Real Money, Real Experts

When I’m 65: Preparing to be a financial caregiver with AFC® Corey Carlisle

November 09, 2021 AFCPE® Season 1 Episode 39
Real Money, Real Experts
When I’m 65: Preparing to be a financial caregiver with AFC® Corey Carlisle
Show Notes Transcript

According to the US Census Bureau, one in five Americans will be aged 65 or older by the end of this decade. Unfortunately, this growing population is also most at risk for financial fraud and exploitation.

Today on Real Money, Real Experts, co-hosts Rebecca Wiggins and Dr. Mary Bell Carlson are joined by AFC® Corey Carlisle, Senior Vice President at the American Bankers Association and Executive Director of the ABA Foundation. In this episode, Corey dives into what it means to become a financial caregiver for an older generation and how we can provide more resources and tools to support them as they serve this vulnerable population.

Corey also gives us a sneak peek of his Symposium topic, discussing the need for financial inclusion for previously incarcerated citizens. If you’re interested in hearing more from Corey, don’t miss his panel discussion during the 2021 AFCPE Symposium happening November 15 - 19!

Show Notes:

00:52 Corey Introduction
01:49 Corey’s Journey Into the Field
02:44 The American Bankers Association
04:46 Corey’s Journey towards the AFC®
07:33 Financial Caregiving
10:10 Be Aware – Scams Targeting the Elderly
12:05 Having Those Tough Conversations with your Loved Ones
16:32 Financial Wellbeing for Previously Incarcerated Citizens
22:36 Corey’s Two Cents

 Show Note links:

Connect with Corey!

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/coreycarlisle
Twitter: @FinHealthCorey

Resources
aba.com/foundation
aba.com/consumers
https://www.aba.com/advocacy/community-programs/finedlink
https://bankingjournal.aba.com/2018/11/a-financial-caregiver-chances-are-youll-be-one-or-youll-need-one/
https://www.aba.com/advocacy/community-programs/safe-banking-for-seniors
https://www.nia.nih.gov/
https://www.consumerfinance.gov/consumer-tools/educator-tools/resources-for-older-adults/
https://www.aba.com/banking-topics/operations/diversity-equity-inclusion
https://joinbankon.org/ 

 

Intro:

Welcome to Real Money, Real Experts, a podcast where leading financial counseling and coaching experts share their stories, their challenges, and their advice for helping people manage money in the real world. I'm your host, Rebecca Wiggins, Executive Director of the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education® or AFCPE®. And I'm your cohost, Dr. Mary Bell Carlson. I'm an Accredited Financial Counselor®, or AFC®, and the CEO of Chief Financial Mom. Every episode, we're taking a deep dive into the topics that the personal finance professionals care about: helping clients, building community and your professional growth. Welcome everyone to the Real Money, Real Experts podcast.

Rebecca Wiggins:

I'm Rebecca.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

This is Mary. Thanks for taking the time to join us today.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Today on the show we are talking with Corey Carlisle. Corey is a Senior Vice President at the American Bankers Association, as well as the Executive Director of the ABA Foundation. He oversees the organization’s philanthropic efforts as well as programs that support the industry’s efforts around financial education, affordable housing, and other community development activities. Prior to joining ABA, he was the Policy and Government Affairs Director at the Low Income Investment Fund and was the Associate Vice President of Governmental affairs at the Mortgage Bankers Association. Corey will be leading a panel discussion at the AFCPE Symposium focused on financial inclusion for justice-involved populations. I’ve also had the good fortune of getting to know Corey through our JumpStart Coalition Board service and he is a tremendous leader. He also recently earned his AFC designation! So, we have a lot of great things to talk about. Thanks for joining us today, Corey!

Corey Carlisle:

Nice to be here Rebecca and Mary. Thank you for having me.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

Tell us a little bit more about you and how you got into this field.

Corey Carlisle:

I have been in and out of the field and policy and practice around the financial health of individuals and communities since I started as a 20 something staffer on the United States Senate finance committee. Learning and working about how the lives of everyday Americans can be improved through interventions from public private partnerships, to the importance of effective tax policy and other interventions that can help the, our underserved communities. And it's through those experiences that I've gone in and out of , basically the banking industry or the community development field. And now I find myself really at my dream job overseeing the American Bankers Associations non -profit philanthropic subsidiary, the ABA Foundation, where I get to put all of that experience to use.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

That's awesome. Can you tell us a little bit more about the ABA and its philanthropic foundation.

