3 Black Finance Influencers You Should Know

The three Black finance influencers we spoke with use their personal experience, identity, education and expertise to offer information and educational resources on saving, budgeting, investing, retirement planning, the use of credit and other personal finance topics. Here's what they have to say about their passion for finance and the ways in which being a Black woman influences their work.

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Staying in the Black​is a podcast devoted to teachers and money that helps teachers live well on their salaries. The host, Ms. Black (she/her), is an educator in the public school system in New York City. A single mom who owns two properties, has a hefty private retirement account and is one mortgage away from living debt-free, she provides actionable steps to make the best use of a teacher's financial options. We invited Ms. Black to tell us more about her work at ​Staying in the Black​.

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Sapling:​ What started your passion for financial education in personal finance for teachers?

Ms. Black:​ The buddy teacher that was assigned to me as a first-year teacher started me on my personal finance journey. She wanted me to have information that was shared with her and would assure that I could take care of myself financially. After blindly following her great advice, I began to read more about personal finance and started applying what I learned to my teacher's life and sharing with other educators who encouraged me to share my knowledge more broadly.

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Sapling:​ How has your identity as a Black woman influenced your work and the way you connect with your audience?

Ms. Black:​ I authentically share my experience as a single Black mother and how I manage to be on a solid financial foundation on an educator's salary. I always remind my audience that personal finance is personal, and they have to make the best decision for themselves, and their family based on their numbers and priorities.

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Staying in the BlackIG @stayingintheblk Website

Amal Hagisufi​ (she/her) works to bring personal finance content to her audience through her social media presence. She speaks directly to her audience, the majority of which is women of color, about their personal finance challenges. The focus of her ​dosesofher​ brand is to provide the knowledge needed to close the wealth gap in this country. We invited Ms. Hagisufi to tell us about her work at ​dosesofher.

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Sapling:​ What started your passion for personal finance?

Amal Hagisufi:​ My passion for financial education in personal finance developed through a couple of experiences. I initially had interest in finance as a student in college. I knew that the typical 9-5 job was not a good fit for me, so I studied economics and business. After college, I went on to pursue a career in teaching. I was teaching in a low-income area and realized what these parents lacked was personal finance knowledge and generational wealth. The more I delved in, the more I realized that there is something missing from BIPOC communities, and I wanted to create change. So, in 2016, I left education to begin work as a financial advisor. Entering that position gave me a realistic look into what I already knew. While I am no longer at that company, I have developed a passion for educating others in personal finance, especially minorities, women and people of color.

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Sapling:​ How has your identity as a Black woman influenced your work and the way you connect with your audience?

Amal Hagisufi:​ Because I am a Black woman, everything that I pursue is affected by my identity, especially my work in finance. I love being able to cultivate an interest in personal finance in my audience. Women of color make up the majority of my viewers and a lot of the content I create is specifically geared toward their needs and closing the wealth gap that exists in the United States. I am able to leverage my identity as a Black woman to speak directly to the challenges we face. There aren't a lot of women that look like us in this industry and I want to ensure that we have access to the knowledge that will get us to where we want to be.

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dosesofherIG @dosesofher YouTube TikTok

Bola Sokunbi​ (she/her) is the founder of ​Clever Girl Finance​. Ms. Sokunbi is a Certified Financial Education Instructor, money expert and best-selling author. In 2021, the National Council of Financial Educators awarded her the Financial Education Instructor of the Year (FEIY) Award. We invited Ms. Sokunbi to tell us about her work at ​Clever Girl Finance​.

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Sapling:​ What started your passion for financial education in personal finance for your audience?

Bolo Sokunbi:​ My passion for financial education first came from my own need several years ago to gain financial literacy as an immigrant and recent college grad getting used to the American financial system. I struggled to find resources I could relate to as a woman and as I learned and expanded my own knowledge, I wanted to share it with friends, family and other women like me. Over time I realized there was a real need for financial literacy and building financial confidence, especially amongst women living in today's society of social media pressures that shames you for money mistakes or for not having achieved a certain financial status.

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Sapling:​ Has your identity as a Black woman influenced your work and the way you connect with your audience?

Bolo Sokunbi:​ Absolutely. My identity as a Black woman is integral to who I am and to my life and financial journey. I speak and share my perspectives and experiences as a Black woman as a result, my business attracts other Black women (and beyond). I certainly recognize the challenges Black women and other women of color face when it comes to achieving financial wellness (both socially and economically). My goal is to challenge and change that narrative.

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Clever Girl FinanceIG @clevergirlfinance YouTube Website

Note: Interviews have been edited for length and clarity.

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