On March 23, 2022, the executive director of the Arkansas Public Employees Retirement System (APERS), Duncan Baird, announced that he would be stepping down from the agency’s top position for an opportunity in the private sector effective April 8.
Baird will become a senior manager of benefit services for Walmart, headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas, responsible for administering Walmart’s 401(k) plan, which covers 1.6 million U.S. associates, according to reports. Baird has served as APERS’s executive director since being hired by the board of trustees in 2019. Baird served as a state legislator from Lowell from 2009 to 2015, two of those years as co-chairman of the Joint Budget Committee, and later in Governor Asa Hutchinson’s budget office where he was promoted to state budget director.
“I’m very excited about the new opportunity, but I will miss being with APERS and working with our members and working with our staff,” Baird said.
APERS is the state’s second-largest retirement system, with assets valued at more than $11 billion and more than 80,000 working and retired members.