Texas Tech University

The Evensky/Katz Era: Personal Financial Planning’s Evensky and Katz Retire

Harold Evensky and Deena Katz

Harold Evensky, CFP and Deena Katz, CFP Retire from Texas Tech's Personal Financial Planning ProgramWith years of counseling their clients on planning for retirement, Texas Tech University's Personal Financial Planning faculty members Harold Evensky, CFP® and wife Deena Katz, CFP® are now beginning their own next phase of life. The couple's influence on the financial planning industry and the minds of students in the College of Human Sciences will be remembered for years to come.

Department Chairperson Vickie Hampton, Ph.D., CFP® says that having Deena and Harold on their Personal Financial Planning faculty helped raise the status of the PFP program in the eyes of practicing professionals, academics, alumni, and students.

"Deena and Harold gave generously of their time and efforts to not only teach students, but they are committed to educating the next generation of financial planning professionals," Dr. Hampton said. "Each is a rock star in their respective areas of expertise and together they are a dynamic duo."

When students and faculty walk into their financial planning classrooms in the Charles Schwab Personal Financial Planning Technology Complex, Dr. Hampton says they are quickly reminded of Deena's connections with Schwab, that led to support from the Charles Schwab Foundation to provide such a valuable facility for students.

"We will fill the positions they left, but we will not be able to replace them," Dr. Hampton said.

Professor Emeritus William "Bill" Gustafson, Ph.D., recalls that when Harold and Deena arrived at Texas Tech, other financial planners saw that as an endorsement for the PFP program by two of the very best in the business.

"They've supported the program as practitioners since the early '90s," Dr. Gustafson said. "Having either one of two giants in the field of financial planning come to Tech would have been a leap forward for our program's recognition but to have both come and impact the lives of so many of our students was a true blessing and an absolute home run for our program and department."

Dr. Gustafson expressed that he can't thank the two enough for their support and longtime friendship.

"I always told the students, 'If you were walking around with Harold and Deena at a national meeting and saw all the attention they (and you) received, you'd swear you were walking with Mick Jagger and Lady Gaga.' They'll always be Techsans in my book."

Current students in the PFP program who have seen and felt the impact of Harold and Deena describe the faculty members as instructors who provided practical experiences and life lessons to guide the classroom facilitation.

"I felt extremely blessed to have them as instructors for what would turn out to be their last semester," PFP student Tiffany Murray said. "With them, it was more than just reading some material, it was how does this information translate to the real world? It was such a privilege to have both of them guide us and I'm so thankful to have had the opportunity to learn from them."

Jacob Gurock recalls that from a student perspective, both Harold and Deena were some of the kindest and humble people he has learned from at Texas Tech.

"Harold and Deena could have devoted all of their time to their firm, but instead decided to educate a generation of financial planners that would serve their clients' best interests," Jacob said. "What they have done for Texas Tech, the greater Lubbock community, and the field of financial planning is beyond words. Speaking on behalf of the students in the Department of Personal Financial Planning, thank you for teaching us how to lead by serving."

For PFP student Emily Boyer, the Client Communication course taught by Deena Katz was one of the favorite classes she has taken thus far.

"Professor Katz was a gifted communicator who illustrated how to take our PFP knowledge and make it collide with real-world application," Emily said. "Ultimately, she demonstrated the soft skills and delivery aspect of financial planning, giving techniques to establish rapport with clients. It was a great privilege to have known her, as she gave students the tools to flourish competently, interpersonally, and genuinely."

Another student in the PFP program, Mason Clark, echoes the comments of his classmates in that the team's style of teaching was extremely applicable to the real-world execution.

"Professor Katz had so much knowledge and experience to share with her students, which she did so generously," Mason said. "Her wisdom and teachings have made an everlasting impact on my future career."

We thank Harold Evensky and Deena Katz for the lasting impact you have left in the hearts of students in the College of Human Sciences as well as the legacy you have created for both current and future financial planners to continuously strive towards.