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Ruminations from the Executive Director

March 09, 2009

First a little about me. Many of you know that I have a military background. It was there, helping young Airmen work through a myriad of challenges, that I became interested in personal finance. I retired from the Air Force just passed the twenty-year point. Subsequently, did financial counseling for Marines for several years and just prior to assuming this position was contracted into Headquarters Marine Corps guiding the personal finance program for the Marine Corps. That is where my interest turned into a passion as I became more familiar with the types and nature of financial challenges people encountered – especially the abundance of not so reputable entities that took money for services never rendered and left people worse off than when they started. I became a member of AFCPE in 2001, and am delighted to be able to help guide the association’s development.


So what do I see for AFCPE? Growth! The Association was growing, but now stands in a position for extraordinary growth. We are unique; we are not an organization of just credit counselors or an organization of only financial counselors and advisors, but an association of researchers, educators, and practitioners. We are diverse is many ways: occupations, talents, gender, race, and, ethnicity just to mention a few. I think it would be very difficult to pigeonhole and describe the “typical” AFCPE member or certificant. We all have one defining quality though; the passion for personal finance and desire to help people better understand their personal financial situations. We must capitalize on our common quality and bring our diversity (and the unique ideas that diversity engenders) to bear as we grow our association.


Several people have asked, what’s my vision for the organization. I’ve thought about that quite a lot during the first almost year I’ve been the executive director. And you know what – my vision in not necessarily the important one. Having been “Deming-ized” back in the late 80s and early 90s, I think it’s very important that members of the association are integral parts of developing our vision and mission statements. If you’ve noticed, there are not vision and mission statements on our website – there should be! So as part of this first blog post, I’m asking for your ideas.


We know through the great work of our Naming the Profession committee that we have defined what we do as the “Personal Finance” profession.


With that in mind we can start – “The AFCPE mission is to….. Personal Finance by…..”


I look forward to hearing some of your ideas to build our mission statement as we look into the second decade of the twenty-first century.


- Gordon Genovese


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