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Q&A with Army Veteran Douglas P. McCormick on Veterans and Financial Literacy

July 8, 2016
FeaturedmediaImage_Family Inc

HOW ARE YOU SUPPORTING THE PAT TILLMAN FOUNDATION AND WHY HAVE YOU CHOSEN TO DO SO?

“I wrote FAMILY INC. to help every American achieve financial independence. However, as a veteran Army officer, I am especially committed to empowering the veteran community with financial education. So I have partnered with numerous veteran service organizations – including the Tillman Foundation – to raise awareness, give away books, and donate royalties to support their Tillman Scholar Program.

Most Americans appreciate the sacrifices our service members have made for our country, but few understand the unique financial challenges our veterans face while serving, upon career transition to the civilian workforce, and upon retirement. These service members are incredibly talented, have exceptional life experiences and a ‘can do’ attitude—they don’t need our charity. However, they do need opportunities to prove themselves and assistance with effectively redeploying their skills to a new field in the civilian work force. I believe that FAMILY INC. can serve as a valuable roadmap to maximizing their opportunity and achieving financial independence. By partnering with the Tillman Foundation and other organizations like The PenFed Foundation and The Institute for Veterans and Military Families, I am donating copies of the book and raising money to support their important work in the areas of education, financial literacy, and economic empowerment.”

WHY DID YOU CHOSE TO WRITE FAMILY INC.?

“I wrote this book because I saw a real need and an opportunity to have a positive impact on a lot of people seeking a better way to navigate the financial game of life.

Financial illiteracy is one of the biggest challenges America faces today with negative implications for our national and economic security as well as quality of life among Americans. In spite of its importance, our education system does not effectively teach this important life skill and I found the “do it yourself” resources lacking—too simplistic, too narrow or too technical.

They say money can’t buy happiness and I certainly agree.  However, the lack of it sure can make life challenging.  My goal for this book is to empower readers with a framework for identifying and navigating life’s most important financial decisions.  Improving financial literacy and independence empowers readers to pursue their passions and maximize their potential.”

HOW IS FAMILY INC. DIFFERENT FROM OTHER PERSONAL FINANCE OR INVESTING BOOKS?

“Most books in this genre fall into one of two broad descriptions: technical how-to books that are action-oriented and rigorous, but not accessible to most of America; or holistic financial advice books that are oversimplified goal-setting tools (i.e. “wouldn’t it be great if we all saved more, spent less and had no debt?”). My approach borrows the best of both worlds.  While the book is conversational and the framework addresses every financial decision a family must make, its intellectual rigor is uncompromised. As a result, this book is relevant for any family member regardless of financial sophistication, wealth or life stage.”

EXPLAIN THE BASIC PREMISE OF FAMILY INC.

“FAMILY INC. is based on the premise that your family is a business, and the Family CFO is responsible for managing that business’ two primary assets: labor and financial capital. The labor business involves “selling” family members’ skills and energy for money, while the asset management business involves growing that money to support your spending needs today and in the future, long after you retire. This new paradigm allows the Family CFO to use many of the everyday tools of the world of business to identify life’s important decisions, understand how to customize your financial plan to your unique circumstances, and monitor your progress on the way to winning the financial game of life.”

WHY DO YOU BELIEVE PROMOTING FINANCIAL LITERACY CAN HAVE SUCH A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE VETERAN COMMUNITY?

“Military service presents some unique challenges and opportunities in a person’s journey to financial independence. Challenges include the fact that service members are likely to navigate mid-career changes, often with young families, little savings and without the benefit of a long standing community network and relationships given frequent moves while in service. However, their service experience has also developed important life skills such as leadership, teamwork, communication and discipline. FAMILY INC. was written to be a valuable resource for veterans to assist them in maximizing the value of these important life skills while minimizing the negative impact of the challenges outlined above.  By empowering veterans to achieve financial independence, it allows them to continue to pursue careers of impact and service to the Nation and their communities.”

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