Announcing the Georgetown University 403 (b) Plan Investment Advisory Committee

Dear Colleagues,
As an employer that sponsors 403(b) retirement savings plans, Georgetown University is expected to provide fiduciary oversight to ensure that participants are charged reasonable fees, that the investment offerings are appropriate for a retirement savings program and have a level of performance consistent with industry standards. To guide these effort, we have established the Investment Advisory Committee.
It is my pleasure, as your Chief Benefits Officer, to serve on this Investment Advisory Committee, alongside esteemed members of our faculty and administration. I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce you to the committee members and to share some of our work and accomplishments to-date.

Committee Membership

George Comer, Associate Professor

Professor Comer has been on the faculty of the McDonough School of Business since 2001 and teaches Business Financial Management at the undergraduate level. He has been a member of the PhD Project Finance Doctoral Student Association since its inception and served as a faculty advisor for the organization. Previously, Professor Comer taught in the analyst training program for JP Morgan and currently serves as the finance instructor for the training program of First Manhattan Consulting Group.

David Rubenstein, Vice President and Treasurer

In his current role at Georgetown University, Mr. Rubenstein manages the Office of Financial Affairs and the Office of Faculty and Staff Benefits, while overseeing the financial operations of University Services, including Auxiliary Services and Medical Center financial operations. From 2004 to 2012 he served as Vice President of Financial Planning and Analysis, responsible for the development, monitoring and implementation of the University’s multi-year financial plan as well as debt management and issuance. Additionally, David has also served as Chief Financial Officer of the Medical Center.

Edward Soule, Associate Professor

Professor Soule’s teaching and research draws upon his business career (CPA & CFO) and his training in moral philosophy. He publishes in areas where morality intersects management, corporate strategy, and regulatory policy. And he teaches courses on managerial ethics and corporate social responsibility.

Charles DeSantis, Chief Benefits Officer

Charles DeSantis serves as associate vice president for benefits and payroll and chief benefits officer for Georgetown University.  DeSantis is responsible for leading the Office of Faculty and Staff Benefits that handles the University’s benefit programs including employee health insurance, pension plans and retirement savings plans. In his role, he determines policy, negotiates contracts and makes sure the university complies with relevant federal and local regulations. DeSantis also leads the University’s Payroll Services department, overseeing the streamlining of policies and process and enhancement of service capabilities and practices.

Good News!

One of the things we do as a committee is work to lower expenses. As a result, participants in TIAA-CREF and Fidelity will receive a Plan Servicing Credit in their accounts and Vanguard participants will have access to lower cost investment options. 

Georgetown University is delighted to be able to pass along these cost savings to Plan participants. The Investment Advisory Committee will continue to work to reduce Plan costs while also offering faculty and staff a high quality retirement program.

Credit for TIAA-CREF & Fidelity participants

Faculty and staff with Fidelity and TIAA-CREF accounts will see a Plan Servicing Credit appear via online accounts as well as on upcoming quarterly statements for the period ending June 30, 2014. This credit represents a return of fees that were above what the plan administrator and recordkeeper needed to cover plan expenses. The credit will be allocated based on your account balance in the plan and applied proportionally across the investment options in your account.

Lower expense ratios for two funds in your Vanguard retirement plan

The following funds in Georgetown University Defined and Voluntary Contribution Retirement Plans are now available at a lower cost:

  • Vanguard Windsor™ Fund
  • Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund

The underlying investment portfolio for each fund will remain the same; the only difference will be the share class. Different share classes have different expense ratios—the cost of running the fund, expressed as a percentage of the fund’s assets, as of the most recent fund prospectus.
You benefit from lower expenses
Expense ratios are important because, quite simply, cost matters. Reducing a fund’s expense ratio means you get to keep more of what you earn. While you may not notice much difference in the short term, the difference becomes more noticeable the more you save and the longer you keep the money invested, depending upon the returns of your investments.
No action required
Balances and contributions invested in any of the current share classes listed will move to the new share classes automatically.
Expense ratio comparison
The table found below compares the expense ratios of the current and new share classes as of December 31, 2013.

Expense Ratio Comparison


Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Investor 0.17% Institutional o.o4% $1.30
Vanguard Windsor Fund Investor 0.41% Admiral 0.31% $1.00