President’s Message – August, 2015

Greetings to all,

For this month’s newsletter, I wanted to take the opportunity to revisit a key theme for FPA of MN leadership for 2015: Making sure we are empowering FPA members to serve people of all income levels. As noted in the past, as a key component of the FPA of Minnesota 5-year vision, this initiative stresses the fact that it is important that collectively among our committees, we are empowering our members to serve the high net worth, people with low income, those in their “golden years”, Gen X and Gen Y, and everything in between.

This doesn’t mean that each committee should try to be things to all people but rather that we should be intentional among committees in terms of determining which “segment” we best serve, focus on how well we are doing that and how we can continue to deepen that, and then assess to make sure that each “segment” is being covered and covered effectively to best empower you as our members to serve your target markets for your paid “gig” as well those populations you are passionate about serving on a Pro Bono basis.

This concept has been embraced by each of the committees serving FPA of Minnesota in numerous ways throughout 2015. For the August newsletter, I wanted to specifically highlight some of the ways we have focused and will continue to focus on this initiative as it relates to serving low income clients on a Pro Bono basis as well as continuing to provide financial education to the public:

  • The Pro Bono committee has presented a series of workshops empowering FPA members to assist Pro Bono clients, providing a foundational “boot camp” for working with low income individuals, a session on serving members of the military and their families, and a session on Special Needs planning. The next workshop is schedule for Tuesday, September 15th, immediately following the chapter meeting on the topic of debt management/credit repair.
  • The Financial Education committee continues to collaborate with Best Prep on a number of programs, including eMentors, in which FPA volunteers are paired with high school students to discuss topics related to personal finance. For more information regarding this program, please visit the Best Prep website.
  • Through one of our long-time non-profit partners, Prepare + Prosper, FPA volunteers continue to serve as financial coaches and provide tax preparation assistance to low-and-moderate income families. For more information on getting involved, please visit the Prepare + Prosper website.
  • As a collaborative effort between the Financial Education and Pro Bono committees, FPA volunteers provided a workshop on cash flow/budgeting and offered one-on-one financial coaching to 75 Americorp volunteers serving through College Possible.
  • Members of the Financial Education committee participated at the 2015 STEM Expo for approximately 2,500 6th grade students in the Minneapolis Public School system. FPA participated in Best Prep’s “Financial Alley” program, designed to increase awareness of various financial literacy topics as well as to learn more about career options in financial services.
  • Our Pro Bono volunteers continue to assist low-income clients on a one-on-one basis who request assistance through our website.
  • The 6th annual Twin Cities Financial Planning Day will take place on Saturday, October 17th at the Wilder Center in St. Paul. The event is free and open to the public and features a series of workshops and one-on-one financial planning sessions. Last year, we attracted over 200 participants!For more information, please visit the Financial Planning Day website.

A huge thanks to all of our tremendous Financial Education and Pro Bono committee members and volunteers for all of your efforts. If you would like to find out more about getting involved, please visit our website to explore volunteer opportunities and express your interest in participating.

As always, feel free to let me or any of our Board members know of any questions, comments, or concerns that you have. We strive to “ask-listen-respond.”

Steve Gilbertson, CFP®

Steve Gilbertson, CFP®
Accredited Investors, Inc.