Photo of Patti Epstein

The Department of Employee Trust Funds announces the appointment of Patti Epstein as Chief Benefits Officer (CBO).

Epstein leads ETF’s Division of Benefits Administration — the epicenter for managing retirement, disability, deferred compensation, and other benefits of the Wisconsin Retirement System — with a focus on ways to enhance participant experiences as they plan and reach retirement. She assumed the role on July 1, 2024.

“We are pleased to welcome Patti Epstein to ETF. She brings a wealth of leadership and operational experience that is crucial as we continue to modernize our benefits administration systems and serve customers with secure, self-service capabilities” said Shirley Eckes, Deputy Secretary of ETF.

As CBO, Epstein has administrative oversight of public sector employer-employee benefit policies, programs, and initiatives impacting approximately 678,000 members, and 1,586 state and local government units in Wisconsin. This includes managing division operations and processing of $7 billion in annual WRS pension payments. Epstein will also serve on ETF’s Strategic Council.

“With gratitude, I am honored to accept the role of Chief Benefits Officer at ETF. I look forward to collaborating with our dedicated team to deliver expert guidance, strong and sustainable benefits programs, and an exceptional customer experience,” said Epstein.

Prior to joining ETF, Epstein was Deputy Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, where she oversaw the agency’s four regulatory and licensing divisions or offices, the Division of Administrative Services and Technology, and the Office of Financial Capability.

Epstein’s private sector experience included being the Director of Administration for Total Administrative Services Corporation (TASC), the nation’s largest third-party benefits administrator. She also held leadership positions at JT Packard, Inacom Information Systems, and Wisconsin Physicians Service (WPS).

Epstein holds a B.S. in Business with a minor in Computer Science. She also serves the boards of corporate and non-profit organizations, including TEMPO-Madison, Milwaukee Women Inc., Wisconsin Women’s Council, and the UW Health Patient and Family Advisory Council.