Through the years, Dr. Dave Yeske, CFP® has succeeded in this mission through national TV appearances, leadership of professional organizations, and writer. The Financial Planning Association® (FPA) has recognized him as one of the profession’s leading minds by awarding him their highest honor—The P. Kemp Fain Jr. Award (2017). He continues to spread the gospel of his field as Director of the GGU’s Financial Planning programs and Distinguished Adjunct Professor.
Helping Realize Dreams
During his career at the Paul Revere Insurance Group (now part of Unum), it was Yeske’s job to call on insurance brokers, stock brokers, and financial planners, representing his company’s portfolio of products. He recalls: “I gravitated to the Certified Financial Planner® (CFP) professionals who were using the financial and economic tools I’d learned in school, but in the interest of helping individuals and families achieve their dreams and goals for their lives. The financial planners worked with their clients over time, guiding them and being part of the process as clients realized their visions for the future.
My mission is to be a financial planning evangelist. I want to share the power of financial planning to transform lives for the better, and hold my professional community to the highest standards of conduct while they practice this power with and for their clients.
Inspired by these interactions, Yeske enrolled in a CFP education program and went on to open his own financial planning office. In 2010, Dr. Yeske earned a doctorate in finance from GGU. The investment strategy he pioneered—The Yeske Buie Approach—has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal.
Dr. Yeske endeavors to, “help foster the emergence of professionals who can practice at the highest level of competence. This means not only technical competence, but also the ability to understand their clients deeply, to develop strategies that are demonstrably connected to who their clients are as human beings, and to possess and use the skills necessary to be effective change agents in their clients’ lives.”
Teaching and Research at GGU
Overseeing the Master of Science in Financial Planning (for those entering the profession and preparing for the CFP® exam) and the Master of Science in Advanced Financial Planning (for practicing CFPs looking to advance to the next level), Dr. Yeske endeavors to “help foster the emergence of professionals who can practice at the highest level of competence. This means not only technical competence, but also the ability to understand their clients deeply, to develop strategies that are demonstrably connected to who their clients are as human beings, and to possess and use the skills necessary to be effective change agents in their clients’ lives. These include advanced communication skills, coaching and facilitation skills, and the ability to think strategically. This focus permeates all of our classes and programs.”
Moving the Profession Forward
One of Yeske’s two primary areas of focus is to educate financial planners to be better versed in research-based writing and to have the skills to incorporate the results of financial planning research. Yeske contributed to this body of knowledge by co-authoring Evidence-Based Financial Planning: To Learn . . . Like a CFP with fellow GGU professor Elissa Buie, and by creating a GGU course called Evaluating Research: Understanding and Using Applied Research in Your Practice.
Yeske’s second main area of focus has been incorporating more science into the practice of financial planning by fostering closer ties between the worlds of practice and academia. “Academics understand how to conduct formal research, while financial planners, working on the front lines with their clients, know the critical questions that need to be answered,” he says. In his roles as Chair of FPA’s Research Center Team and Academic Advisory Council, Dr. Yeske says he “strove to build the connections that I knew would be so necessary to expand our body of knowledge in an evidence-based direction. It’s an essential partnership.”