Edmund F. Murphy III
President, Empower Retirement
Edmund (Ed) Murphy provides leadership and strategic direction for Empower Retirement’s 4,000 associates. He directs all defined contribution, defined benefit, institutional and IRA markets. He also oversees all sales, marketing and global operations.
Ed brings 30 years of broad industry experience to his role. Before his 2014 appointment as President of Empower, he had served as Head of Defined Contribution and Investment Only for Putnam Investments since 2009. He joined the firm’s operating committee in 2011.
Prior to Putnam, Ed held executive leadership roles for nearly 20 years at Fidelity Investments in its institutional, private equity and retail businesses. He also served as President and CEO of Veritude, LLC, as well as a board member of BostonCoach, Advisor Technology Services, Seaport Hotel, World Trade Center and several other Fidelity-owned businesses. Earlier, he spent six years at Merrill Lynch.
Ed has written articles on retirement-related matters and has testified in Washington, D.C., before the House Committee on Ways and Means. He has also testified before the Department of Labor, the Treasury Department and the IRS. He speaks on topics ranging from investment advice to lifetime income solutions for retirees.
Ed is a board member of the Employee Benefit Research Institute, Cristo Rey School, Boston CollegeWall Street Council, Jobs for the Future and the New England Council. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Boston College. Ed is a graduate of the General Manager Program at Harvard Business School.
Executive Vice President, Operations
Rich Linton oversees all aspects of recordkeeping and plan administration operations for Empower Retirement, including the participant and plan call centers, compliance, conversion and implementation services, client services, and financial controls.
Rich joined the organization in 2016. Managing all aspects of the defined contribution business, he has more than 25 years of retirement industry experience.
Rich spent two decades at Fidelity Investments, where he gained deep experience running a major part of the operations organization. He served a variety of leadership roles in operations, sales, product, marketing and client services before becoming Executive Vice President in the advisor retirement business. From there, he went to Bank of America, where he served as Managing Director of the business retirement solutions group.
Before joining Empower, Rich served as President of large corporate markets and retail wealth management for Voya Financial. There, he oversaw sales and marketing, relationship management, product development, platform management, field representative service, brokerage operations and strategic planning.
Rich serves on the board of directors of both the American Benefits Council and the Expect Miracles Foundation. He is a graduate of Boston University, where he earned degrees in economics and mathematics.
W. Van Harlow, Ph.D., CFA
Senior Vice President, Empower Institute
Van Harlow, Ph.D., is Head of Strategic Solutions for Empower Retirement. In his role, Van creates products and services that address key investment goals. He also develops asset allocation tools and investment methodologies used by financial advisors, consultants and plan sponsors in the retirement and institutional markets.
Van, who joined the organization in 2009, is also the Director of Research for the Empower Institute; he is responsible for Empower’s investment thought leadership.
Van holds a master’s degree and a doctorate from the University of Texas, as well as holding a Bachelor of Arts from Rice University. He is also a Chartered Financial Analyst®.
Van is a recipient of a Graham and Dodd Award from the Financial Analysts Federation and a Smith Breeden Distinguished Paper Award from the Journal of Finance. He served as editor in chief of the Financial Analysts Journal from 1993 to 1998. He has also served on the Council of Educationand Research and the Research Foundation for the CFA Institute.
Van’s research publications have appeared in several distinguished journals, including the Journal of Financial Economics; the Journal of Finance; the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis; the Financial Analysts Journal; Financial Management; the Journal of Portfolio Management; the Journal of Investment Management; the Journal of Applied Corporate Finance; Advances in Futures and Options Research; and the Journal of Fixed Income.
William S. Harmon
Senior Vice President, Core Market
Bill Harmon manages Empower Retirement’s core market sales segment, which includes sales, client retention and financial results. The core segment has grown significantly in sales since 2003, when Bill took an executive leadership role in the company.
Bill joined the organization in 1988 as a Sales Representative in San Francisco. He was instrumental in the dramatic growth in market share of employee benefit products, particularly 401(k) plans. He later held management roles for both the San Jose, California, office and the Mid-Atlantic office (which covered Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.).
Bill holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in marketing from Loyola Marymount University. He maintains FINRA Series 6, 26 and 63 securities registrations.
Bill is involved in charities focused on the special needs community, including serving on the board of Adam’s Camp, an intensive therapy camp for children with special needs. He also commits his time to volunteering and fundraising for both the Special Olympics and the Rocky Mountain Down Syndrome Association.
Stephen E. Jenks
Senior Vice President, Marketing
Steve Jenks oversees the marketing effort for Empower Retirement and serves a similar marketing oversight role for Great-West Financial.
