Episode 3: Women, Wealth and Social Change

ESG Investing With Haleh Modasser

In this episode of Financial Finesse, I interview expert guest Haleh Modasser, Sr. Vice President at Stearns Financial in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Haleh is the author of Women on Top: Women, Wealth & Social Change, which makes a case for women to leverage their wealth to propel the changes we want to see in the world while also benefiting financially. Beyond charitable giving, volunteering, and political activism, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing is an increasingly popular way for women to make an impact by aligning our investment dollars with the causes we value. 

More than ever, I hear women asking, “What can I do to help?” in the wake of a global pandemic and growing social unrest, and this episode tackles that question head-on. Haleh and I discuss how values-based investing can be a faster and more impactful way to effect change and why it’s so important for women of the Baby Boomer generation, who control the majority of the nation’s wealth, to be aware of these types of investment opportunities. 

During our conversation, we touch on both the principles and mechanics of ESG investing, and why interest in these strategies has skyrocketed since the pandemic began. Whether you’re a financial advisor who wants to educate your clients on these opportunities or a woman who wants to use your wealth to support the issues you care about, I encourage you to listen to this episode. 

Finally, if you’re a client of Curtis Financial Planning or want to work with an advisor to learn more about how to incorporate ESG principles into your investment portfolio, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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5 Unique Things to Buy To Help Ease Your Anxiety 

Photo Credit: Roberto Nickson on Unsplash

I have gotten a special thrill out of being a curator of delightful, beautiful or delicious things and sharing them with my friends.

With the pandemic crisis, I think we can all use more simple pleasures to lift our spirits and ease our anxiety. 

In the act of treating ourselves or others, we can support independent businesses in their time of need. I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.


Coin 1804 Protective Masks in Camo Or Python Prints – these masks made by fashion brand COIN 1804 in Los Angeles are not medical grade masks. But they will do in a pinch when you are out for a walk or running errands. They are comfortable, easy to take off and on, fully cover your nose and mouth, and are cute! Check out COIN 1804’s wide and surprisingly affordable men and women’s casual, chic clothing while you are on the site.


I regret all the years I didn’t know how wonderful it is to sleep on a silk pillowcase! Articles touted how they prevent wrinkles and bed hair, but what I love is how good they feel on your skin. Cool and smooth and luxurious. It’s important to buy 100% mulberry silk for the best experience. I purchased mine from Fishers Finery 
and Brooklinen  and I’ll be checking back for sales often. I know I’ll never use a cotton pillowcase again.


For a perfect well-priced gift or a treat for yourself, go no further than Heath Ceramics and their bud vase – $26.00. It’s simple, clean lines and lovely colors are always pleasing to the eye alone or with a few buds tucked inside. As if that wasn’t good enough, Heath produces it in seasonal colors, so you have a reason to go back for more. If you buy the vase as a gift, you can include a Heath designed letterpress card for $5.00.


Being at home gives me the urge to organize and find new, esthetically pleasing ways to store things. One of my favorite storage vehicles is from Design Within Reach. It’s the Restore Basket designed by Mika Tolvanen for Muuto. It comes in 3 different sizes and is constructed of polymer felt made from recycled PET bottles. The basket holds its shape, is easy to carry, and doesn’t scratch surfaces. I use them in my office and at home. Currently, some of the colors are on sale, and they do add new colors from time to time.


A friend of mine recently sent me a “COVID-Care package,” and inside was a vial of St. Jane Luxury Beauty Serum for the face. It’s the most fantastic face oil formulated with all Vegan ingredients, including sunflower and grape seed oil combine with 500mg CBD to help nourish and calm the skin. I have sensitive skin, and my face loves it. 

If you try these products, I hope you like them as much as I do.

And, I’m sure these independent businesses will appreciate your orders during this time of need. 

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