JoTo PR Client, Cowden Associates, Demonstrates Practical Approach in Shaping Pension Plans and Benefits Strategies in Crisis

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JoTo PR client, Cowden Associates, a 25-year veteran in the benefits field, prepares total compensation packages that reward and motivate executives to fund employee pension plans. The impending pension crisis nears as compensation funds are short by $3.58 trillion to fund employees’ retirement benefits.

Karla Jo Helms, CEO for JoTo PR, discusses the strategy for employers to fund pension and retirement plans.

“Skilled management, proactive planning and a collective mindset make it possible to free an underfunded pension plan from insolvency and to compensate those who’ve been on the front lines for their employers,” Helms added.

Recent findings by CNBC show most Americans close to retirement save only 12% of what they need.1 Those between ages of 55 and 64 with retirement savings only have a median of $120,000 socked away2 and 40% of middle-class Americans will fall into poverty or near poverty by the time they reach age 65 due to depressed earnings, asset values and increased healthcare costs.3 JoTo PR signed Cowden Associates, a nationally known expert in actuarial, compensation and employee benefits, addressing the precarious state of pension funding and retirement plans by advising long-term strategies for underfunding employers to meet their obligations.

Today, 66% of millennials (people currently aged 22-37) say they don’t have anything saved for retirement resulting from either the absence of retirement offerings or to retirement plan eligibility requirements that exclude part-time workers and recent hires.4 “Retirement and pension benefits of the last generation are becoming nonexistent for the majority of Americans,” Karla Jo Helms, CEO, for JoTo PR, said. “This is having a direct impact on millennials who can’t get a head start in saving because of the scarcity of retirement options offered by employers.”

Americans on the cusp of retirement are also noticing pension woes as underfunded multiemployer plans are gravitating towards failure within the next 20 years. 1.3 million union workers covered under multiemployer plans will receive a minimum from the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) even if the plans fail. The caveat is that the insurance program is expected to run out of money by 2025.5 Public and private employers have been assigned blame in failing to handle individual workers’ money, but corporate management holds the responsibility and the capability for stopping the pension crisis.

“Skilled management, proactive planning and a collective mindset make it possible to free an underfunded pension plan from insolvency and to compensate those who’ve been on the front lines for their employers,” Helms added.

Cowden Associates, Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, was created in 2001 by the merger of Halliwell and Associates and MMC&P Spectrum Benefits, which was founded by Jere Cowden in 1986. Currently led by President and CEO Elliot Dinkin, Cowden Associates specializes in helping corporate clients find the best solutions—both for the enterprise and its employees—with regard to compensation, healthcare benefits, retirement and pension issues, and Taft-Hartley fund consulting. Winning Workplaces and the Wall Street Journal have recognized Cowden Associates as a “Top Small Workplace,” a lifetime designation awarded to executives for their ability to build and lead savvy organizations.

JoTo PR has a history of innovative PR services that demonstrates their ability in gaining consistent news traction within the media for national and international organizations—helping provide front-line information to the media about industry disruptions and technological solutions aimed at making markets better for consumers. The firm is a trailblazer in the PR industry, blending traditional PR expertise with disruptive digital media to harness the advantages of the current media landscape. JoTo PR specializes in the healthcare, finance and technology sectors, but has worked for a variety of industries and non-profits, using a proprietary process to consistently identify, communicate and distribute to the press the newest news that’s most valuable to its readers, viewers and listenership.

About JoTo PR:
After doing marketing research on a cross-section majority of 5,000 CEOs of fast-growth trajectory companies and finding out exactly how they used PR, how they measure it and how they wanted the PR industry to be different, PR veteran and innovator Karla Jo Helms created JoTo PR and established its entire business model on those research findings. Astute in recognizing industry changes since its launch in 2009, JoTo PR’s team utilizes newly established patterns to create timely PR campaigns comprising both traditional and the latest proven media methods. This unique skill enables JoTo PR to continue to increase the market share and improve return on investment (ROI) for its clients, year after year—beating usual industry standards. Based in Tampa Bay, Florida, JoTo PR is an established international public relations agency. Today, all of JoTo PR’s processes are streamlined PR services that have become the hallmark of the JoTo PR name. For more information, visit JoTo PR online at http://www.jotopr.com.

About Karla Jo Helms:
Karla Jo Helms is the Chief Evangelist and Anti-PR Strategist for JoTo PR.

Karla Jo learned firsthand how unforgiving business can be when millions of dollars are on the line—and how the control of public opinion often determines whether one company is happily chosen or another is brutally rejected.

Being an alumna of crisis management, Karla Jo has worked with litigation attorneys, private investigators and the media to help restore companies of goodwill back into the good graces of public opinion—Karla Jo operates on the ethic of getting it right the first time, not relying on second chances, and doing what it takes to excel.

Karla Jo has patterned her agency on the perfect balance of crisis management, entrepreneurial insight and proven public relations experience. Helms speaks globally on public relations, how the PR industry itself has lost its way and how, in the right hands, corporations can harness the power of PR to drive markets and impact market perception.

1.    Martin, Emmie; “Most Americans Close to Retirement Have Saved Only 12% of What They Need,” CNBC, March 19, 2018.
2.    Martin, Emmie; “65% of Americans Save Little or Nothing−and Half Could end up Struggling in Retirement,” CNBC, March 15, 2018.
3.    Menard, Brown Martha Dr. “Almost Half of Middle-Class Americans Face Downward Mobility in Retirement,” BenefitsPRO, September 5, 2018.
4.    Lobosco, Katie, “66% of Millennials have nothing saved for retirement,” CNN, March 7, 2018.
5.    Miller, Stephen, “114 Multiemployer Pension Plans Projected to Fail Within 20 Years,” Society for Human Resource Management, August 29, 2017.

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Karla Jo Helms
JoTo PR
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