Previously, Steve served as Head of Defined Contribution Product and Marketing for Putnam Investments. He helped shape and execute growth strategies for its defined contribution, investment-only and rollover businesses. He joined the organization in 2011.
Steve began his investment industry career in 1990 with Fifth Third Bank. From there, he held leadership roles in marketing, product, finance, and relationship management for Fidelity Investments from 1992 to 2009. Steve also co-founded Acceleration Retirement, a marketing analytics and outsourcing firm, and Stable Two Financial, a registered investment advisory company. He served as CEO of both companies.
Steve serves on the board of directors of the American Red Cross Mile High Area. He holds a Bachelor of Science with distinction in business analysis from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business.
Senior Vice President, Client Solutions
Bill McDermott is Senior Vice President of Client Solutions for Empower Retirement. He oversees the relationship management, the participant communications and education, and the sales organizations.
A 30-year veteran of the benefits and retirement industry, Bill joined the organization in 2012. Before coming to Empower, he led the defined contribution business within Goldman Sachs’ investment management division. His previous experience includes leadership roles as Head of Defined Contribution and Outsourcing for large plans for Fidelity Investments; Head of Corporate Markets and a member of the executive committee for AXA Equitable; and Head of Business Development in the New York market and a partner for Hewitt Associates. In each of these roles, Bill worked with clients and consultants to help employees retire successfully.
Bill holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Villanova University. He is a frequent speaker at investment and retirement industry events. In addition, 401kWire has recognized Bill as one of the most influential people in the defined contribution industry.
Christine M. Moritz
Senior Vice President, Finance
Christine Moritz leads Empower Retirement’s financial teams, which provide financial and strategic support for the organization.
Christine, who joined the organization in 2003, has held various roles within the finance organization. Previously, she served as an auditor for PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Christine holds a master’s degree in professional accounting and a bachelor’s degree in business administration (accounting), both from the University of Texas at Austin. Christine, a Colorado-certified public accountant, serves as a Community Shares of Colorado board member.
Carol E. Waddell
Senior Vice President, Retirement Solutions
Carol Waddell leads the IRA and Empower Brokerage businesses. She also oversees the asset consolidation and tax-deferred protection programs across all defined contribution segments for Empower Retirement.
Previously, Carol served as Head of Product and Marketing for J.P. Morgan Retirement Plan Services, joining the firm in 2012. At J.P. Morgan, she led product management and development, which included products, services, tools and websites for advisors, plan sponsors and participants. Carol oversaw the firm’s marketing strategy and communications, the segment management and the award-winning participant experience.
Before her time at J.P. Morgan, Carol worked for T. Rowe Price for more than 17 years. During her tenure, she served in various leadership roles. She provided oversight for defined contribution, defined benefit and nonqualified plan product development and marketing, including customer digital channels, investment products, and services for intermediaries, plan sponsors and participants.
In addition, Carol contributed significantly to the firm’s overall retirement income and target date product strategies. Before T. Rowe, she worked for Citibank for nine years in a variety of positions focused on marketing and customer experience.
Carol holds a Master of Business Administration from Loyola University Maryland. She currently maintains FINRA Series 6, 7 and 24 securities registrations.
Vice President, Empower Institutional
Marybeth Daubenspeck oversees a team that manages relationships with institutional recordkeeping clients and that ensures Empower Institutional meets or exceeds its service commitments. Her relationship management team works closely with institutional partners to develop products, roll out new functionality and identify enhancement opportunities.
Marybeth, who joined the organization in 1986, has more than 26 years of experience working in the retirement services industry.
Marybeth holds degrees in business and marketing from Columbia College. She graduated from the University of Denver with a master’s degree in communications. She currently maintains FINRA Series 6 and 26 securities registrations.
Robert A. Holcomb
Vice President, Legislative and Regulatory Affairs
Bob Holcomb oversees retirement policy efforts on behalf of Empower Retirement.
In addition, Bob interprets pension-related legislation and regulations, consults with clients and internal partners on legislative and regulatory issues, and represents the organization in advocacy groups. He currently serves on the executive board of the American Benefits Council and works with other industry advocacy groups.
Bob, who joined the organization in 1991, has worked in the retirement business for more than 26 years, serving in client management, operations, technical consulting and sales support roles. He is a graduate of the University of Kansas School of Law.
Vice President, Human Resources
Valerie Schaad is Vice President of Human Resources for Empower Retirement. In her role, Valerie is responsible for the strategic management and oversight of human capital solutions.
Valerie, who joined the organization in 2015, has more than 25 years of experience working in human resources, primarily in the medical manufacturing, healthcare and financial services industries.
Valerie holds a Master of Science in management from the University of Colorado Denver.