure as Chief Actuary the Military Retirement Fund has been the only OMB-required DoD financial statement component to consistently receive clean audit opinions.
OACT under Mr. Sitrin’s leadership provides cost estimates and actuarial support to numerous DoD offices including the Comptroller, Health Affairs, Reserve Affairs, the Office of Compensation, and the Services. Mr. Sitrin also directs OACT’s support – in the form of cost analysis, data and actuarial expertise – to agencies outside DoD such as the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, VA, CBO, and OMB. Additionally, Mr. Sitrin oversees OACT’s cost and subsidy analysis, premium determinations, and development of financial analysis software for military members and retirement counselors, in support of the Department’s Survivor Benefit Plan.
From 1989 through 1991 Mr. Sitrin served as an actuarial technician with the Wyatt Company. At Wyatt he worked on actuarial valuations and cost studies of defined benefit pension plans for private sector clients, most prominently General Electric. He also helped price options for flexible benefits plans and participated in cost studies of post-retirement medical plan alternatives.
Mr. Sitrin joined Wyatt after receiving his B.A. in Mathematics and Physics from the University of Virginia. He is an Associate of the Society of Actuaries, a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries, and serves on the Academy’s Committee on Actuarial Public Service.