The mission of Mark’s Money Mind

To help you develop and expand your Money Mind, become financially secure and independent, and to be in control of your own financial destiny.

Why am I doing this?

After reaching financial independence and ultimately retiring at the end of 2015 (just after my 50th birthday), I started volunteering my time at our local high school and library teaching personal finance and financial literacy classes to high school seniors and adults in our community. I have also been teaching these topics to my teen-age daughter during her lifetime. I have always planned to give my daughter a condensed summary of these lessons on her 18th birthday (December 2017) so she’d have something to refer to if I was unavailable to do so.

After interacting with many students and adults while volunteering, I now realize how limited the knowledge is on these topics among the general public. So instead of just passing this information along solely to my daughter, I have been encouraged to share my knowledge and experience with a wider audience, beyond just my small community in Crested Butte, Colorado – hence the MarksMoneyMind.com blog.

Who am I?

I graduated from Delbarton High School in Morristown, NJ in 1983 and from Lafayette College in Easton, PA in 1987 with a degree in business and economics. Being from the East Coast, I went to work in the financial industry on Wall Street immediately after graduation only to experience the crash of 1987 first hand shortly thereafter. (This was my first significant experience with stock market volatility.) I was employed in the financial industry my entire career, the last 24 years of which as a mutual fund portfolio manager.

Having always been ravenous for any information related to personal finance, after my retirement at the end of 2015 (given I had plenty of new-found free time) I decided to expand my Money Mind further by enrolling in a college-level course that satisfies the education requirement for individuals intending to sit for the Certified Financial Planner™ exam. I really enjoyed learning the material and upon completion I decided I might as well sit for the exam. After passing on my first try, and given my work experience in the industry, the Certified Financial Planning Board of Standards conferred the designation of Certified Financial Planner™ to me in August 2016.

How did I get here?

I was not always financially savvy, in fact that is far from the case. While I have a degree in business and economics, I did not learn much about personal finance in high school or college. I ultimately had to learn the hard way – through experiences, both good and bad. In fact, I started off on the wrong foot – spending (way) more than I earned and accumulating debt. I will discuss many of the things I learned along the way as I (slowly) developed my Money Mind so that you may learn from my experiences.

All was not lost, however, I soon learned about the importance of living within my means, saving and investing (and the power of compounding) and ultimately the road to financial independence. I must say, this was not a lone process. My wife has been with me on this journey since we married in 1990. This has very much been a dual effort, which is also something that will be discussed on this blog.

What I hope you will get from this blog

My aim is to provide information, insights and knowledge to help you develop and expand your Money Mind. This blog is intended for people who have the desire to be in control of their own financial destiny – that in essence have a desire to become the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of “You, Incorporated”.

The ultimate goal is to empower you by expanding your financial knowledge to take control of your own financial destiny.

Please join me as we collectively expand our Money Minds!