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Military Saves Month 2021 Digital Toolkit

Written by Alan Germani · 31 January 2021

Military Saves Month is a widely recognized national campaign where hundreds of organizations join together to collectively encourage the military community to focus on their individual financial wellness. Over the course of a month we cover money-related topics from a relatable, down-to-earth, positive perspective. Savers end the month with tools, resources, and clarity on their current financial situation, new savings goals, and a realistic plan to achieve them.

Military Saves Month logo

The Military Saves Pledge is the central tool that allows Savers to set a goal and make a plan to achieve better financial stability.

Each week of Military Saves Month has its own theme: Save Automatically, Save for the Unexpected, Save to Retire, Save by Reducing Debt, and Save as a Family.

Who can participate?

Military Saves Month participating organizations represent a diverse and impressive coalition of nonprofits, educational institutions, military services, employers, influencers, government agencies, and financial institutions. This outstanding collective serves our community of Military Savers who include service members, military families, veterans, and civilian employees of the Department of Defense. If you’d like to join us for Military Saves Month 2021 as a participating organization, click here. 

We’re signed up, now what?

Once you’re officially signed up, it’s time to plan how your organization will show up for the month! This digital toolkit will provide done-for-you social media graphics, resources and tools, sample emails, press releases, and more. Many participating organizations choose to create their own aligned content for the month, host events (both virtually and on-location), and more.

The biggest priority will be having a strategy to reach as many people in your community as possible during the month to maximize impact.

You’ll receive ongoing support and direct communications from the Military Saves Team leading up to and throughout the month!


Social Media Teasers

Build excitement in the weeks leading up to Military Saves Month by sharing these ready-made social media posts with your audience.


Done-for-You Social Media Content

We've made things easy by creating copy and graphics that you can share on your social media channels. Be sure to tag us when you share!


Weekly Themes

Week 1: Launch/Saving Automatically

Hashtags of the week: #SaveAutomatically, #MSM2021

The easiest way to save? Automatically! It doesn’t matter how much or what you’re saving for, when you make the smart decision to have a portion of your income automatically deposited into a savings account, you have increased your chance for success. On this kickoff week--and during the entire month--the focus is on motivating service members, military families, and veterans to take action by saving automatically through split deposit.

As a participating organization in Military Saves Month 2021, make this week successful by:

  1. Initiating conversations on social media around the topic of “Saving Automatically.” You can do this by sharing the done-for-you social media content provided in the Military Saves Month Toolkit, or creating your own branded content. Don’t forget to use the hashtags of the week! #SaveAutomatically, #MSM2021
  2. Encouraging your community toward financial action by taking the Military Saves Pledge or re-pledging. Then asking them to set up automatic transfers through their employer or financial institution to achieve their savings goal.

Week 1: Save Automatically


Week 2: Save for the Unexpected 

Hashtags of the week: #Save4TheUnexpected, #EmergencySavings, #MSM2021

The past year has taught us that we have to be as prepared as possible for the unexpected. While we all have future savings goals, having a rainy day fund to support emergency needs, like a car repair, dental bill, or even a last-minute flight home should be a top priority. This week, we’ll focus on motivating service members, military families, and veterans to prioritize building an emergency savings fund.

As a participating organization in Military Saves Month 2021, make this week successful by:

  1. Initiating conversations on social media around the topic of “Saving for the Unexpected” and building an emergency fund. You can do this by sharing the done-for-you social media content provided in the Military Saves Month Toolkit, or creating your own branded content. Don’t forget to use the hashtags of the week! #Save4TheUnexpected, #EmergencySavings, #MSM2021
  2. Encouraging your community towards financial action by taking the Military Saves Pledge or re-pledging.
  3. Share the Military Saves Spending and Savings tool to aid your military community in getting a clear view of their finances so they can realistically budget for their emergency savings fund.

