Leader in U.S. Investor Education Tapped to Head States’ Investor Education Foundation
Washington, DC – June 2, 2004 – The board of trustees for the Investor Protection Trust (IPT) today announced the appointment of Don M. Blandin as president and CEO of IPT. Blandin, a nationally known expert on investor education, previously served as president of the American Savings Education Council (ASEC). He assumed his new position on June 1, 2004.
"Over the last 10 years, the United States has been transformed into a nation of investors" said Texas Securities Commissioner and IPT Trustee Denise Voigt Crawford. "Over half of all Americans are now invested in the securities markets, and that means financial knowledge is more important than ever if we are to help consumers understand the variety and complexity of their investment options. We are thrilled that someone of Don Blandin’s outstanding caliber will be joining the IPT as our chief executive. His demonstrated skill, commitment and passion in personal financial literacy and education, combined with his experience in building coalitions and strategic partnerships, will help the trustees make the IPT the best non–commercial investor education organization in the country."
"I am honored and excited to be part of this important organization," said Blandin, commenting on his appointment. "Raising the level of financial awareness and responsibility is a challenging task, but we have a terrific opportunity to make a difference through the IPT. We will be smarter about how we provide investor information so that it will motivate individuals to learn and utilize their new money management skills, and we will collaborate and coordinate our efforts with other organizations that share our mission of raising the level of financial literacy and investor protection."
The Investor Protection Trust is a nonprofit organization devoted to investor education. The primary mission of IPT is to provide independent, objective information needed by consumers to make informed investment decisions. Founded in 1993 as part of a multi–state settlement, IPT serves as an independent source of non–commercial investor education materials. IPT operates programs under its own auspices and uses grants to underwrite important initiatives carried out by other organizations.
In April 2003, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) announced the settlement of enforcement actions involving conflicts of interest between the research and investment banking operations of the nation’s 10 top investment firms. Seven of the firms agreed to pay a total of $80 million for investor education purposes. Of that amount, $27.5 million is to be paid to state securities regulators over a period of four years for investor education purposes. Those funds comprise the "Investor Education Fund" overseen by the IPT.
As an association executive with over 30 years of experience in a wide variety of non–profit and government sectors, Blandin brings significant involvement and knowledge in critical national and international issues including financial literacy and investor education. He was appointed president of the American Savings Education Council in 1996. Established in 1995, ASEC is a coalition of private– and public–sector organizations that undertakes initiatives to raise public awareness about what is needed to ensure long–term personal financial independence.
From 1981 to 1994, Blandin was at the Business–Higher Education Forum, including eight years as director from 1986 to 1994. The Forum, a group of corporate CEOs and university presidents, identified and acted on issues of national concern to the business and academic communities such as international competitiveness, technological innovation, and education and training.
Blandin also served as: special assistant to the assistant secretary of administration, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, from 1977 to 1981; executive director of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration, from 1972 to 1977; executive staff assistant in the Office of the Governor, California Council on Intergovernmental Relations, from 1970 to 1971; and just prior to joining ASEC, Blandin served nine months as executive vice president of the Council for Excellence in Government.
Blandin has been active on several national boards, including the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy as vice president of the board of directors and the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards as a member of the CFP Board of Governors and chairman of its national Consumer Advisory Council. Blandin was also appointed a delegate to both the 1998 and 2002 White House/Congressional National Summits on Retirement Savings, hosted by the President and Congressional leaders.
Blandin holds a BA in political science from California State University, Hayward, and a Master of Public Administration degree from The American University in Washington, DC. Blandin and his wife, Nanette, reside in Washington, DC with their son, Devon, and their daughter, Sara.