Dr. Mara C. Harvey
Get to know our founder
Founder & CEO of Smartwaytostart.com.
FINANCIAL PARENTING PIONEER.
Author, Keynote Speaker & SDG Advocate.
“My vision is to empower children worldwide to grow up financially literate and understand how our daily money choices impact our world.”
Founder & CEO Smartwaytostart.com. FINANCIAL PARENTING PIONEER. Author, Keynote Speaker &
Hello, I’m Mara.
I never expected to write children’s books. It just suddenly happened.
I was busy writing a book for adults on “WOMEN AND RISK: Rewriting the Rules” to raise awareness for gender pay gaps, wealth gaps, and barriers to female financial participation, when I realised that I wasn’t tackling the root causes: the biased money messages girls grow up with. So I decided to write books for children, to empower girls to feel confident talking about money and to grow up knowing their worth.
I recognised early on that Financial Literacy for children expands well beyond financial confidence for girls. It needs to include the boys as well and tackle all essential money skills that are needed in life: Earning, Saving, Spending, Making Good Money Choices.
I’ve always loved rhymes, so I immediately knew this was the challenge I would take on when writing these books. Rhymes can become experiences that stay with us for life.
Bringing money concepts to children in an easy and enjoyable way has become a great passion. Because money is not just a transmission of value: it’s a transmission of values! Our Money Choices impact our world and there are so many opportunities to engage children in shaping the sustainable future our world needs. So I am keen to continue on this journey and I hope you will all join me!
Fun facts about me
As senior leader in finance with over 21 years’ experience in Wealth Management at UBS, I have had the privilege to work with Billionaire families across Europe and guide them in having more impact with their wealth. Alongside my role as regional market head for Ultra High Net Worth clients and Family Offices, I designed, launched and implemented a ground-breaking global transformation program to enable women’s financial participation and access to capital, building an award winning team and catalyzing well over 500m USD of capital into investments supporting gender equality.
My work led me to publish the book “Women and Risk: Re-writing the Rules” (2018) and I was awarded the Financial Justice Champion award by Bridge Berlin the same year. Advocacy for female financial empowerment and for financial parenting has become my greatest passion.
To overcome the biased money semantics that are the root cause of many economic gender imbalances we see today, I created “A Smart Way To Start” (2018-2020), a rhymed book series for children on money, equality and sustainability. My vision is to shape our children’s financial future, and to empower all girls to talk about money, to know their worth and to feel comfortable negotiating their pay, so they can enter the workforce on equal terms to the boys. The fifth book of the series explains in rhymes the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and has just been endorsed and published by the United Nations under the title START DOING GOOD.
My vision is to empower children worldwide to grow up financially literate and understand how our daily money choices impact our world.
I hold a doctorate with highest honors in Political Economy from Fribourg University and a degree in economic policy and econometrics. I am quadrilingual and am a frequent speaker at international conferences, offering insights and solutions to advance economic gender equality.
Connect with Mara
Stories we tell to our children
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ARTICLES & BLOGS
Get in touch if you would like to book mara for speaking engagement, 1-on-1 mentoring or if you have a question.