Laura Haltzel is a senior fellow with The Century Foundation, where she focuses on ensuring retirement income security for all Americans. Haltzel has twenty-five years of experience producing politically sensitive, analytically rigorous, nonpartisan policy and research reports on retirement security issues for clients in the U.S. Congress, Social Security Administration (SSA), and Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Haltzel joins TCF after nearly five years as the research manager for the Income Security Section at the Congressional Research Service (CRS). In this capacity, Haltzel led a team in the development of Congressional reports in a portfolio that included Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, pensions, retirement security, household savings, Unemployment Compensation, Workers’ Compensation, and Veterans Disability Benefits.
Haltzel has deep expertise in Social Security policy. She has served as an advisor to both the Social Security Administration’s Retirement and Disability Research Consortium and the Social Security Advisory Board. Her leadership roles at SSA included work as deputy associate commissioner for the Office of Data Exchange and Policy Publications. Haltzel previously served as SSA’s deputy associate commissioner for the Office of Retirement Policy (ORP), ORP’s director of the Office of Policy Research, and as a social science research analyst. Due to her expertise in certain policy issues, as well as prior Congressional experience, Haltzel was frequently called upon to represent SSA in formal meetings with Congressional staff and members. In her ORP management roles, Haltzel developed a research agenda that focused on economically vulnerable groups, increased Congressional and OMB outreach and consumption of ORP research products, and developed new research products that were more accessible and policy relevant to internal and external SSA customers. As an Analyst, Haltzel co-chaired SSA’s Legislative Development Team responsible for developing and recommending policy proposals to the commissioner for submission to OMB.
Haltzel first joined CRS in 2002, and worked for six years as a specialist in Social Security’s Old Age and Survivors Insurance program. The highlights of her earlier years with CRS included testifying before the Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee in 2008, routinely briefing members of Congress on President George Bush’s 2005 Social Security reform proposal, and presenting a session, Pensions, Savings and Social Security, for the New Members Seminar in 2005.
Haltzel started her policy career in SSA’s Office of Retirement Policy as an analyst focused on use of the Microsimulation in the Near Term (MINT) model to estimate the distributional effects of policy proposals, annuity calculations, life events and the effect on individual accounts, Social Security’s budget, the Social Security Statement, the Superannuation program in Australia, and reasons individuals may withdraw from the labor force prior to the Social Security full retirement age.
Haltzel holds a master of public policy degree from Duke University (1998), and a BA in international relations and Hispanic studies from Connecticut College (1992).