Member Minute, News/Accolades

Member Spotlight: Kuster Ltd. (The Money Godmother)

joannek

We would like to recognize in Kuster Ltd. in our current Member Spotlight.  Since 1980 Kuster Ltd. has been developing educational products, content and programs for a variety of organizations and businesses as well as a marketing communications company and custom publishing company called DynaMinds. (www.dynamindspublishing.com).

Kuster Ltd. is represented on the board by Joanne Kuster. Joanne and her husband Chuck created the “A.G.G.I.E.” board game, a really, really fun lesson on the profits and perils of farming. AGGIE games quickly spread to every state and 13 countries, as teachers, bankers and families ordered to learn how to buy and sell commodities. Meanwhile, Joanne wrote her first children’s book and subsequently sold it to a Fortune 500 firm that distributed more than 500,000 copies. Who knew? Those initial products led to myriad creations developed for businesses and organizations across the U.S. and Canada – Stock Market Pie: Grandma Helps Emily Make a Million, an investing journaland Entrepreneur Extraordinaire: Grandpa Helps Emily Build a Business. 

The “Money Godmother” is a Jump$tart superstar. Joanne attended her first JumpStart meeting sometime in 2000 and has since served in several capacities. While president in 2006, she connected with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and convinced them Iowa was poised to handle Money Smart Week. She has since helped the program grow across the state. Her passion for financial education has led Joanne to create several children’s books and games on money, investing, and entrepreneurship, including the popular “Wants and Needs” game and the “Balloony Game”.  She is an author of such books as Stock Market Pie: Grandma Helps Emily Make a Million, an investing journaland Entrepreneur Extraordinaire: Grandpa Helps Emily Build a Business.  She is a dynamic orator, speaking to audiences of college students, teachers, parents and other mentors who want ideas on how to better manage money and help others do the same.

Joanne also works as chair for Money Smart Week Iowa, an economic outreach program from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and is involved with the Iowa JumpStart Coalition. Check www.moneysmartweek.org/iowa and www.WomenandMoneyConference.com. She continues to help other entrepreneurs get started, and often speaks on entrepreneurship, saving and investing, and leaving a family legacy. She is a founding member of the Iowa Enterprise Network and Center for Financial Success, and has been recognized as SBA’s Midwest Home-Based Business Advocate of the Year.

For more information, visit her website at http://moneygodmother.com/.

Member Minute, News/Accolades

Member Spotlight: EverFi

EverFi LogoWe would like to recognize EverFi in our current Member Spotlight. EverFi provides educators with engaging, online learning resources in topics such as financial education, digital literacy, STEM readiness, coding and entrepreneurship. EverFi partners with government entities, professional sports leagues, financial institutions and forward-thinking foundations to help bring the courses to schools at no cost. Over 400 schools and 20,000 students have participated in an EverFi course this year mostly through the Iowa Financial Literacy Program.

This member of the Iowa Jump$tart coalition is represented by Lincoln Hughes. Lincoln is Everfi’s Senior School Manager with his office here in Des Moines. Lincoln earned his Master of Education from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2012 graduating Magna Cum Laude. His BA is in economics and political science from Hamline University in St. Paul. In addition to graduating with honors, Lincoln was a standout on the Piper baseball team and took part in campus government.

Lincoln recently married Kayla. They are active members of the Plymouth Church in Des Moines. He is an avid cross-fit athlete and enjoys Yoga. Lincoln and Kayla are heading off on a vacation next week to meander through the Southern United States.

Member Minute, News/Accolades

Member Spotlight: Iowa Insurance Division

IowaInsuranceDivisionThe Iowa Insurance Division has been a strong advocate for financial literacy since being a founder of the Iowa JumpStart Coalition in 2000. Representing the Iowa Insurance Division is Craig Goettsch, Education and Budget Director. Craig has served as Iowa JumpStart secretary for more than 10 years, and continues to lead JumpStart’s membership committee.

