(LEXINGTON, Ky.) – Financial analyst Aaron Ammerman has become the new chairman of the Bluegrass Institute Board of Directors following outgoing chair Tim Yessin’s announcement that he will transition off the board to focus on his growing financial-services business.
Ammerman, a Bluegrass Institute board member since 2014, has had a long career as an investment consultant advising public pension funds and individuals. He is a member of the Bluegrass Institute Pension Reform Team and also serves on additional local boards with a focus on education. He has an undergraduate degree from Asbury University and a master’s in economics from the University of East London – England.
Yessin joined the board will in 2008 and was elected chairman in 2013.
He also serves as vice president and a wealth management advisor with WealthSouth Concierge Financial Services Industry, a division of Farmers National Bank of Danville with offices also in Lexington and Bowling Green.
Bluegrass Institute president and CEO Jim Waters praised Yessin for helping guide the organization through the economic downturn that negatively affected many nonprofits.
“Tim’s been unwavering in backing our efforts to confront the biggest threats to Kentucky’s economic well-being,” Waters said. “He is a true patriot who understands and supports the Bluegrass Institute’s role of advancing free-market solutions to the critical issues facing our commonwealth rather that offering Band-Aids that leave future generations holding the bag and carrying the load for failed, costly policies.”
The Bluegrass Institute’s impact on advancing freedom for Kentucky workers has grown exponentially under Yessin’s chairmanship, including leading America’s first local right-to-work movement that ultimately resulted in the commonwealth becoming the 27th right-to-work state last January.
“Important policy changes that have occurred in Kentucky in recent years with not only right-to-work, but the repeal of prevailing wages on public projects, paycheck protection for workers, school choice and making legislators’ pensions transparent are a testimony to the hard, focused and effective work of this valuable organization,” Yessin said. “Considering what the institute has been able to accomplish in its first 15 years, I expect it will have an even greater impact in its next 15 years and beyond. I want to recommend that all Kentuckians who care about sound policy based on principles of liberty and prosperity show their moral and financial support for this organization.”
During Yessin’s tenure, the organization also has demonstrated great impact in bringing more transparency and accountability to government bodies at all levels, including creation of the Bluegrass Institute Center for Open Government with its citizen-centered focus on making government at all levels more accountable and accessible to its constituent-taxpayers.
Yessin’s leadership has also provided valuable support in forming the pension reform team and developing a strategy that has resulted in developing a new paradigm that will provide a defined benefit for Kentucky workers in the future while also protecting taxpayers and paying down the retirement systems’ current $60 billion unfunded liability, a factor in the downgrade of the commonwealth’s credit rating.
“During his service on our board and tenure as chairman, the Bluegrass Institute has demonstrated growing impact in moving our state from political gridlock, corruption and government dependency toward a free, independent and prosperous Kentucky,” Waters said. “We very much appreciate Tim’s service and look forward to continuing to work with him to advance our mission of making Kentucky the fastest-growing, most-innovative state in America.”
Waters said the fact that Ammerman has served on the pension reform team since it was formed two years ago makes him the ideal candidate to become the institute’s next chairman.
“Aaron understands the danger that Kentucky’s huge pension liability poses to the institute’s vision of growth, prosperity and opportunity for future generations of Kentuckians,” Waters said. “He’s fully engaged in this issue and brings to the chairmanship a real sense of urgency to addressing the greatest threat to the commonwealth’s economic security during our lifetime.”
For more information, contact Bluegrass Institute president and CEO Jim Waters @ 270.320.4376.