Michael Thomas, Jr.

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Michael G. Thomas Jr., Ph.D., is an Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC®) and a lecturer at the University of Georgia. His research focuses on financial empathy, data visualization’s effects on financial behavior, and the connection between brain function and money. Dr. Thomas’ philosophy on how to effectively interact with money can be summed up in his Ted Talk: Financial Empathy: Understanding the Story Beneath the Numbers


Utilizing financial empathy as a process for active listening and the creation of client-focused financial recommendations are reflected in two financial literacy and capability programs he helped co-create: Money Dawgs and Discovering Money Solutions. 


Dr. Thomas’ life-long goal is to help underserved communities establish, grow, and sustain their wealth utilizing an intra and inter-family wealth creation process.


Speaking Topics:


Financial Professional-focused Presentations

  • Financial Empathy: Understanding the Story Beneath the Numbers

  • Diversity and Inclusion: Empathy or Sympathy?

  • Maybe It’s the System

  • Understanding the Impact of Data Visualization on Client Behavior

Client & Employee-focused Presentations

  • Financial Socialization

  • Self-Compassion and Financial Well-being

  • Employing Financial Empathy within a Relationship

  • Social Capital and Collegiate Success

  • Access Does Not Equal Success: Investing in the 21st Century

Michael Thomas, Jr.'s Experiences

Virtual In-Person
Virtual In-Person

Payment Terms


"Michael was the moderator of a panel "Whole-Person Finance: How Emotions, Trauma, and Empathy Can Impact Financial Wellness." He actively listened to the panel members and lifted their dignity as he drew upon their vulnerabilities to get to the heart of the topic."

Eric Landblom, Owner of Leadership Development

"Michael tackles complex topics with courage, grace, and compassion, bringing people together across our differences to understand the deeper meaning of our work for greater impact and connection."

Rebecca Wiggins, Organizational Wellness Consulting