Aug 24, 2018

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks to SecureFutures CEO Brenda Campbell

Brenda Campbell has played a pivotal role in developing SecureFuture's financial education programs that now serve thousands of youth in Wisconsin. Yet she continues to tinker to make her programs even better. Listen to Brenda as she describes how the model has evolved from in-class school programs to new initiatives like Money Coach. Her programs have achieved the holy grail for all financial education: positive and long-lasting behavioral change with her students. Her passion for the cause of financial capability comes through and you will enjoy hearing the success stories she has seen first-hand. Hear what Brenda thinks are key ingredients in curriculum development as well as what she has learned as a leader creating change in her community. Enjoy!


  • 0:00–1:00 Introduction
  • 1:01–3:15 It all started with a call-to-action letter…
  • 3:16–6:21 What makes the program special: business education volunteers
  • 6:22–10:07 “Foundational financial education is NOT rocket science”
  • 10:08–13:09 The key to success is supporting the teachers
  • 13:10–18:35 Students’ favorite in-class activities!
  • 18:36–20:32 How the success of the Money Sense program is measured
  • 20:33–24:31 Jeremy King, from student to Board of Directors member
  • 24:32–25:07 A word from NGPF
  • 25:08–29:23 The evolution of the Money Coach program
  • 29:24–32:27 The 3 indicators of long-term financial capability
  • 32:28–34:02 On the cusp of expanding this model and programs
  • 34:03–36:54 Viewing the program through a social justice lens
  • 36:55–41:07 Great attributes of an effective personal finance course
  • 41:08–42:31 What’s next for SecureFutures? Introducing investing
  • 42:32–43:41 Conclusion

Resources Mentioned:

Secure Futures programs:

  • Money Sense, the financial education program
  • Money Path, the upcoming program focused on the impact of financial decisions
  • Money Coach, the mentoring program


  • “The sweet spot... is getting to teens before they made [financial] mistakes, but while the information is relevant to them.”
  • “5:15ish Our focus is to make… once you engage them, you have them 6:18?”
  • “The three indicators of financial capability: … 1) they have to be banked…and learn how to responsibly manage that bank account... 2) they have to be able to track their expenses… 3) they have to… learn how to create a budget.”
  • “What excites me the most is that after 5 years after launching this [Money Coach] program, we have a longitudinal study looking at the outcomes of the students that completed the first 4 years, and they are exceptional outcomes.”

About the Authors

Danielle Bautista

Danielle is a native of Southern California and a recent graduate from the University of Maine, where she braved the frigid winters—a feat in and of itself—and earned her Bachelor's degree in International Affairs. She has a passion for working with non-profit organizations and serving populations in underprivileged communities. When Danielle isn't writing NGPF blog posts, spearheading various outreach projects, or managing contests and flash surveys, you can find her doing some sort of outdoor activity, learning a new hobby, or cracking what she thinks are witty puns!

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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