Week 2: Save for the Unexpected


Week 3: Save to Retire

Hashtags of the week: #Save2Retire, #MSM2021

It’s never too soon to prepare for retirement. In fact, the earlier you start to prepare the easier it is to save. Because we know that very few service members, military families, and veterans have a plan for retirement savings that will actually cover their desired lifestyle, during this week we’ll focus on the importance of setting aside time to understand your retirement needs and making a plan to meet them.

As a participating organization in Military Saves Month 2021, make this week successful by:

  1. Initiating conversations on social media around the topic of “Saving to Retire.” You can do this by sharing the done-for-you social media content provided in the Military Saves Month Toolkit, or creating your own branded content. Don’t forget to use the hashtags of the week!  #Save2Retire, #MSM2021
  2. Encouraging your community towards financial action by taking the Military Saves Pledge or re-pledging.
  3. Share Military Saves Month resources to aid your military community members in creating their individual retirement action plan.

Week 3: Save to Retire


Week 4: Save by Reducing Debt 

Hashtags of the week: #ReduceDebt, #PayingDownDebtIsSaving, #MSM2021

It’s time that we recognize that by paying down their debt, service members, military families, and veterans ARE saving! Actively reducing your debt means you’re saving on interest, avoiding late fees, and maintaining or increasing your credit score. This week, we’ll focus on why paying down debt should be acknowledged and celebrated as a form of saving and a component of your financial plan. We’ll also share tips, tools, and resources that will aid your community members in successfully reducing their debt.

As a participating organization in Military Saves Month 2021, make the week successful by:

  1. Initiating conversations on social media around the topic of “Saving by Reducing Debt.” You can do this by sharing the done-for-you social media content provided in the Military Saves Month Toolkit, or creating your own branded content. Don’t forget to use the hashtags of the week! #ReduceDebt, #PayingDownDebtIsSaving, #MSM2021
  2. Encouraging your community towards financial action by taking the Military Saves Pledge or re-pledging. 
  3. Share the opportunity to connect your community with a free financial coach or counselor through Military Saves’ partnership with the Yellow Ribbon Network and AFCPE®.

Week 4: Save by Reducing Debt


Week 5: Save as a Family 

Hashtags of the week: #SaveAsAFamily, #MSM2021

How much better would our military community be with money if we empowered not only our service members and veterans to save, but also our military spouses? What if we, as military families, had a plan and developed our strategy together? What if we were intentional about teaching good money and savings habits to our military kids from a young age? This week, we’ll focus on the tangible and intangible ways we can set ourselves up for success as military families, and positively influence and model for our children and teens when it comes to money, spending habits, and saving.

As a participating organization in Military Saves Month 2021, make this week successful by:

  1. Initiating conversations on social media around the topic of “Saving as a Family.” You can do this by sharing the done-for-you social media content provided in the Military Saves Month Toolkit, or creating your own branded content. Don’t forget to use the hashtags of the week! #SaveAsAFamily, #MSM2021
  2. Encouraging your community towards financial action by taking the Military Saves Pledge or re-pledging. 
  3. Join our “Save as Family Chat” to meet our partners with the America Saves for Young Workers National Youth Advisory Council and hear from our panel about ways to instill positive savings behaviors at a young age.

Week 5: Save as a Family


Military Saves Month Events

  • Events TBA

Sample Email and Newsletter Content

This document contains sample content for you to share with your community during Military Saves Month via email or newsletter. Feel free to use it as shown, or adapt it for your organization’s specific needs, including appropriate Military Saves Month graphics and videos from this toolkit.


Text to Pledge/QR Code

Text MILITARYSAVES to 877877

Military Saves is now offering Savers the ability to make a commitment to saving via SMS text. Not only is this a quick and simple way to take the Military Saves Pledge, it also takes the burden off of installation financial readiness personnel and other partners who previously collected paper pledge forms and had to enter them manually. 

Features of the Text to Pledge

  • The Pledge consists of a sequence of call-and-response SMS messages between Military Saves and the Saver. No internet connection or data necessary.

