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More than one million women in North America become widows each year. This profound change ushers in a new relationship with their advisor and changes their financial planning needs. While they are a large group, their needs and preferences are unlike any other demographic. Learning to adapt to their situation and preferences is a skill that is beneficial for any financial advisor.
Valerie Neff Hogan is a relationship manager in the NCF Chicago office and the executive director at Orchard Ministry Development, where she assists donors with non-cash and legacy gifts. Valerie and her mother, Miriam Neff, founder of Widow Connection, host “Starting Over Financially,” a nationwide show on Christian radio stations where they help widows to avoid fraud and apply valuable budgeting and financial management skills. She is a licensed attorney, registered patent attorney, and CFP®. Valerie and her husband, Mark, are the parents of three sons and are involved in foster parenting and adoption.
Miriam Neff is the founder and president of Widow Connection and is the author of 11 books. She speaks nationally and internationally on widows' issues and navigating unwanted life change. She has more than 20 years' professional counseling experience and is a mother, grandmother, and the widow of Robert Neff. She and her daughter, Valerie Hogan, speak to widows on finances and generosity.