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Hey, How'd You Become The Go-To Gal For Personal Finance, Jean Chatzky?

The SmartMoney alum talks getting her gig on Today and money-making tips for journos

By Kristen Fischer - January 11, 2011

If you flip to the Today show on most days, you'll see a familiar face. Jean Chatzky is the expert on everything personal finance, dispensing practical information about how people can get out of financial ruts and mishaps. But when Chatzky first graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and took a position at Working Woman magazine, her goal was never to write about personal finance; instead she was interested in business.

"That's where I learned about companies. I found that very interesting," she recalls. "And what I really wanted to do more than anything…was go be a fact-checker at Forbes."

After a detour on Wall Street as a business research analyst at Dean Witter Reynolds, Chatzky eventually landed at her dream publication and later joined SmartMoney, where she parlayed her money know-how into regular gigs on Today and SiriusXM's Oprah & Friends show. But what makes her so well-received is that she previously struggled with her own personal finances. Now, the author and financial whiz opens up about how she created her empire using multiple media channels -- and how you can, too.

 

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