Corey Carlisle:

As the name implies, the ABA foundation i s the 501c3 arm of the American Bankers Association. And for your listeners, ABA is the largest financial services trade association representing the 2 million employees in that industry. And that safeguard about $19 trillion in deposits and $11 trillion in loans every single day. The ABA Foundation was actually founded in 1925 and has held true to its mission t o make communities better through financial education since then, and really through a comprehensive suite of consumer education, resources and initiatives. We try to empower our entire industry to really codify and instill important money skills for individuals and families at every stage of life.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

That sounds like a broad and vast mission. Tell us a little bit more about how our professionals can be involved with ABA and help with this philanthropic idea.

Corey Carlisle:

What's cool about working for the ABA foundation is everything we put out is free and turnkey for our industry. And as our foundation is about in creating those engagement opportunities with AFCPEs members and financial counselors and other nonprofit groups serving the community, we try to help make those pairings happen across the country. We have a whole suite of programming that's out there, again for banks to get involved. So whether you're talking to young children to seniors and everyone in between, we have really got a turnkey solutions. And then as part of our engagement strategy, is if you would like to request to do a seminar or work in an event, or you'd like to have a banker volunteer come to your event. We created something called Fin Ed Link, and that's available at aba.com/finedlink. You can request a banker, any one of the thousands of bankers that participate in any one of those campaigns that we have going on across the country. We will pair you with a banker in your local area. So it's a really great win-win to create local synergy and connectivity between our banking industry and your counselors and other nonprofits and focused folks across the country.

Rebecca Wiggins:

That's awesome. Really interesting. So, Corey , I'm really interested to hear more about your journey to the AFC. I know you earned the accreditation earlier this year. Will you just share what made you interested in getting the designation and how you feel like that's going to inform your work moving forward?

Corey Carlisle:

It's such a fantastic certification and again, AFCPE made it so easy. And during this pandemic, like so many folks, was really looking for, I could not watch one more , uninteresting documentary or reality TV show on Netflix. I had reached the end of it. So , while I've been working with clients and in the field of financial capability and financial wellbeing for most of my career, this certification really seemed like, you know, a really high achievement for me. So I really set on a path to kind of on a self exploration , but also a dedicated path to finishing all the modules and working through the core curriculum , and eventually thankfully passing the exam on my first try. And it's just fantastic. I learned so much more even about the people that I hope to serve, we serve every single day. But it also, it's made me a much more effective leader and I'm already looking forward to taking all that experience even to go the next step and perhaps even look for additional certifications in my career. So it was a really great experience that I really I'm tremendously grateful for. Just really the ease in which AFCPE and particularly during COVID made a self-paced learning environment that gave me the opportunity to earn that AFC. So thank you so much.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Yeah. And it makes me think actually what you were just talking about in terms of like partnership opportunities too, for how we can really at the field level, how we can engage from the banking side of it, as well as the side of where our professionals are. Sometimes they're the same, you know, sometimes we have people that are already working in a financial institution, but how can we create some of those linkages to where, like you guys are providing that ability to connect with a banker. And maybe this is that type of example or model where bankers can then also know that these professionals or this certification exists. And how can we help one another? I think that just as you were talking, that just kind of reminded me of some things I think we can continue to strive for as a field and create more of those linkages across areas of specialty.

Corey Carlisle:

Absolutely. The field of banking is changing so rapidly and basically everybody has a bank in their pocket, right? In the form of their phone and how we help individuals navigate the new brave world of money is really exciting and cha-, poses challenges for us as an industry, but also has a lot of opportunities to reach people that we might not have been able to reach before. So absolutely these synergies and working together really will help us hopefully prepare people so they can make effective financial choices throughout their life.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

Corey, tell us a little bit more. You wrote an article called "A Financial Caregiver: Chances Are You’ll Be One or You’ll Need One." And that within the ABA banking journal, we'll include the link in our show notes below. Tell us a little bit more about what this idea of financial caregiving means and this idea of growing population of Americans over the age of 65.

Corey Carlisle:

