NU Online News Service, sept. 3, 12:40 p.m. EDT
Bruce Schobel says he still considers himself to be president-elect of the American Academy of Actuaries and is going to court to try to prove it.
Mr. Schobel filed a lawsuit seeking an injunction against his removal by board of directors of the association Aug. 5. He is demanding more than $2 million in penalties from the AAA, charging the group with removing him illegally and defaming him, according to papers filed with the U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia.
The AAA, based in Washington, announced Aug. 27 that its president-elect position was vacant. It gave no reason for the vacancy.
John Parks, current president of the AAA has asked the group’s nominating committee to fill the vacancy, the group said in its announcement.
Mr. Schobel was elected unanimously by the AAA board of directors in October 2008 to be the group’s next president effective Oct. 26, 2009, when Mr. Parks’ term ended.
In his court filing Tuesday, Mr. Schobel charged that the board’s decision to remove him violated Illinois law, where the group was incorporated, as well as the AAA’s own bylaws.
The court papers did not give specific details the reasons for the board’s decision to remove him. The papers did state, however, that an opponent had recently warned Mr. Schobel he would reveal “embarrassing information” about him to the board if he did not withdraw as president-elect. The nature of the information the adversary allegedly threatened to disclose was not disclosed.
The court papers identified the opponent as David Hartman. Hartman was president of AAA in 1993-1994.
In a statement yesterday, Schobel accused the AAA board of engaging “in egregious and unprecedented behavior that has interfered with and prevented me from continuing my good work as a leader of the actuarial profession and has harmed me personally.”
Mr. Schobel also said he was “eager to continue performing my duties as president-elect and a director of the academy and look forward to becoming president on October 26.”
Bruce Schobel was president of the Society of Actuaries, Schaumburg, Ill., in 2007-2008. He is a vice president and actuary at New York Life Insurance Company.
A spokesman for AAA said the group would not comment on the matter because it is in litigation.
An effort to reach Hartman for comment was unsuccessful.
Trevor Thomas is senior editor for National Underwriter Life & Health magazine.