phuong NLC photo 2016.jpg
 

About


THE BASICS

In 2017, I started Just Wealth, a virtual, fee-only financial planning practice. I have over 10 years of experience as an educator. I am passionate about economic justice, and closing racial and gender wealth gaps. I transitioned from a career in K-12 public education to direct my lifelong passion for personal finance toward dismantling systemic economic inequality.

I am a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and completed the Financial Planning Program at Boston University, where I was the recipient of the Robert J. Glovsky Scholarship for Financial Planning. I received my B.A. from Dartmouth College, where I was a graduate of the Teacher Education Program and a recipient of the Woodrow-Wilson Rockefeller Brothers Fellowship for Aspiring Teachers of Color. I also earned my M.Ed in Special Education from Boston University.

I am a member of the CFP Board’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Council, to build pathways to attract and retain financial planners from diverse backgrounds into the financial planning profession. In addition, I am a member of the CFP Board's Ethics Working Group, to develop curriculum standards for all board-approved ethics trainings for CFP professionals. As a Financial Planning Facilitator for the Boston University Financial Planning Program, I provide coaching and technical assistance to online students.

As a volunteer with the Cambridge Women's Center, I provide pro bono financial counseling. I am a Boston Chapter Fellow of the New Leaders Council, a national nonprofit that recruits and trains young progressive leaders. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.

MY STORY

I started teaching myself about personal finance at a young age because I wanted to make my own rules about where and how I work. I never wanted to be beholden to a job, just for the money. I say all of this knowing that it’s a privilege to have that option - to do what you love.

I stumbled on financial planning as a career in 2012. Before then, I was a teacher in an urban public school system. But even just a year in, I saw how financial stress affected my students’ achievement. Every year, the students that were behind their peers, were almost always the ones from the most economically disadvantaged families, and usually the students of color. And even though I worked closely with my students’ parents, I felt limited in what I could do as a teacher to help fight the structural, historical and systemic inequities that stemmed from no fault of their own. So I did a lot of reflecting on a different career path and realized that I could tap into a lifelong passion for personal finance.

Why didn’t I think of financial planning sooner? Financial services was a world I didn’t see myself in. As a woman of color, and first-generation Southeast Asian-American, it was a space I knew nothing about and that frankly, I didn’t see core aspects of my identity reflected in. Also, I’d never heard of financial planning until I started intentionally looking for ways I could use my personal finance knowledge and education experience toward a different career.

Since the beginning of my financial planning career, my goal has been to provide objective, culturally proficient financial services and to clear barriers to wealth building. In 2013, I joined a nonprofit called Compass Working Capital as a financial coach, and transitioned to be their Director of Financial Services in 2015. I’ve hired and trained over twelve financial coaches, developed personal financial curriculum, and provided ongoing professional development for our team in the areas of financial coaching and counseling.

I truly love being a financial planner because 1) my clients are amazing people making the world a better place, 2) I’m 100% a personal finance nerd, and 3) I think knowing how to direct where wealth goes, and why much of it flows the way it does in the world, is power.

Get in touch with me at phuong@justwealthplanning.com.