By: Duane Blankenship | Category: Other | Issue: July 2013
Melanie The Money Maven on Waterstone’s lobby floor creatively tiled with 100,000 pennies.
No doubt you’ve read articles by The Money Maven in Value News and wondered just who she was and where she got all that knowledge and experience. The Money Maven provides straight-forward, practical advice on money matters. She is down-to-earth, hard-working, fun-loving and extremely creative.
The Money Maven is also known as Melanie Hasty-Grant, Managing Principal/Founding Partner of Waterstone Private Wealth Management in Owasso, and Tulsa, Oklahoma. Melanie is a frequent contributor to CNBC’s PowerLunch, Fox Business and Channel 8’s Good Day Tulsa. She works hard and plays hard. “Life is short, so get out there,” she says. “It’s not just about saving and working for retirement day. It’s also about finding what’s important to you and living it today.”
Melanie grew up on a farm near Stuttgart, Arkansas, where her dad was a farmer and her mother a business owner. From her earliest days, she learned the value of hard work and perseverance, lessons that still serve her well. “I learned practical lessons about the cycle of life, planting seeds, nurturing growth, and harvesting,” says Melanie. “These are the lessons I still apply to my investment strategies.”
As a child, Melanie spent time with her grandparents who farmed during the Great Depression. “My grandmother taught me to be thrifty,” she said. Melanie studied psychology at SMU and met Ken, her husband, her man and her business partner at Waterstone. After graduating with a Masters Degree in Counseling from Oklahoma State University, Melanie practiced as a counselor and marriage and family therapist. Always loving helping others, she later focused on money and investing. “It was always one of the top issues about which therapy clients worried and struggled,” she added.
Melanie re-trained and was licensed to trade securities and provide financial planning which she has done for 14 years. Eleven years of counseling and marital therapy experience gave her an undying compassion for people and a keen understanding of clients’ feelings and their needs involving money and its emotional and relational reach.
Recently Melanie shared an idea with a friend. She bought 100,000 pennies…$1,000 worth.
The pennies were laid in wall-to-wall rows across Waterstone’s reception area and when sunlight hits them they glow brightly. Just for fun, Melanie cast a handful of coins across the front sidewalk and cemented them with epoxy. She smiled when asked if anyone ever attempts to pick them up.
Each time Melanie sees her beautiful penny floor she is reminded of these time-tested sayings: Pinching pennies; a penny saved is a penny earned; pennies from heaven; and “See a penny, pick it up and all day long you’ll have good luck.” Each of Melanie’s clients is given a “lucky penny” and told, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
Waterstone serves clients who have worked hard, nourished 401k’s most of their lives and come to Melanie with significant wealth. She serves business owners, physicians, and engineers. But Melanie and Waterstone also serve folks from every walk of life. Most have significant wealth, but many are what Melanie calls “millionaires in training.”
“I will teach you to be rich,” says Melanie. “It all begins with pinching pennies and getting out of debt. Then setting goals and working diligently to make it happen.” Melanie makes “cents” out of investing. “Take the bull by the horns,” she says, “invest in yourself and trust me.”
“Life is Good,” is printed on the tire cover of Melanie’s orange jeep (She’s a huge OSU fan). She loves God, family, friends…and clients. Give Melanie, The Money Maven, a call and set up a visit. It’s free.
Blankenship graduated from the University of Oklahoma and has enjoyed a lifetime career in advertising. He started his own advertising business in 1993 and enjoys creating graphic art and writing. Hobbies include hunting, fishing and pencil drawings. Duane and his wife, Janice, have been married over 50 years and are active in their church and community. He has been a contributing writer for Value News/Values Magazine since 2005.