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Labor Member Bragg announces the retirement of Assistant Geri Clark

(BLET Editor’s Note: The following is a message to all Rail Labor from John Bragg, Labor Member of the Railroad Retirement Board.)

CHICAGO, June 18 — It is with mixed emotions that I must announce the retirement of long-time Assistant to the Labor Member, Geraldine “Geri” Clark. On July 2, 2021, the effective date of her retirement, Geri will have dedicated 51 years of her life to serving railroad workers and their families. Geri’s leaving will mark the end of an era for the Railroad Retirement Board and I am indebted to her dedication and commitment to the men and women of the rail industry who keep this country moving. Her work over the last 51 years has helped assure that railroad workers always receive the benefits they need and deserve.

A Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) employee since 1970, Geri was appointed to her current position in 1985 by former Labor Member of the Board C. J. Chamberlain. She was the first woman to be named a Board Assistant in the agency’s history. Geri also served as an assistant to Labor Members, V.M. “Butch” Speakman, Jr., and W.A. “Walt” Barrows.

Prior to her appointment, Ms. Clark was a claims specialist with the RRB’s former Advanced Systems Team, which was charged with automating claims processing procedures. She previously served as a claims specialist in the Planning, Analysis and Training Unit of the agency’s then Bureau of Retirement Claims, and as a retirement claims examiner.

During her tenure in the Office of the Labor Member, Ms. Clark was the driving force behind the Informational Conference program. The conferences were introduced by the Labor Member to help educate local rail labor representatives about the benefits available to members and their families under the Railroad Retirement and Railroad Unemployment Insurance Acts. Thousands of representatives attended conferences over the years and achieved a better understanding of the provisions and financing of the railroad retirement and unemployment insurance systems, and of the administrative organization of the RRB. In turn, they helped improve the effectiveness of the agency’s benefit program operations by passing on to their fellow railroad employees the information they acquired at the conferences.

More recently, Ms. Clark spearheaded the launch of the office’s Pre-Retirement Seminar program. The seminars have proven to be a popular successor to the informational conferences, offering similar content, but open to rail labor representatives and also railroad employees and their spouses nearing retirement.

Geri’s retirement is a great loss to my office and the RRB. Her 51 years of dedication to the RRB, rail labor, and to both active and retired rail workers is unmatched. Her self-motivation, commitment to improving customer service and willingness to always go the extra mile when called upon will be greatly missed. I wish Geri the best as she begins this new chapter in life, but most importantly I want to thank her for her service. She has truly been a pleasure to work with.

Friday, June 18, 2021

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