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 Valerie Coleman  Morris Image

Valerie Coleman Morris

Emmy Award-Winning Journalist; Leading Expert on Financial Literacy and Independence; Popular Radio Personality and Host of "With The Family in Mind"

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Fee Range:
$10,000 - $15,000


Emmy award-winning journalist Valerie Coleman Morris is a former business anchor for CNN Domestic and CNN International. In her later years at CNN, Morris reported primarily on personal finance issues with a daily segment called "Smart Assets." In 2007, Morris decided to follow her passion and focus exclusively on financial literacy as an aspect of business and social economics. Her core interest is financial literacy and self-reliance for women and people of color, two of the most disenfranchised segments of the population concerning money issues. Morris continues to write and narrate the nationally-syndicated radio column she created titled "With the Family in Mind." Debuting in 1986 and currently airing on CBS Network Radio, this immensely popular program highlights family and sandwich generation issues and their money implications. A sought-after lecturer on financial literacy and astute money management, Morris works as a facilitator, keynote speaker and Mistress of Ceremonies for senior executive conferences, corporate staff and employee special events, motivating audiences to understand and pursue the path to financial independence.

Speech Topics

Morris discusses dealing with marriage and money goals of couples such as whether to co-mingle money in marriage, how to cooperate in managing risk tolerance differences, and saving for retirement while managing a growing family.

This compelling presentation offers concrete, incremental ways to actively reduce and control debt – for life – such as how parents manage to stay on course when faced with adult children 18-34 boomeranging, returning home to get their financial legs under them. What are the rules/terms of engagement when this happens? Money issues are in the midst of this arrangement: it’s the red zone for parents who are considering retirement since they have little time to generate additional income.

Morris examines money issues for seniors and how their Baby Boomer adult children can help manage the cost of those issues for their parents. Morris also provides tips on how to get reluctant elders to share their important information with a caring, responsible adult child. And, how these adult care giving children can help their parents without derailing their own future financial needs.

60% of 60 year olds – male and female – say they’re postponing retirement. Women find themselves far behind in retirement savings. Although women ages 55-68 control 65% of the spending choices in America – in retirement they’re descending into poverty.

Straightforward, easy ways to teach children about money from as early as age 3.

Morris discusses money issues surrounding divorce and widowhood and the importance of women knowing that it’s their responsibility to know where the family money is and how it is impacted by divorce or widowhood.

The Sandwich Generation is made up of adults caught in the middle. Adults 45 to 65, most often, are facing the dilemma of raising their own children while assisting aging parents, or actively monitoring a frail parent’s decline. The financial concerns are real. Retirement nearing but perhaps now re-set; kids going to college or boomeranging home to get their financial feet under them; elder parents that are frail and often outliving their carefully stashed retirement savings. It’s the portrait of the vast majority of American adults. It’s no easier for the old to get older than it is for their adult children to deal with the role reversal of becoming the “parenting child”. Respecting elder independence, managing aging parent healthcare needs long-distance, transitions with growing and grown children, new families/stepfamilies, divorce, widowhood and second marriages – Morris explores how to balance all the needs and cooperate and craft effective resolutions.

There’s nothing like a financial crisis to change attitudes. Women everywhere are dealing with daunting, if not massive, financial dilemmas for a number of reasons: divorce, downsizing, children, stepchildren, aging or frail parents, career changes-and-ceilings. All of them are attitude-changing situations, and all of them – in some way – are enormously impacted by money. Since 90 percent of women at some point in their lifetime will be solely responsible for the financial needs of their family, every woman needs to get a financial life. Right or wrong, good or bad, money is an immediate measure of what you can do with your financial future.

We can’t lead with yesterday’s leadership skills. While character, intelligence and judgment are still important and essential for good leadership, there are new tools that need to be added to the mix. Morris believes leadership encompasses the ability to be a storyteller — to assist people in discovering their own identities, which will lead to more cooperative productivity and support. Leadership also means to understand, assume and nurture financial literate and responsible people. Today’s new leaders understand the importance of work/family integration that members of the younger, global workforce are demanding.

Diversity – The 21st Century Commodity

Part of achieving a healthy State of the Family? is to know who’s responsible for its lifecycle orchestration. With the Family in Mind knows where the responsibility lies. Being a caregiver for those at the beginning of the life cycle – our children – or, for those at the end of the life cycle – our aging parents– is stressful under the very best of circumstances. With the Family in Mind reminds each of us that family matters. The intent is to look at family dynamics or experience and remind us how much we have in common. Morris has written thousands of these commentaries on topics that are the familiar, daily struggles for many families as they juggle the needs of multiple generations.

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