  • Data collected mimics the paper form found online.

  • After taking the Pledge via SMS, Savers will begin receiving saving reminders, tips, tools, and resources from Military Saves via email and text message.

  • Installations/partners can customize the messaging their Savers receive. 

  • Military Saves will create custom graphics (see example below) for organizations to use to promote Text to Pledge.

Things to remember:

  • Message and data rates may apply.

  • Savers will receive up to 4 texts a month.

  • All Savers must complete the full text-to-pledge sequence to be added to the Saver database.

  • Installations/local campaigns will be asked to create a unique keyword to identify their Savers who take the Pledge.

Do you want to request a keyword for your installation? Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

NEW! Military Saves QR Code

Another convenient option is to include our QR code, which takes Savers directly to our Military Saves Pledge page. We offer customizable QR codes, which can give your organization credit for signups. To request your QR code, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

We're signed up, are you? Download QR Code

Flyer w/Image Download Image Flyer w/Image 2up Download Image Simple Flyer Download Image Simple Flyer 2up Download Image


Resources & Links

Sample Documents


Pledge Forms


Military Saves Month Branding Guidelines


Download All PDFs

Contains branding guidelines and weekly theme graphics.


Download All Logos

Contains Military Saves and Military Saves Month logos.


Banking Account Checklist


Participating Organization Badge

Proud Participant Badge Download Image


Other Flyers & Graphics

Take the Pledge

I'm Saving For Sign Download Image

The True Cost of Debt Download Image

Save $500,000 by the Age 65 Download Image

Don't leave free money on the table. Download Image


#MSM2021 Participation Challenge

Friends don’t let friends miss out on participating in Military Saves Month!

As a participating organization in #MSM2021, we want you to spread the word to your peer organizations and invite them to participate in Military Saves Month.

Simply post the following (or a variation) on Twitter or Linkedin!

We're signed up, are you? Download Image

Sample Post

We’re proud to be participants of @MilitarySaves Month 2021, encouraging the military community to #save effectively! We challenge:

  • (organization)
  • (organization)
  • (organization)

to do the same! #MSM2021Challenge 


Sign Up for Military Saves Month

  • Get the Military Saves 2021 participation badge to share on your website and in materials
  • Be recognized on the participating organizations list
  • Get helpful emails from Military Saves Month staff to help you plan successful activities

January 2021: Tax Time Savings Resource Packet

Written by Alan Germani · 25 January 2021

Is it really that time of year again? Filling out IRS forms is not necessarily enjoyable, but many military families eagerly anticipate tax season because they see it as a time when they get a windfall bonus in the form of a tax refund. It’s also a time when many Americans fall prey to tax-related scams. 

At Military Saves, we believe that it’s essential to go into tax season understanding possible credits and deductions, but also with a plan for a potential refund. A tax refund is a great way to kickstart an emergency fund or to pay off debt. 

We’ve gathered resources, tips, and social media posts to help make tax filing easier and less stressful.


Social Media Posts

Social media handles/pages


Post 1

Know how to spot a scam during #tax season. The team at @MilitarySaves has hot tips for you about the IRS.

5 Things the IRS Will Never Do Download Social Image


Post 2

Many military families receive a large #tax return each year. Which areas of your life will you fund? @MilitarySaves highlights five ideas for you.

5 Ideas for Your Tax Refund Download Social Image


Post 3

Free tax preparation is an easy way to save lots of cash this #tax season. Here are resources from the team at @MilitarySaves, and be sure to check out their blog post for more details: https://militarysaves.org/blog/1727-three-free-we-promise-ways-to-file-your-taxes

5 Free Tax Filing Resources for Military Download Social Image


Post 4

You’re expecting money, now what? Here’s a simple breakdown plan in percentages for your #tax return from @MilitarySaves.

