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Alexa von Tobel earned a degree in psychology from Harvard College. When she realized she was about to graduate from college and she hadn’t taken one course in personal finance, she launched LearnVest. She was about to start a job as a trader for Morgan Stanley, but she had no idea about credit scores, Roth IRAs or mortgages. Von Tobel tried to learn about personal finance on her own using the Internet, but she soon realized that there were no resources that targeted young women.

Von Tobel enrolled in Harvard Business School in 2008, but she took a leave of absence shortly thereafter when LearnVest was named an Astia company for 2008-2009. The company raised $1.1 million in seed funding and was named a TechCrunch50 Company in 2009. Led by Accel Partners, LearnVest has raised more than $25 million in funding to date.

The company’s goal is to help anyone learn how to manage their finances and make smart financial decisions. Their Web site offers easy to use interactive tools that anyone can use to improve their finances. The site offers checklists and allows users to create profiles and save their information. The company also offers e-mail bootcamps on a wide range of financial topics that help people get a jump on their finances. Bootcamp topics include tax help, how to reduce costs, getting out of debt and budgeting for a baby. LearnVest has helped more than a million women take control of their finances, get out of debt and start planning for the future.

Von Tobel is also a cofounder of Lwala, a 501c3 non-profit organization whose goal is to fight HIV and AIDS inAfrica. Although the main goal of Lwala is to improve the health of the people of Africa, the organization also improves infrastructure and public health programs, which lead to increased attendance in schools and promotes economic growth.


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