Cause: Financial education
Supplementing her 27 years in the banking industry with volunteer work as a financial literacy teacher, Slezak has taught all ages, from kindergarteners to senior citizens. Teenagers are the most rewarding, she says, because she can give them a head start. This year, Slezak started a scam prevention class with senior citizens as her biggest audience. In addition to teaching 20 classes a year, Slezak, a community relations manager at GE Capital Retail Finance, has recruited and trained other employees to contribute thousands of volunteer hours teaching money skills too. Slezak is also writing a follow-up to her 2013 children’s book Money Talks, with one about credit.
A third-grader sent me a letter at the end of year. He wanted to thank me for teaching him to save, because he’d saved enough to buy an Xbox game. That was really cool. I felt like I’d inspired him.”