The 30-40-30 Plan Download Social Image


Social Media Conversation Starters*

Direct Engagement Posts, Questions, and Topics our partners can ask their audience to drive conversations around our monthly theme.

Partners will be encouraged to tag us in the comments and ask for our thoughts to contribute to the conversation.

  1. What was the best thing you’ve done with your tax refund?
  2. If you had one tip for a new service member/military family about how to use their tax refund, what would it be?
  3. Have you ever had your taxes prepared for free? What tool would you recommend?
  4. What’s something new you can do with your tax refund this year?

Resources


New Blog Posts


Videos

  • TBD, stay tuned!

Events

  • TBD, stay tuned!

From the Archives

Past blog posts/resources from MS/AS

Our Team

Written by Angela Caban · 31 August 2020

 

Angela Caban, MHRM

Angela Caban, MHRM
Director

Angela Caban is an Army National Guard spouse, mom of two, and the Military Saves Director. She is responsible for directing and overseeing communications that effectively describe and promote the program and its services.

Prior to joining Military Saves, Angela was a Community Manager for USAA, where she was responsible for the strategic planning of the digital-based platform open to 11 million members.

In 2010, Angela founded a military support network to help bridge the gap between the active duty, National Guard, and Reserve communities. The Homefront United Network was named a top military support network by Joining Forces in 2014. Angela has been published in various print and online publications, with a writing focus on military lifestyles and financial readiness for everyday military families.

She is the former Vice President of the New Jersey Board of Education, where she was an avid advocate for military kids attending civilian schools as well as current issues affecting curriculum and regionalization of smaller school districts. She has also served on various advisory boards such as the Military Family Advisory Network and the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.

Angela has her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from DeVry University and her Masters in Human Resource Management from Keller Graduate School of Management.

Angela's Favorite Saving Tip: Have more than one savings account and name them based on what you are saving for. Example, "Vacation Money", "Emergency Fund", "New Appliances"... naming them to the specific goal you are saving for will make you think twice about dipping into savings if it isn't an emergency.

 

Lila Quintiliani, AFC®

Lila Quintiliani, AFC®
Senior Program Manager

Lila Quintiliani is an Active Duty Army spouse, veteran, mom of two, and the Military Saves Senior Program Manager. Previously she worked as a Personal Financial Counselor on military installations worldwide and as a contracted subject matter expert for content for the Department of Defense’s Office of Financial Readiness. Lila also served as the Assistant Coordinator for the Military Saves program in 2012-2013.

A FINRA Military Spouse Fellowship recipient, Lila is an Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC®). She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in East Asian Studies from Columbia University in New York City and a Master’s Degree in Chinese History from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Lila feels strongly about helping military families find financial success.

Lila's Favorite Saving Tip: When you pay off a monthly note, like a car loan, continue to save that amount in a savings account. Watch those savings grow!

 

Jackie Toops

Jackie Toops
Program Coordinator

Jackie Toops was an Army wife for 7.5 years, and is a freelance writer, content creator, media personality and the Military Saves Program Coordinator. 

Jackie has been published in print and online across numerous outlets to include Army Wife 101, NextGen Milspouse, Veterans Rideshare Inc., SoFluential Media, Wall Street International Magazine, Families Go Travel, and more.  

Jackie has overseen public relations, communications, and social media for museums, galleries, universities, and military spouse- and veteran-owned businesses. She proudly served on the board of the AUSV Veterans Awards, was the emcee of Vet Fest, and has been interviewed on various military-related podcasts. Highlights of Jackie’s career include being a volunteer radio co-host with the Armed Forces Network (AFN Wiesbaden), participating in a panel with Facebook’s VP of Marketing during a Boost with Facebook event, and meeting actor Chris Hemsworth at a Warner Bros. Pictures press junket.  

Jackie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Humanities from Florida State University, a Graduate Museum Studies Certificate from the University of Cincinnati, and a Master of Nonprofit Management from the University of Central Florida. 

