Three Decades, Three Influences to Owning My Financial Future

Greg Robleto
3 min readApr 24, 2023


When it comes to your finances, who are your influences?
My answer would depend upon when you are asking.

I wish I could say my first financial advisor, but I found him shady and didn’t stay with him long. But, his hard-press tactics did open my eyes to how much I didn’t know about finances and investing.

So, I started learning on my own. Over three decades, my priorities have shifted, and so too have my influences, but I owe a lot to these people:

The 2000s — David and Tom Gardner

2000s — Tom and David Gardner from the jester cap-wearing days of the early 2000s

Before I worked at The Motley Fool, I was reading the books: You Have More Thank You Think and Rule Breakers, Rule Makers were two inspirations to get me started in the world of investing at a young age where I could appreciate the power of compounding.

The 2010s — Dave Ramsey

2010s — Dave Ramsey’s “baby steps” helped me get my household’s finances in order

With the ushering in of the 2010s, I became a father and provider and realized I needed to get my house in better order. The reinforcement of the Baby Steps on his podcast and reading The Total Money Makeover were key to getting personal finances squared away.

The 2020s — Morgan Housel

2020s — Through this rough market decade, I’m turning to Morgan Housel’s focus on the investing mindest

Morgan and I, at one point, were colleagues at the Fool. Even before working in the same office, I regularly read his column and attended his conference talks. Through the turbulent market we’ve had so far this decade, Morgan’s writings on behavioral science in The Psychology of Money meet my current need to focus on the investing mindset. I look forward to his new book, Same as Ever, coming soon.

Many others get honorable mentions, including:

and more still, I am sure I have forgotten. So many people have inspired me at the right moments in my financial and investing journey.

Who is missing from this list?
Who are the inspirations that have helped you?

Disclaimers: This post is based on my experience and personal opinion and though it’s pretty flattering to my employer, The Motley Fool, it does not reflect the thoughts or opinions of my employer, The Motley Fool.

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Greg Robleto

Creative leader at the intersection of design, product, and tech. Writing mostly about design, CSS, product strategy, leadership, investing, and more.