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About Out Team

Wondering how this curriculum was developed?

  • The first edition of All My Money was released in 1997, and revised in 2001 and 2005.
  • More than 3,000 copies of the original curriculum were sold nationwide.
  • Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE) Outstanding Educational Program Award for All My Money was awarded to the team of K. Chan, L. Crawl-Jackson, V. Fitzsimmons, R. Hardy, A. Lyons, and S. Taylor in 2002.
  • In the spring of 2013, the University of Illinois Extension consumer economics educators looked to revise AMM. They sent out a needs assessment to learn how low-income people manage their finances today, how agencies serve and communicate with their low-income clients, and what those agencies look for in a financial management curriculum and training for staff.


Our Authors


Master of Science, Human Development and Family Resources, Illinois State University

Bachelor of Science, Family and Consumer Sciences-Teacher Education, Illinois State University

  • Pam Atkinson provides leadership in consumer economics programming for youth, individuals and families in a three-county area of central Illinois as well as state-wide programming. She specializes in volunteer-based mentoring programs and is passionate about helping people use credit reports as a tool to achieve financial well-being. At home, Pam tries to control her husband's DVD habit as well as their two cats, who have no interest in being fiscally prudent. Her passion for puns is often seen in her postings on Facebook and the Plan Well Retire Well blog. Pam also provides outreach to diverse audiences through her Twitter account, @WalletWarrior, and her Facebook page, Wallet Warrior.


Certified Financial Planner™ designation, Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards

Master of Science, Family and Consumption Economics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Bachelor of Science, Clothing, Textiles, and Related Art (College of Home Economics) with options in Extension Education and Secondary Education, Virginia Tech

  • Karen Chan served as an Extension Educator in the greater Chicago area for more than 18 years. She was also chair of the All My Money team from its beginning in 1995 until her retirement in 2012. She returned on a part-time basis in 2013 to coordinate the revision of the All My Money: Change for the Better curriculum.


Accredited Financial Counselor® designation, Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education

Master of Science, Personal Financial Planning from Texas Tech University

Bachelor of Science, Human Environmental Sciences with an emphasis in Personal Financial Planning from the University of Missouri

  • Sasha Grabenstetter had been a Consumer Economics Educator for only one week when she was asked to join the All My Money team for its first meeting about the rewrite of this curriculum. At Texas Tech, Sasha worked with Dr. Dottie Durband on Apple Seed: A Student Guide to Pro Bono Financial Planning, with a grant from the Foundation for Financial Planning. When Sasha isn't serving three northern counties of Illinois with personal finance programs, you can find her relaxing with her family and their three financial fat cats. Sasha loves alliteration, writing with black pens and using social media to educate others. You can find her on Twitter @Pennies4Pigs.


Master of Science, Family and Consumer Resources, University of Arizona

California Teaching Credential in Home Economics (K–12), University of California at Davis

Bachelor of Science, Home Economics, University of California at Davis

  • Kathy Sweedler has worked with University of Illinois Extension in a variety of roles starting in 1995, but has always focused on helping empower people to use their financial resources toward their goals. She believes finances matter— both to provide security for her and her family, and to provide opportunities for fun. Kathy loves saving up for trips— whether it's a weekend retreat in the Midwest or around the world to an exotic place! To follow Kathy's successes and tribulations with money, follow her on Twitter @morethancoupons.

Who is Cash Cat?

Cash Cat

While working on All My Money, the authors had a brilliant idea. Money is usually an uncomfortable topic, and they wanted to make it more fun. They were challenged to create a one-minute money tip, and what better combination than cats and money! This was how Financial Fat Cat was born! From the Financial Fat Cat came the idea to use Cash Cat as our mascot and warrior of money. It was a purr-fect idea!