In her free time, Jackie enjoys international travel, coffee, music, and spending time with her two sons.   

Jackie’s Favorite Savings Tip: Keep your eyes on the prize. When saving, consider the big picture and don't allow impulse purchases to detract from your larger goals. Focus on what you really want instead of what you want now. 

Military Saves Advisory Board

Written by Benjamin Moss · 24 November 2020

Military Saves is proud to present the inaugural 2021-2023 Advisory Board. This dynamic group is comprised of a diverse set of partners from many different organizations that support the military community. Each member of the advisory board brings a unique input and strategic insight to the table, so that the Military Saves program can evolve and grow as we continue to support our military families on their journey to build wealth and reduce debt.

Our advisory board members serve a two-year term and meet monthly via video conferencing, and once a year in-person at our Washington, DC office.


Brian Alvarado - Deputy Director of Workforce Development, Hiring our Heroes

Brian L. Alvarado is a military community advocate by day, and a military spouse, gadget geek, and amateur kitchen genius by night. He is the Deputy Director of Workforce Development on the Military Spouse Team at Hiring our Heroes, a program of the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation. This initiative is dedicated to measurably impacting military spouse unemployment and underemployment through the overarching strategies of grassroots engagement and public/private partnerships. In this role, Brian directs a team of dedicated professionals across several programs and initiatives that drive the attainability of economic stability through employment opportunities for the military community.  As a military spouse, Brian has served as Naval Command Ombudsman at Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center aboard Naval Base Point Loma as well as various Family Readiness Group board positions in support of the sailors and families of commands his service member spouse has served with. He currently serves as an Advisory Board Member of the Military Family Advisory Network. He is the 2018 Armed Forces Insurance United States Navy Spouse of the Year®️ and has been recognized by the American Military Partner Association with their National Community Service Award as well as the recipient of the 2016 Vanguard Equality Award from Equality California. 

He and his spouse, Matthew Alvarado, US Navy (Ret.), reside in Washington, D.C.

>> Hiring Our Heroes

Shay Cook - Financial Readiness Manager, FINRA Investor Education Foundation

Mrs. Shay Cook is the Financial Readiness Manager at FINRA Investor Education Foundation. Shay has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in psychology and found her way into the financial services field while working for a federal credit union. In May 2007, she was accepted into the FINRA Foundation’s Military Spouse Fellowship program and completed it in July 2008. Since then she has used her Accredited Financial Counselor®️ (AFC®️) certification to promote financial readiness at Walter Reed’s Army Community Service, Coast Guard Headquarters, and now through her organization, Crusaders for Change, LLC. She obtained the Financial Fitness Coach®️ (FFC®️) certification in Nov 2019.
 
Shay lives near Ft. Meade, Maryland with her retired Air Force husband and English bulldog. They also have a daughter who attends the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC).

>> FINRA Foundation

Jennifer Davis - Government Relations Deputy Director, National Military Family Association

Jennifer Davis became a Government Relations Deputy Director at the National Military Family Association in 2018. She is responsible for programs relating to spouse employment and education, financial literacy, and food insecurity. These areas touch on elements such as state licensure, consumer education, and advocating for the protection and enhancements of legislation and policy affecting these issues. She also serves as co-chair to both Personnel Committee and Taxes and Social Security Committee of the Military Coalition (TMC). Prior to joining the Association, Jennifer served in various roles at the Air Force Sergeants Association (AFSA) including as Director of Military and Government Relations. She earned a bachelor of science in interior design from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh as well as a diploma in resident planning. Before going back to school and working in advocacy, Jennifer served in the United States Air Force as an imagery analyst at the U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM), Offutt AFB, Nebraska. Over the last 19 years as a service member and spouse, Jennifer has lived in Texas, Nebraska, Hawaii, Florida and Virginia.

She currently resides in Springfield, Virginia with her son while her husband, MSgt Steven Davis, USAF, serves at the U.S. Embassy in Oslo, Norway.