Craig has been actively involved in nearly every JumpStart initiative, including funding programs, speaking, serving on committees, being an officer, drafting policies and by-laws, and providing counsel. He has been a leader and advocate for all of JumpStart’s annual conferences for teachers and for the annual Money Smart Week Iowa. In addition, Craig is a founder and trustee of the Investor Protection Trust, served as President of the North American Securities Administrators Association, served on numerous NASAA committees and on the Board of Directors. A graduate of the University of Iowa law school, Craig has also served as an adjunct professor and taught securities law at Drake Law School and the University of Iowa Law School. Under Craig’s direction, the Iowa Insurance Division has raised awareness for financial literacy across the state, with major initiatives for numerous programs in schools, educational organizations and nonprofits, and collaborations with other government agencies.

Find more information about the Iowa Insurance Division at: http://www.iid.state.ia.us/

Member Minute, News/Accolades

Jump$tart Member Spotlight: Iowa Attorney General’s Office

AttorneyGeneralWe would like to recognize the Iowa Attorney General’s Office as our current Member Spotlight. The Iowa AG is an advocate and resource for Iowans, providing consumer protection and information. Their website states that “The Consumer Protection Division protects Iowa consumers from fraud, ensures fair competition in the workplace, and informs the public about consumer frauds and how to avoid becoming a consumer fraud victim.” They frequently post information and alerts on their website to help Iowans protect their financial assets by preventing fraud. They also have a partnership with the Iowa Department of Human Services to provide a website called Be There that offers helpful information and links for strengthening families through good parenting. This website includes a money management section as well.

This long time member of the Iowa Jump$tart coalition is represented by Debra Moore. She has been an integral part of the coalition and has participated as president of the coalition and countless volunteer positions in committees such as teacher conference, marketing, and Money Smart Week.

You may find more about this member at: https://www.iowaattorneygeneral.gov/

Member Minute

Jump$tart Member Spotlight: Professional Educators of Iowa

PEIowaWe would like to recognize the Professional Educators of Iowa as our current Member Spotlight. Professional Educators of Iowa is a membership organization that consists of teachers, coaches, administrators, and many other professional educators. Their objectives are for professionalism and doing what is best for students. They represent their members with legal protection if such grievances should occur. They may also lobby for issues related to labor laws as well as education laws. They have an annual conference in summer that gives educators valuable information about advancing their careers.

This long time member of the Iowa JumpStart coalition is represented by Jim Hawkins and Mark Felderman. They have been huge supporters of Financial Literacy and are wonderful volunteers to accomplishing our mission.

You may find more their organization at: http://www.peiowa.org

Member Minute, News/Accolades

Jump$tart Member Spotlight: Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Mary Beth KaufmanMargaret VanGinkelToday we would like to recognize Iowa State University Extension and Outreach who is represented by Mary Beth Kaufman and Margaret Van Ginkel.
ISU Extention and Outreach contains a division of human sciences that offers many resources including those for family finances. They offer classes and information to the public about a wide range of financial issues.

Mary Beth who is Field Educator of Family Finance at the Extension in September received the R.K. Bliss Extension Award which recognizes outstanding achievement of an Iowa State Extension staff member for developing an overall or continuing extension education program. They describe her as being on the cutting edge of emerging issues such as flood recovery, mental health and poverty reduction. As well as JumpStart she is part of the leadership in Money Smart Week in Council Bluffs and Shelby County, and is Iowa’s liaison for the High School Financial Planning Program.

Margaret VanGinkel is also a Field Educator of Family Finance at the Extension and currently serves as Secretary for the Iowa Jump$tart Coalition. She received the R.K. Bliss Extension Award a few years ago. She manages the program in 4 counties which provides basic financial literacy to children and adults. She also helps with the hotline where people can call in to receive help for various financial issues. She is a very important resource as speaker and advisor for MoneySmart week. She also helps provide information to the public about retirement financial literacy.

You may find more about their organization at:
http://www.extension.iastate.edu/humansciences

Member Minute, News/Accolades

Jump$tart Member Spotlight: Mike Johnson

Mike JohnsonIowa Jump$tart is a coalition of members who seek to improve the personal financial literacy of all Iowans. To help you get to know our board members better, we will periodically spotlight members here.

For this spotlight, we are featuring Mike Johnson. Mike brings a wealth of financial education knowledge to the board – with his experience in helping both students and adults. Mike started teaching economics in high school 14 years ago, and is currently a teacher at SE Polk High School — where he helps teach students about financial literacy. Mike just started working as a financial planner, and in addition to teaching, also is an advisor with AO Wealth Advisory in Urbandale.