Nathan Magsig: Chairman of the Fresno County Retirement Association

This week, we are happy to have Nathan Magsig, the 2 term Mayor of Clovis is my guest!  Nathan currently serves as chairman of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors, so he knows how to manage a Pension System and a City.  He is more than just your “average” manager. A man of multiple talents and varied interests, Nathan has devoted his life in service of others. On this podcast, you will learn how he chairs the Fresno Retirement System; of course, we talk all about pension funds and the innovative ways to ensure our portfolio remains profitable. However, you will also get to know a very interesting person who cares about people.  When he is not at the office working to make Fresno a better place, you can find Nathan cycling, camping, reading, and spending time with his family.



Show Notes

1:50 – What is life like for Nathan these days

  • California started opening up some sectors
  • Hospitals are severely impacted by the pandemic
  • The priority is to spread the information about the importance of wearing mask, social distancing, etc

05:33 – The power of wearing a mask

  • Wearing a mask has been shown to remove the spread of virus
  • The doctors are asking us to do it and is a state mandate
  • The virus does not discriminate – we need to all abide by the rule of wearing a mask

08:25 – Nathan’s role as the chairman of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors

  • Being a chairman is a ceremonial title but every year, the board of supervisors rotate that position.
  • He runs the meetings and agendas for the county
  • He spent months putting a montage that highlights how wonderful the employees of Fresno County are and was very well received online

11:00 – Nathan’s role as the chairman of the Fresno County Employees Retirement Association

  • As a supervisor, his colleagues appointed him to serve on Fresno County Employees Retirement Association which is their pension system
  • He is a fiduciary as a trustee of their pension system
  • He doesn’t vote on what’s in the best interest of the county per se

13:02 – The disruptions in the Fresno retirement fund caused by the pandemic

  • At one point, their valuation went -20% in their portfolio that were expected to have a return of 6-8%.
  • While there’s volatility, their pension fund is in a position where their funded status is around 82% – not the best, but not the worst.
  • Despite the volatility, there’s always an opportunity – you must find it.

18:30 – The status of real estate in Fresno

  • Residential real estate is booming right now in Fresno
  • A lot of businesses that are in dense environments are now moving into suburbia.
  • In commercial real estate, Nathan is overly concerned about brick and mortar locations. Different establishments already went bankrupt due to lock down.

23:20 – Calls for police reform in Fresno considering the current events

  • There have been discussions on how law enforcers can engage the public in better ways
  • There is always an opportunity to do better as law enforcers

24:40 – Fresno’s plan to continually employ teachers and make schooling work

  • Their public health department is working with private school districts to make sure that safety measures are in place once school restarts
  • Internet services is okay for 80% of the population but some communities are having trouble with internet.

28:27 – Nathan’s heart with public service and how he imparts it with his children

  • He sets an example by what they see him doing
  • Nathan makes sure that he spends quality time with his kids
  • Family is still priority

30:45 – Nathan’s advice for other pension funds

  • Nathan challenges pension funds to look inward and ask how to use a portion of the fund to build infrastructure, or solve other problems while making returns in the community
Listen to all other episodes of Pension Trends Plus with Atara Twersky on AF&T’s websitePodbean, or wherever you listen to podcasts!