>> National Military Family Association

Andia Dinesen, AFC®️ - Executive Vice President of Communications and Operations, Association of Military Banks of America

Andia Dinesen is the Executive Vice President for Communications and Operations for the Association of Military Banks of America (AMBA), a not for profit association of banks operating on military installations, banks not located on military installations but serving military customers, and military banking facilities designated by the U. S. Treasury.
Andia is charged with assisting the President/CEO of AMBA in all aspects of communications and operations with a focus on providing support to AMBA members and associate members by creating and maintaining a public awareness campaign extending knowledge of AMBA and its members to the military community. She is also charged with sustaining a close working relationship with the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense Personnel and Readiness, the Banking Liaison Officers of each service branch to include the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, National Guard, and Reserve offices, American Bankers Association, Independent Community Bankers of America, Military Officers Association of America, Military Spouse Employment Partnership, National Military Family Association, Consumer Federation of America, and other partners in the Department of Defense (DoD) Financial Readiness Campaigns. In 2010 she received a Lifetime Achievement Volunteer Excellence Award in recognition of her work. Andia is certified as an Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC®️). She completed a FINRA Investor Education Foundation Military Spouse Fellowship and was credentialed by the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE). In 2000 she graduated from Northern Arizona University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. Andia is currently enrolled in the Personal Financial Planning Master’s Program at Kansas State University and will graduate in July 2021.


Andia has relocated with her family to nine installations since 2000 to include two overseas assignments. She now resides in the Washington D.C. area with her husband, Ian, and their two daughters.

>> Association of Military Banks of America

Tom Kastner - Financial Wellness Vice President, Wounded Warrior Project

Tom Kastner serves Wounded Warrior Project®️ (WWP) as financial wellness vice president. In this position, Tom provides strategic vision, operational oversight, and leadership to the program areas of Warriors to Work, Veterans Benefits, the Resource Center (Call Center), Alumni Registration, and the Emergency Financial Assistance program. Before joining WWP, Tom worked at the senior manager level for Mercedes Benz, USA and Amazon, LLC. In addition, he served as a senior administrator and academic dean at two different private military boarding schools. A graduate of the United States Military Academy, Tom retired from active duty after a 30-year career as an infantry officer and operations research analyst. 
 
Tom earned a Ph.D. in industrial engineering and MS in statistics from Georgia Tech, a MS in applied mathematics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and a MA in national strategic studies from the Naval War College. 
 
Tom and his wife, Pam, have been married for 31 years. They have two adult children who both served as commissioned officers until leaving the military in 2017 and 2018, respectively. 
 
Tom and Pam enjoy the beach, playing cribbage, reading, and are grateful to have been rescued by their amazing dogs, Boots and Pi.

>> Wounded Warrior Project

Aaron Levy - Acting Director, Individual and Community Preparedness Division, FEMA

Aaron Levy is the Acting Director of FEMA’s Individual and Community Preparedness Division (ICPD) where he leads the Agency’s efforts to help people prepare for disasters (Objective 1.3 in FEMA’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan). Aaron oversees programs that partner at all levels of government, the private sector, and community organizations to increase citizen and community preparedness and encourage the development of disaster resilience across the Nation. Prior to joining ICPD, Aaron served as the Executive Officer (XO) of FEMA’s National Preparedness Directorate (NPD). As XO, Aaron served as the de-facto chief operating officer of a business line consisting of 400 full-time employees, across three geographical locations with an annual budget of $400 million. He provided counsel to NPD’s Assistant and Deputy Assistant Administrators on the directorate's strategic, budgetary and operational priorities while managing the staff of the Office of the Assistant Administrator.


Aaron graduated from Richmond, The American International University in London with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and subsequently received his Master of Arts in Global Security Studies from Johns Hopkins University. Aaron also completed the Executive Leaders Program at the Naval Post Graduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security. A native of New Jersey and lifelong New York Giants fan, Aaron resides in Washington, D.C. with his wife Katie and their amazing daughter Carolyn.

