About

What qualifies me to talk to you about your money?

Money is such a personal and important subject. You deserve to know the full scoop about “Professional Manisha” so you can decide if I’m someone you want to listen to.  Below is a summary of my academic, work, and media experience. Need a printable version of my bio? Click here. 

ACADEMIC

I earned my MBA from Harvard Business School in 1997, my BA from Wellesley College in 1992 (spending my junior year abroad studying at Oxford University studying Politics, Philosophy & Economics). I am also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder. I currently serve as a Financial Fellow at Wellesley College and am on Faculty at The Omega Institute’s Women’s Leadership Center.

PROFESSIONAL

I have spent over 20 years working in various aspects of the financial services industry.  At various points in my corporate career I worked as an analyst, portfolio manager, and client relations executive for institutional money management firms with billions of dollars in assets under management (SG Warburg, Atalanta/Sosnoff Capital Corp, Fayez Sarofim & Co. and Sands Capital Management). At the peak of my corporate career I built out and ran a $6 billion separately managed account business. In 2009, I launched my Financial Education practice. In 2012, I launched my Wealth Management practice.  Today I also serve as a consultant to TIAA-CREF’s Women’s Engagement Initiative and am on the National Board of the Girls Scouts of the USA.

MEDIA

My work has been featured in a wide range of national publications including: The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The Chicago Tribune, MORE, Glamour, and Real Simple. My national TV appearances on the subject of women and financial independence include: The Today Show, The Rachel Ray Show, CNN’s Your Bottom Line, and PBS’s Nightly Business Report. My MoneyZen blog also appears on The Huffington Post. For a full listing, visit my MEDIA page.

Why I focus on women

While I’m thrilled when my work reaches and helps the widest possible audience, I am extra passionate about helping women joyfully claim their financial power. This is why…

First, I grew up a nerdy, book-loving girl in a Midwestern town where cheerleaders ruled. Lacking the prom queen gene, I learned early on that “a man is not a financial plan.” Thankfully, my wonderful parents gave me the ultimate gift – that of financial literacy. As a result of being financially self-sufficient, a whole world of choices opened up for me. I want more women to have that same opportunity.

Second, while personal finance is important for both genders, it is extra important for women. Statistically speaking we earn less, live longer, and spend more time out of the workforce caring for family. As a result, two-thirds of women over the age of 65 today rely on meager Social Security payments as their primary source of income. To change these gut-wrenching statistics, we must make our financial well-being a priority.

Third, after spending my entire career in financial services, I’d say the default language of the industry is “male-speak.” Whether it’s “winning,” “fighting,” or “beating” the market, the day-to-day financial lingo is alienating and unappealing to many of us women. With MoneyZen Wealth Management, I have created a firm that embodies the positive qualities I observed in the Wall Street world (yes, there are some!) with language, values and goals that resonate with women. Simplicity. Abundance. Freedom. I want women to feel that personal finance is their language, too!

PBS Media

Click here to watch a 30-minute special on

Manisha’s work, produced by Houston
PBS / Living Smart with Patricia Gras.

Ten things to know

 

  1. SIGN: Leo
  2. YEAR BORN: 1970
  3. GUILTY PLEASURES: Dark chocolate covered marzipan, reading Vanity Fair & People magazines, sleeping in
  4. INSPIRATIONAL FEMALE ICONS:
    Coco Chanel, Georgia O’Keefe, Katherine Hepburn
  5. HAVE STRUGGLED WITH:
    Weight, acne, depression/anxiety, self-confidence, time-management
  6. WHAT BRINGS ME JOY:
    Slowing down and noticing life’s small simple daily joys, cooking healthy plant-based dishes, functional training sessions at the gym
  7. BEVERAGE OF CHOICE:
    Tie between a strong Cappucino (6oz, double) & a big Cabernet
  8. HOME BASE:
    Santa Fe, NM (“The City Different!”)
  9. HOW TO PRONOUNCE MY FIRST NAME:
    Ma-Nish-Ah (rhymes with Patricia)
  10. DREAM JOB: running MoneyZen Wealth Management