Former ASPA Executive Director Chet Salkind Dies
Longtime ASPA Executive Director Chester Salkind passed away on May 19, 2018, while in hospice care in Durango, CO.
Salkind’s daughter Elizabeth noted in an email to several retired ASPA members that he had been in declining health over the last year, and suffered a stroke the week of May 14.
Salkind served as ASPA Executive Director from 1979 to 1997, and worked alongside 19 different ASPA Presidents. A graduate of Harvard and the Yale Law School, he spent more than two decades at the IRS, Department of Labor and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation in pension-related capacities before joining ASPA. He has been described as having an encyclopedic knowledge of employee benefit law and the complex workings of the regulatory process. According to Mike Callahan, ASPA’s 1996 President, “Chet had a deep knowledge of the regulatory side of our business, which was absolutely critical because the IRS, Department of Labor and PBGC were writing all of the core of the ERISA regulations during that time.”
Salkind received the Harry T. Eidson Founders Award upon his retirement in 1997. Ruth Frew, ASPA’s 1992 President, said at Salkind’s retirement celebration that the organization had a lot to be grateful for regarding Salkind’s key role as one of its early leaders. Brian Graff, who succeeded Salkind as ASPA Executive Director, said of Salkind, “He built the loyalty of members. He understood what members wanted. And because he was able to build that base of enthusiasm for ASPA, he provided the ingredients needed to really make the organization grow.”
Salkind’s family asks that memorial donations be made to the Gunnison Valley Animal Welfare League, a non-profit that shelters and helps find homes for animals in the Gunnison, CO area. Donations can be made online or by mail.