>> FEMA

Jerry Quinn - Chief Operating Officer and Secretary, AAFMAA

LTC Jerry Quinn (USAR) serves as Chief Operating Officer and Secretary at AAFMAA, overseeing all operations of life insurance, including new business, policy services, member benefits, and survivor assistance services. Jerry brings more than 25 years of experience in the financial services industry where he specialized in strategic programs and business development, and has over 34 years in the US Army, including continued service in the US Army Reserve. He has served in various command and staff assignments, including deployments in support of OIF, Desert Storm and Panama, and homeland defense missions in the United States. He currently serves as the Commander of the 316th Quartermaster Battalion in Oklahoma.

Jerry holds a B.S. in Finance from Colorado State University and an M.B.A with an emphasis in Organizational Design from the University of Colorado.

>> AAFMAA

Shannon Razsadin - President and Executive Director, Military Family Advisory Network

Shannon Razsadin is the executive director of the Military Family Advisory Network (MFAN), an active-duty Navy spouse, and mom of two toddlers. MFAN was founded in 2013 to fill a persisting gap in the military community: the inability to quickly and effectively understand the modern military family and connect military families to the resources they need to thrive. Under Shannon’s leadership, MFAN has become a premier, respected nonprofit leader in a crowded and sometimes confusing network of military and veteran service organizations. Shannon was selected through a competitive process to serve as one of three civilian advisors to the Secretary of Defense on the Military Family Readiness Council and is regularly called on by national and local media to weigh in on military-related topics, including CBS, CNN, and FOX.


Shannon’s leadership, authenticity, fresh approach, and focus on collaboration have enabled her to earn the trust of military families and leaders within the public and private sector who seek advisement on the evolving needs of the modern military family. Shannon, her husband, and their children live in Newport, Rhode Island... for now. Home is where the Navy sends you.

>> Military Family Advisory Network

Bianca Strzalkowski - Managing Editor, AmeriForce Media

Bianca Strzalkowski is the managing editor of AmeriForce Media, publisher of Military Families and Reserve & National Guard magazines. In partnership with Military Influencer Conference, the company launched a new quarterly magazine focused on entrepreneurship, social impact, and careers for veterans and military spouses. She is experienced in news reporting, editing, and public relations. Her portfolio includes interviews with former Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis, then-UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Shark Tank CEO Daymond John, and countless elected and military leaders. She uses storytelling to connect audiences with the lesser-told stories of the military community. Prior to her current position, Bianca was deputy director for Blue Star Families, where she worked as a liaison with the Obama Administration on career licensing efforts for military spouses. In 2011, Bianca was named Military Spouse of the Year and received a Certificate of Commendation from the 35th Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. James Amos. Her husband recently retired from the Marines and her daughter-in-law currently serves in the Air Force at Ramstein Air Force Base, Germany.


Bianca holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and journalism. She resides near Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, where she serves as the public affairs officer for Maryland ESGR and is a member of the Military Reporters & Editors Association.

>> AmeriForce Media

Andi Wrenn - PFC Provider Network Manager, Zeiders Enterprises, Inc

Andi Wrenn, AFC®️ has had a passion for helping people make sound financial decisions for two decades. She is on the AFCPE®️ Board of Directors and is the Provider Network Manager for over 700 financial professionals working with military families at Zeiders Enterprises in the Personal Financial Counselor (PFC) Program. She has been a manager with the PFC program since 2008.

>> Zeiders

 

*Disclosure: Military Saves does not endorse any products or services.*

Partner Resource Packet: Saving For An Emergency

Written by · 23 August 2020

Although you can’t know when an emergency will arise, one thing you can count on is that they WILL happen. Often when you least expect it. That’s why Military Saves wants our Savers to be prepared by saving for the unexpected.

