Dr. Mary Bell Carlson, Ph.D., CFP®, AFC®
Hello and welcome! I am a busy mom just like you. My love of personal finance started when I was sixteen years old working as a teller at the local bank in a small town in West Texas where I grew up. I knew I loved working with people and teaching about money. That started my educational pursuits where I have earned both my master’s degree (Texas Tech University) and Ph.D. (Kansas State University) in personal financial planning with an emphasis in financial therapy.
I currently teach at the University of Georgia in the financial planning program. I have also earned my Certified Financial Planner® and Accredited Financial Counselor® designations. I have traveled all over the world speaking to a variety of audiences on personal finance topics and how to have a healthy relationship with money.
Since getting married and having my two beautiful daughters, I have decided to take a different approach to personal finance and now I help moms, just like you, make smart money decisions and have healthy financial relationships. Thank you for stopping by, and we hope you learn something while you are here.
To learn more about Mary and her background, visit her LinkedIn profile.
I graduated from the University of Georgia with an undergraduate in consumer economics, but during my last semester, I discovered an elective in financial counseling and client communication. This class not only intrigued me but also hooked me to the point that I went back to get my master’s degree in Financial Planning. I was so enamored with the concepts that were being taught, everything from taxes to retirement to estate planning, and I decided this was the career for me. As for some good fortune, I also happened to meet my now-husband in the financial planning program.
I took my first Financial Planning job in San Francisco where we worked for a few years before returning to Georgia, our home state, to start a new life. I currently volunteer with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program (VITA), Chief Financial Mom, and many other consumer-facing personal finance initiatives. My passion is to educate others to help them live their best lives full of passion and purpose with those they love most.
To learn more about Faith and her background, visit her LinkedIn profile.
Thomas Duffany, M.S., CFP®, AFC®
Growing up, the field of finance was not even on my list of possible career paths. I equated money to stress and anxiety and also viewed it as corporate and impersonal. After graduating high school I learned a lot about managing credit and personal finances in working for a credit card company and at the same time, heard and saw the struggles that many families experience related to their finances.
After some life experiences and beginning my own family I discovered I had a passion for helping individuals and especially families to overcome challenges and use their finances to provide the quality of life and achieve the goals they have. I went back to school and earned a bachelor’s degree (University of Missouri) and master’s degree (Texas Tech University) in Personal Financial Planning and earned both the Certified Financial Planner® and Accredited Financial Counselor® designations.
I have served in a variety of roles across the country teaching personal finance, developing financial plans, and helping families reduce the stress that comes from financial concerns and improve their financial health. My wife has been an inspiration to me as I’ve watched the positive impact she has had on our family finances as we’ve raised our two daughters.
Watching her and many other women I have worked with, I believe moms are in a unique position to have a tremendous impact and put their family on a secure financial foundation.
To learn more about Thomas and his background, visit his LinkedIn profile.