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Dan's Blog

5000 Strong 💪

September 21, 2021

The decision to create a Facebook Group a few years ago worried me. Beyond the myriad of issues around the company, I was concerned that a 403bwise Facebook Group might not be popular. My children, age 17 and 23, told me: nobody uses Facebook anymore. But after hitting the 5,000 member threshold recently, I'm reminded of my favorite Yogi Berra quote: "Nobody comes here anymore, it's too crowded."

5,000 Ain't 3.5 Million

It's estmated that there are about 3.5 million teachers in the U.S. The 403bwise Facebook Group represents 0.0014 percent of that number. Even Mr. Berra — who also said “A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore" and “Cut my pie into four pieces, I don’t think I could eat eight” — wouldn't argue that 5,000 is 3.5 million. But it's significant to the thousands of teachers who have benefited from the shared wisdom. 

Vendor Feedback and AXA Exit

Hands down, the two most popular topics in the group are feedback on vendor lists (financial companies available in various school district 403(b) and 457(b) plans), and how to get out of a bad 403(b), which most often means: How to get out of AXA/Equitable. 

Apologies Not Permitted

Many posts begin with "I am sorry if this is basic" or "I apologize for not knowing...". These are met with a swift: Welcome! You have nothing to apologize for. We are all learning." I am most proud of the welcoming nature of the Group. 

Thank You to Dan Dews and the Many Contributors

My podcast partner Scott Dauenahuer, CFP® and I do our best to participate regularly in the daily Q&A. Many teachers have contributed tremendous amounts of fiancial wisdom to the community. Then there is Dan Dews. A retired Seattle area teacher we interviewed for our pod (Episode 150: Early F.I.R.E.), is simply prolific. The Group wouldn't be what it is without Dan. Big thank you to Dan, and all of the posters and contributors. You are making a dent in the 403bwise goal of fixing the broken 403(b) plan. 

One Last Quote from Mr. Berra

This has nothing to do with the topic of this blog post. I simply like it. “Little League baseball is a very good thing because it keeps the parents off the streets.” 

Stay wise and well (and join the 403bwise Facebook Group).