Delegates attending NYSTRS’ 2022 Annual Delegates Meeting re-elected Schenectady teacher Juliet C. Benaquisto to the NYSTRS Board of Trustees. Nearly 600 delegates from across the state participated in the Nov. 6-7 meeting, held at the Saratoga Springs City Center.
Benaquisto was first appointed to the Board in September 2021 by the state education commissioner to fill the term vacated by Sheila Sullivan Buck, who stepped down to become a labor relations specialist for New York State United Teachers (NYSUT).
Benaquisto, who was elected by delegates at last year’s meeting to complete the rest of Buck’s term, has now been re-elected to a new three-year term beginning Feb. 1, 2023. She currently serves on the Board’s Disability Review and Ethics committees.
After the vote, Benaquisto thanked the delegates for their support and said she was committed to working for all NYSTRS members to safeguard the pension fund. “It truly is a privilege to sit on this board, alongside my fellow Board members and to work with (Executive Director and Chief Investment Officer) Tom Lee and the really talented and dedicated NYSTRS staff members,” she added.
Benaquisto has been a special education teacher in the Schenectady City School District for 34 years. She is past president and a current member of the executive committee of the Schenectady Federation of Teachers after having served as president for 16 years. She was also a NYSTRS delegate prior to joining the Board.
In addition, Benaquisto has served NYSUT since May 2020 in several capacities, including serving as director of Election District 12 (ED-12) on the NYSUT Board of Directors. She received her bachelor’s degree in special education at SUNY Geneseo and her master’s degree in education psychology from SUNY Albany.
The other active teacher Board members are Elizabeth A. Chetney of the Baldwinsville Central School District and Eric J. Iberger of the Bayport-Blue Point Union Free School District. Board President David P. Keefe of Hempstead is the retired teacher representative.
At the Annual Delegates Meeting, delegates, who are elected by their peers and serve as liaisons between NYSTRS and teachers, also attended numerous informational sessions and participated in a question-and-answer session with Board members and NYSTRS staff. This year’s meeting was a hybrid event with most delegates attending in person while others opted to attend virtually.
Recorded presentations from the meeting will be posted soon on the Annual Delegates Meeting page at NYSTRS.org.
NYSTRS Board members serve without compensation and represent various constituents, including teachers, school administrators and school boards. They are responsible as fiduciaries to protect the long-term value of the System’s investment portfolio for its more than 440,000 active and retired members and beneficiaries.