March 13

Watch Now

Retiree health care is one of the fastest-growing personnel costs in government budgets. That's because retirees are living longer, and medical costs are rising faster than the rate of inflation. Five years ago, 83 percent of state and local governments provided retirees health care coverage; today it’s just 68 percent. How do you know if your retiree health care program is future-proof and if it’s not, what options are available to fortify your program?

Join us on March 13 at 11:00 PT/2:00 ET as we explore these questions and more. You’ll learn:

  • How to determine if your retiree health care program is built to last
  • A simple stress test you can take
  • Alternatives to considered if the status quo isn’t an option 
  • Actions you can take now to ensure sustainability


Marianne Steger, MS, CEBS

Marianne Steger, MS, CEBS

Director of Public Sector Strategy, Willis Towers Watson

Marianne Steger has more than 35 years of experience in health plan strategy and design, employee benefits, labor relations and public policy. Currently the Director of Public Sector Strategy for Willis Towers Watson working with public employers and unions to preserve retiree health care, she is the retired Director of Health Care for the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System. At OPERS she ran the retiree health care program for nearly a quarter of a million lives including executing the largest transition (142,000 lives) in the country of Medicare retirees from a group plan to individual plans on a Medicare exchange. Prior to commencing her career at OPERS in 2011, she spent 30 years partnering with public employers on health care issues in her career with the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.

Katherine Barrett

Katherine Barrett

Senior Fellow, Governing

Katherine Barrett is a senior fellow at the Governing Institute and a long-time columnist for Governing magazine (with specialties in management and workforce).
Over the course of over 25 years, Katherine Barrett and her husband, Richard Greene, have served as principals of Barrett and Greene, Inc. and have done much-praised analysis, research and writing about state and local governments.
She is currently engaged as: Special Project Consultant at the Volcker Alliance; senior advisor at the Government Finance Research Center at the University of Illinois in Chicago; and a fellow in the National Academy of Public Administration. She has served in an advisory or contractual capacity to many organizations including the National League of Cities, the Urban Institute, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board; the Association of Government Accountants, the National Association of State Chief Administrators Offices, the IBM Center for the Business of Government, the Council of State Governments, the Fels Institute at the University of Pennsylvania and the Pew Charitable Trusts.

Mark Funkhouser

Mark Funkhouser — Moderator

Publisher, Governing

Mark Funkhouser is the publisher of Governing magazine. He served as mayor of Kansas City, Mo., from 2007 to 2011. Prior to being elected mayor, Funkhouser was the city's auditor for 18 years and was honored in 2003 as a Governing Public Official of the Year. Before becoming publisher of Governing, he served as director of the Governing Institute

Funkhouser is an internationally recognized auditing expert, author and teacher in public administration and its fiscal disciplines. He holds an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in public administration and sociology from the University of Missouri at Kansas City, an M.B.A. in accounting and finance from Tennessee State University and a master's degree in social work from West Virginia University.