One of the programs that my board of directors, and as I surveyed banks, that we had a little bit of a blind spot in serving a very vulnerable population. And that is our seniors. Just throw a couple stats at you, that one in five Americans will be aged 65 or older by the end of this decade, according to the US Census Bureau. And they make up an even larger portion, as you might imagine of the banking market relative to the general population. Unfortunately, this also makes them targets for criminal financial exploitation. And as you know, and likely many of the financial counselors and listeners here have likely encountered firsthand, that there's a difficulty managing tasks such as bill paying is often some of the first signs of cognitive decline. So we created a , a campaign called Safe Banking for Seniors. We've enlisted the help of 44 state bank associations and thousands of banks across the country , to really , do a better job and understand how we can spot report and work with our older customers that might be vulnerable to financial fraud and exploitation. And through that work, we found that one of the most important concepts that we need to , to stand up as this concept of financial caregiving , we often think of the people helping our seniors in a physical standpoint, right, helping them with medical decisions and all the directives and things that we encourage our clients to have. But , there might be people in your life that you actually want to help you with your financial life separate and apart from your physical, but even so those conversations, we try to encourage folks to have them early on in life. You may be helping an older loved one or in your family or a friend, just making sure they pay their bills. And we find that that relationship can evolve over time to eventually the older person may need actually somebody who's sort of formalized in their life to be a fiduciary, have responsibility over making sure that bills get paid on time. And then of course, as life events happen, they might be an executor or trustee of the person's estate. But it's really a cycle that we have tried to create more awareness about. And that was really the key to that article, which is because our , the demographics in this country are changing so rapidly. Either because you're going to be an older person, you're going to need somebody who'd be that financial caregiver in your life, or you're going to be entrusted as somebody who's going to be financial caregiving for somebody , older. So that's the concept of financial caregiving and we've put out several resources and tools to support that initiative.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

You know, it's amazing looking back on that you wrote that article in 2018, and I think lo and behold, you didn't know what was coming around the corner in 2020. And it has just, I feel like the pandemic has really emphasized what you just shared of needing to have these talks and have that communication, have the plan set up well in advance because the pandemic especially has taken a hard hit on that older population. And it's becoming, we're seeing this more and more. What are you hearing in ABA circles in terms of targeting and scams towards older folks ?

Corey Carlisle:

Well, one thing we do know is the scammers are always one step ahead and there's no shortage of ingenuity on their behalf. Many of us know of like the online romance scams that's happening. And we're seeing an uptake in that. We're hearing that from the Justice Department. In fact, we're supporting them right now on a money mule initiative. It's amazing how many folks unaware are helping transfer money around for criminals. But just , scams that are, that have been around for a long time, but still keep seeming to rear their ugly heads. For example, the Jamaican lottery. People think they've been , they get a notification that they've won a lottery of some , in some other country, but in , of course, to claim the winnings, they have to pay taxes on that amount. And of course , you have to give your transfer information over to a fraudster, and then of course they've taken the money and run with it. And then they'll probably also try to exploit you for other types of crimes as well. Once they know , they've got a willing victim , on their hand, but there's no shortage of these crimes. And we're seeing a big uptick in these types of crimes focused at the elderly. And of course, financial crimes happen to all different ages. Even young people get taken in by scams, but the real differences for older people, they have less ability to recover when a scam happens. And unfortunately, we are seeing a lot of , really dire data that suggests that when an older person is victimized, they feel obviously very embarrassed or ashamed, and that can have really bad consequences for their finances and their mental stability.

Rebecca Wiggins:

I'm wondering too. And Corey , I'll, I'll ask you this first and then maybe Mary has some thoughts on it as well. I'm also hearing, you know, even just from friends and family members, as you have someone in your life who is someone that, you know, a loved one who's aging, how do you start having some of those hard conversations? Maybe it isn't fraud, but it is something about like mental decline or, you know, just not having the organizational skills or not wanting to think about end of life things. How do you start having some of those conversations? I'm just curious from both of your perspectives, maybe start with Corey here.

Corey Carlisle:

The folks I talked to and the experts in this arena, and, you know , the National Institute of Health, they have a Department of Aging, the CFPB, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau have some really great guides about having those discussions in case anyone wants any resources on the topic. But in general, you know , a lot of people go home for the holidays. And thankfully with the pandemic seem to be a little more manageable right now. Hopefully people are able to see their loved ones, but it's a really good time to just sort of take notice, ask you know some simple, hopefully not too invasive questions , and get those conversations started about how they're doing. If you happen to go home for the first time in a long time and you're seeing a lot of unpaid bills laying around, that could be a sign for example. And maybe just start asking some targeted questions, maybe enlisting the support of other family members to say, Hey, you know, I'm just, I don't often get home, but I'm seeing some troubling signs. Maybe I could enlist your help to sort of just keep an eye on a mom and dad. And again, or maybe you're seeing some real troubling signs like forgetfulness, or they are forgetting to pay bills, or suddenly you learn about the new friend that they've made, who they're suddenly paying , checks for or something like that. And you might want to do a little investigation , about these new friends in their life who sometimes can find their way to your loved ones, pocket books very quickly.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

