Women and money.
Let’s dive into that for a moment, shall we? Not only do we women earn less than men over our lifetimes — about 80 cents on the dollar, to be exact — we also live five years longer, which leads us to the classic equation of having to do more with less. In other words, women start out financially behind the 8-ball, which makes it incredibly important for us to be active participants in our financial lives… And who better to show us the way than some incredible money-savvy women?
Here’s a rundown of some of our favorite women who lead financial literacy projects — we hope you find them as inspiring and as empowering as we do!
1. Tiffany Aliche
This financial literacy advocate penned the No. 1 Amazon bestseller “The One Week Budget” and is the driving force behind Budgetnista. For the first decade of her adult life, Tiffany Aliche worked as a preschool teacher, where she observed firsthand the value of education and felt the stress and heartache of living with too little money.
Her “Live Richer Challenge” encourages women across the world to learn and take better control of their finances, with more than 800,000 enrolled in the 2020 cohort. In 2019, she partnered with Assemblywoman Angela V. McKnight to get the Budgetnista Law passed in New Jersey, mandating that financial education must be integrated into all New Jersey middle school curriculums. Aliche is a powerhouse of financial literacy learning.
Our favorite insight from Aliche is her observation that “At its core, teaching is unlocking access.” This is true in every aspect of education, but it might be most true of teaching financial literacy. Knowing more about empowering yourself financially unlocks doors to opportunities you would not have without those economic resources.
2. Eva Baker
Eva Baker’s financial literacy efforts started when she tackled a senior project as she finished her education. She had listened to Dave Ramsey’s classic “Total Money Makeover” and wanted to create a business that teaches teens about money.
That project turned into Teens Got Cents, which encourages teens to “live a centsible life” and know enough about making good financial decisions to avoid the debt that people tend to accumulate in their 20s, and then suffer from throughout their 30s and 40s. Baker speaks internationally to teens, youth, and adults about financial literacy and money management, and she has expanded her outreach to include small and micro business planning through TheTeenPreneur.
Our favorite insight of Baker’s is the importance of starting early with good financial decisions. And since she’s captured her audience a decade or so earlier than most, she’s doing an incredible job of changing lives.
3. Rita R. Robison
Rita R. Robison spent 30 years as a journalist, and eventually started a blog reporting on consumer issues including benefits fraud, common online scams, and how to win a fight with an airline. Her blog The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide started out aimed at (you guessed it) Baby Boomers, but has since expanded to serve people of all ages.
Robison speaks frequently about the best actions consumers can take to protect themselves, and her memoir of life as a journalist and consumer advocate is due out in 2021. Our favorite insight from Robison is that she views being an informed consumer as a kind of war. She says we have to be more informed and active than the “other side,” the corporations and scammers who are always looking to get more of our money.
4. Tia Chambers
As the founder and driving force behind FinanciallyFitandFab, Tia Chambers is a certified financial education instructor who focuses on helping young adults get their finances into shape. She combines the data-driven approach of strong financial analysis with the wit and sass of your favorite personal trainer — she tells it how it is.
One topic Chambers is unflinchingly honest about is the subject of the racial wealth gap in North America. She gives advice on how to navigate the landscape as it exists, while simultaneously working to improve it for later generations.
Our favorite insight from Chambers is that investing is important even for people with bruised finances that are still under repair. She wants to “end many of the misconceptions associated with investing that keep many from building wealth.” She teaches working families how they can struggle less.
5. Chelsea Fagan
Chelsea Fagan blogs about lifestyle and financial advice on her site TheFinancialDiet, and she shares those same thoughts on her popular YouTube channel by the same name. Her own experiences with money management as a young adult inspired her to move into this much-needed niche.
A “financial diet” is exactly what it sounds like: A way to cut back on unnecessary indulgences now so you can enjoy better financial health later on. Fagan advises readers on how to prioritize, minimize, and improvise to make each dollar go further, so they can enjoy spending their money on what matters.
Our favorite insight from Fagan is the parallels she draws between living on a budget and going on a weight-loss diet — both so important for your long-term health and wellness!
Thousands of women give their time and expertise to teaching financial literacy every day. If you have favorites you’d like us to spotlight, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll give them some love!
by Tamara Anders, a New York-based financial writer
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