This month’s resource packet is filled with valuable information and helpful tools to aid your audience in everything from budgeting, to “finding” the money, and stats that reinforce why saving for emergencies is so critically important, especially to military families.

Share this information with your audience so they can set a goal and make a plan to be prepared for life’s unexpected moments.


Social Media Posts:

5 Ways Military Families Can Save $500 to $1,000 for Emergencies via @MilitarySaves

----------------------------------------------- 

57% of respondents in the 2019 @MilitarySaves Saver Survey said unexpected expenses were their top challenge when it came to saving.

Download

-----------------------------------------------

Those with a #savings plan are much more likely to have adequate emergency savings. Set a goal and make your plan by taking the @MilitarySaves Pledge. http://bit.ly/pledgems

Download

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Savings Tip from @MilitarySaves: Automatically transferring money from checking to #savings is the fastest way to #save $500 to $1,000 for #emergencies https://bit.ly/2QYKZjt

Download


Resources:

America Saves/Military Saves Resources/Tools

COVID-19 Resources

Save for Emergencies 

This is the Emergency You’ve Been Saving For

Tips on Where to Keep Your Emergency Savings

Steps for Dealing with an Unexpected Loss of Income

Combat Changes in Your Paycheck with Battle-Hardened Transition and Emergency Funds

Emergency Savings

Five Ways to Start and Maintain an Emergency Fund


Partner Organization Resources & Highlights

FEMA - Military Family Preparedness

FEMA - Emergency Financial First Aid Kit

Red Cross - Military Family Resources

Department of Defense - Emergency Preparedness Guide

Military OneSource - Military Relief Organizations and Emergency Financial Help

Department of Defense Office of Financial Readiness - COVID19 Resources


New Blog Posts:

 How Military Families Can Save $500 to $1,000 for Emergencies


Events:

Military Saves Quarterly Program Update - Q3

When: September 22, 1 p.m. EDT

Where: Online via Microsoft Teams

-----------------------------------------------

America Saves #ThinkLikeASaver Virtual Town Hall Series, co-hosted by Military Saves

All Virtual Events will take place on the America Saves Facebook Page at 2pm ET

October 22, 2020 | #ThinkLikeASaver: Simple Strategies To Help You Save

November 5, 2020 | #ThinkLikeASaver: How Do I Pay Off Debt?

November 19th 2020 | #ThinkLikeASaver: Saving For Major Life Milestones

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Guest Blogger | February 11, 2014

    #Save just 1% of your income this year and grow $250-$500 in savings by the end of the year depending on your salary: http://ow.ly/tvMwQ

Saver Stories View all »

How Smart Financial Decisions Can Create Opportunities 

Written by Stephen Ross, America Saves Program Coordinator | November 22, 2019

Of the many stories Military Saves shares, most describe how someone was in dire straits financially and worked their way out of it with the help of Military Saves. This time we want to highlight a different kind of story. This is a story about how responsible financial decisions can build on one another to create opportunities you thought only the super-rich enjoy.

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Setting a Goal Leads to Success

Written by Super User | May 24, 2019

Growing up, Marisa’s dad had always talked about saving first, but she said she didn’t really internalize it until much later. “I was drifting along with no plan, carrying a little bit of revolving debt, saving some money here and there, but without a real plan for it.”

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Building a Six-Figure Savings While Enjoying Life

Written by Jackie Toops | November 13, 2020

Does the idea of saving up hundreds of thousands of dollars seem impossible? How about doing it while still living an enjoyable lifestyle?

For military spouse Martina and her husband, an E-5 in the Navy, accumulating a six-figure savings has become a reality. One might think that in order to save this much, it would take a great deal of sacrificing and forgoing a certain quality of life, but Martina and her husband would disagree. “Over the past few years (about five), we've managed to save almost $120,000 while mostly living on one income. We've learned so much about easy ways to save money and live a good life,” shares Martina.

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