Yeah. I think Rebecca, my thoughts on this is you've got to start the conversation and, you know, I think we put this off a long time and think, oh, well , I'll do that when I'm 60 or I'll do that when I'm 70 or 80 and, and the time just keeps continuing to pass. But what I've seen in the last couple of years is really whether it's cancer, whether it's COVID no matter what it is, it doesn't discriminate with age. And so sometimes we have this false sense of security when we're younger and maybe in our twenties, thirties, and forties thinking, oh, I'll get to that someday. And I think that's the beginning of the faulty reasoning is someday is today, right? And sometimes that happens quicker and I've had a couple of personal examples. My brother died at the age of 35 and then my grandfather just passed away about a month ago from COVID. In both of those situations, they were complicated. There wasn't a will left behind. In my grandfather's case, it was a different, there were two powers of attorneys that were both over healthcare and some things, and it's just left a really complicated situation for our family and some struggles kind of going on. So I would say one of the things I think that's so important is just start talking about money. One of the things I encourage my students to start with is just asking the question: tell me about your money history. And I feel like when someone talks about their money history and what I mean by money history is, is what's happened in your past and have conversations of why you look at money how that played out. For example, my grandparents grew up very poor. They grew up right after the depression, right in the midst of different wars. And so get them talking about that. What was it like growing up for them without money and , and how's that affected them today. And I feel like when you start with those kinds of discussions, it can lead into present day discussions without being offensive. Because sometimes if you just come in and say, Hey, mom or dad, you're kind of losing your mind. Let me take your keys, let me, you know, hand over your checkbook or whatever the case may be. There's some resistance there. And so for me, I think the most important thing is to start talking about money period. And the more you talk about it, the more easier it can become of, once you discover a little bit more about them , find out more present. So how are you feeling now about money? What does that look like for you? Are there some things you're struggling with? If so, are there some things that maybe I could help you with or is there someone else in the family that could help take over. If you start talking about it and making it more relatable, the easier it is going to be to have, it's not a single conversation. It's multiple conversations over time.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Yeah. It reminds me of the importance of building rapport with clients. And sometimes you forget to do that with the people that you love the most, right. And then as you were talking about that, I thought, it also helps you build empathy for when people make decisions that maybe we think they should be doing something different. Now you have that sort of history, at least from their lens. And like you said, you can bring it to present day and even future planning. So thank you both for that. I, I, I think that's something a lot of people are experiencing with the population aging. And so I think those are really good tips. So Corey , I want to shift a little bit because we are really excited about your panel discussion at the upcoming symposium and you are going to be focusing on, and I'm going to let you tell us a little bit more about it, but you're going to be focusing on people that have a criminal record. I'd love to know a little bit more about the data points you have around this. And then even just like what ABA is doing to focus in this space in terms of financial inclusion and just maybe a little teaser, so people can make sure that they register and hear more about it at the Symposium, but I'm really excited about it. I think it's such a great topic and you know, we've done a little bit of work in this space too. And so I'm just really interested in your expertise around it.

Corey Carlisle:

