Eradicating financial illiteracy one person
at a time
Alphonse Eugene, Jr.
Wealth educator, entrepreneur, and motivational speaker
Like many children growing up in the most powerful and prosperous country in the world, I transitioned from my parents’ home into society without a wealth education. My parents did not have a sound financial education themselves, so although they loved me dearly and wanted the best for me, it was impossible for them to adequately prepare me to be financially successful.
one in my immediate circle knew either! (Who would you go to for financial advice??) In most cases, even speaking in detail about financial matters was taboo.
Even those who were obviously struggling with money tended to suffer in silence (just like many of you are doing today). This is because they were too embarrassed to be honest about the financial issues they faced. I finally came to the conclusion that no one is born with a high financial IQ. Financial literacy is obtained through deliberate and intentional action, and there is no shortcut.
So not having a plan in place, eventually I spent the money I had saved. It was suggested to me that I should meet with a financial advisor, and they would help me create a plan to solidify my financial future. I met with an advisor, and invested in numerous financial products that were offered and began building what I thought was long-term security. I later came to realize that my advisor’s primary goal was to earn a living and provide for his own family, and that my financial security was secondary. I was taken advantage of and sold high-commission products that were not in my best interest. These products allowed my financial advisor to earn income from my investments, while simultaneously stagnating the performance of my portfolio. I realized that at their core, financial advisors are sales people first and foremost.
Although I was born with what I call a “savers gene”, I did not know what to do with the hard-earned money that I had accumulated. And no
I help others realize that life can be more than working hard
until old age, only to
be in debt, having accumulated little to no wealth; and not able to leave a legacy for the next generation.
Alphonse Eugene, Jr.
I then decided that if I wanted to obtain financial freedom, I had to take control of my own financial future (and you must too, because no one is coming to save you). I began reading numerous personal finance and investing books, and studying documentaries and teachings of some of the most prominent equity, bond and real estate investors in the world. I also studied notable leaders in the FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) community. I eventually raised my financial IQ and began investing on my own, moving my assets from the high-cost financial instruments to low-cost index funds, as well as acquiring real estate. Gaining knowledge and building my investment portfolio helped me to reach my goal of becoming financially independent.
On this journey, I have discovered that most Americans are unceremoniously dumped into the working world without much knowledge of financial planning and investing. Madison Avenue and Wall Street have done an excellent job of making the financial world seem too difficult and too sophisticated for the average person to succeed in. I have been inspired to help others realize that life can be more than working hard until old age, only to be in debt, having accumulated little to no wealth. My goal is to help others achieve financial independence, which gives you freedom. That freedom gives you choices and allows you to live life on your own terms.