Thank you, Rebecca. And I am just really excited and grateful to AFPCE for giving me the opportunity to present at this year's conference and really share our data and the story and bring, for so many folks in my career at which is coming up on nine years at the ABA foundation, it was interesting to me to hear the stories about how so many banks are focusing their financial education and financial wellbeing programming at our prison population. Particularly the folks that are reentering or planning or about to reenter and leave the prison system and having that financial foothold is so important to ensuring that we break this horrible cycle of our citizens that's going on and to ensure people's financial health and wellbeing is met so that they can get on with their lives. And let me just give you a couple of points that I'll explain more at the conference, but we're going to be issuing a paper. The timing could not be any better, approximately 7.7 or so million people in the United States have had some sort of jail time. Just two years ago, there was over 2 million people in our , the United States criminal justice system. And then, there's another 47 million people that have some form of a criminal record. And we all know that again, another ugly truth to these statistics are that it's , that racial minorities make up a vast disproportionate percentage of those numbers. And what our brief is planning to spotlight is the challenges this fac-, this population faces and becoming banked. One of the data points you might be surprised or not surprised to learn is that a third of this population, before they go into the prison system, lack any relationship to a financial institution, all they have no bank account or credit, you know , the account with a credit union or a bank. We're finding that. What was really neat about this particular report is we also combined all of these statistics and learnings about the fragility of this vulnerable population, but we combined it with case studies of three or four banks across the country that had been partnering with folks like your listeners or nonprofits or with the correctional system to really focus on the re-entry and even a couple of coalitions. You may have heard of the organiz-, a movement called Bank On. Which is a movement that the financial institutions are , are promoting to basically offer safe and affordable and very low cost accounts , for people. So we also looked at a Bank On coalition in Lansing, Michigan. So at your conference , on the 15th, we're going to, I'm going to bring a couple of those amazing bankers to the conversation as well as a really great expert at Oklahoma State , that I know, you know, well, and , I just think it's going to be a fantastic session for your attendees, and I'm really again very grateful that you're letting us bring this story to life, to your attendees.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Yeah, I'm really excited about it personally. And Corey's mentioning Kate Mielitz is actually going to be on the panel discussion as well. So I know our listeners know her well , and she has a lot of experience in this from the financial counseling perspective as well. So I'm excited about the discussion. And then we also have another local program here that was in coordination with a nonprofit called Healing Broken Circles, where one of our fabulous AFC professionals and I had the good fortune of being a small part of this, but she went up really until COVID , until we couldn't get into the correctional institution and did lots of financial education workshops. These folks then sat for the Money Management Essentials, you know, test of completion and are bringing some of that back in house to their, to the folks that they're working with now. And that has been an incredible program. And so they're going to actually also have a breakout session, really talking to your point about how can we again, make these integrations across, like when people are coming back into society out, you know, outside of prison and they're trying to get their life established. Many of them walk out of there with $0 or, you know, such a small amount that it's very difficult for them to, to not fall prey, to maybe some of the challenges that they experienced that led them into their prison sentence. And so it's just that we've learned so much through that program, met some incredible people and really that integration of like, how do we combine these services once people are out? And what we're doing now with this pilot program is the AFC is we did it a little match savings program in combination with an AFC doing some financial counseling work with these two folks. And so , there's also going to be a breakout session that talks about that model, how we can explore some of this work together, and then I'd love to , to follow up Corey and find out like, how can we, again, kind of coordinate these efforts from the AFC standpoint and the banking standpoint, so that folks really have this wraparound care and can really set themselves up for success once they've served their time and are reentering society, so to speak. So I really am excited about your, your expertise in this and what you're bringing. And can't wait to read more about that paper. And of course we'll share it with our network and our attendees as well.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

Corey , we are excited to have you at the conference this year. Thank you so much for coming and thank you for your time on this interview. At the end of each interview, we'd like to get the guests two cents, or biggest takeaways for our listeners. If you had one piece of advice to offer financial professionals, what would it be ?

Corey Carlisle:

I would say money is a journey. It's one journey that you keep learning , and what you learn can be spread to everyone around you.

Rebecca Wiggins:

I love it. Thank you so much, Corey, will you tell our listeners where they can connect with you on social media or your website?

Corey Carlisle:

Our website is the aba.com/foundation. And you can connect with me on LinkedIn, under my name Corey Carlisle , or you can find me on Twitter @finhealthcorey.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Thank you so much for joining us today. It's always a pleasure talking with you, but I , I really enjoyed our conversation today. I know that we have lots of resources to share with our listeners. So thanks for coming on.

Corey Carlisle:

Thank you.

Dr. Mary Bell Carlson:

Rebecca talking to Corey reminds me of my days on the hill back in DC, and there's so much that associations have to offer. I love that he comes from American Bankers Association and there's just a long list of resources that often don't make it all the way to the provider. And so it's great to have Corey on so he can connect us not only to ABA resources, but he also mentioned some from CFPB® , and some other ones from NIA. So we're glad to be able to get connected at the top levels. Also to know that they're getting into the hands of those who have direct contact with clients. One of the things I really liked that Corey mentioned is this idea of money as a journey. And I think that could be in an episode all in itself of how money is part of a journey and that it's not a destination and there's so much that goes along with it. So just food for thought. But I really enjoyed knowing, especially about financial caretaking and being able to reach out to special populations that not only is it being done, but you too can be a part of that. If that's something that you want to also include in your practice.

Rebecca Wiggins:

Corey is definitely one of the good ones. He's been such a joy to get to know, like I said, through our JumpStart board service and has become really a friend, but somebody that I really admire in his leadership. And so it's been really great to see the work that they're focused on at the, at the foundation. And I'm excited as you know, I think that we talked about a couple of different opportunities, really for collaboration and synergy across the field. So that's exciting as well. And I encourage our professionals to know more about what programs they provide and, you know, together, we can come up with some ideas of ways we can interact and bring our professionals and their expertise to some of that work as well. I can't wait for the Symposium session. I mean, you know, I said that this is a program that we've kind of been doing or piloting , locally. And so it'll be great to have Corey lead that panel discussion and kind of find out some other things around financial inclusion for folks who've, who've been previously incarcerated. And of course our very own Kate Mielitz let's, we'll be on that panel. And so if you have not yet registered to attend, you definitely still can. We have amazing speakers like this panel discussion. Please go to the website to register and join us next week, November 15th through 19th, we can't wait to see you.

Outro:

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