Rebecca Herbst

Founder @ Yield & Spread
316 karmaJoined Working (15+ years)Ogden, UT, USA



Passionate about effective giving and financial literacy. Early retiree (a la the FIRE movement). Member of Giving What We Can. Board Member for Effective Altruism Salt Lake City.  Ex-commercial real estate cities researcher and economist. Outdoor enthusiast. Creator of  Yield & Spread. We teach working adults how to manage and invest their money. All profits after operating costs go tot effective charities. Learn more at


Having a baby and becoming a parent has had an incredible impact on me. Now more than ever, I feel more connected and concerned about the wellbeing of others. I feel as though my heart has literally grown. I wanted to share this as I expect there are many others who are questioning whether to have children -- perhaps due to concerns about it limiting their positive impact, among many others. But I'm just here to say it's been beautiful, and amazing, and I look forward to the day I get to talk with my son about giving back in a meaningful way.  

One of the misconceptions I had about the GWWC pledge has to do with the use of a donor-advised fund (DAF). It was always my thought that the pledge was designed to help people give meaningful sums of money sooner rather than later (e.g. donate 10% per year vs. just waiting till you die to make a large lump sum donation). I've now met a few people that have taken the pledge but have contributed most or all of their charitable giving to a Donor-Advised Fund as part of their pledge. And furthermore, they have yet to make any grants from their DAFs as they believe in the the prospect of Investing to Give. I haven't quite fully formed my personal opinion of this yet, but I wonder how GWWC views these scenarios? Contributing to a DAF, of course, is a commitment in that those contributions are irrevocable and must ultimately go to charity. But with that said, in the unlikely scenario all pledge takers were contributing money to a DAF and not granting any funds in the near future, then this to me feels counterintuitive to the pledge itself. Any thoughts?

Great to read this. Did you evaluate The Life You Can Save org as part of this process? Can you share any feedback if so?

Thank you to all those who RSVP'ed to the second part of our Finance for Good Series. Expect the workshop to be interactive, with some exercises and discussions as a group. We're providing an optional pre-event exercise called When Can I Retire?. It’s meant to help you get a better understanding of your financial snapshot -- both your net worth and your spending, and give you the opportunity to use your real financial data during the workshop. If you aren’t able to get to it, no worries, you can always explore during and after the event. See you all soon!




Excited to see this as an offering!

Wanted to share with readers of this post that Yield & Spread has added a free 1:1 coaching program for do-gooders who want to explore and improve their personal finances. We are calling for applicants in this post. If you found the FI-lanthropy calculator helpful, please consider applying. 

There's been some good activity in the Personal Finance space since this post from @NicoleJaneway ! Wanted to share with readers of this post that we have created a free 1:1 coaching program for do-gooders who want to explore and improve personal finances. We are calling for applicants in this post.

Thanks. I've gotten this feedback more than once so will address it!

I found this incredibly helpful. Along these lines, I've been searching for existing Earn to Give coaches. I know you can join the GWWC and One For the World communities and attend their events. The Life You Can Save also has a feature where you can reach out to an advisor.  But i'm more so curious to know if this is a formal coaching program for making a pledge, similar to what 80,000 hours has with their career coaching program.

I believe there is a world in which you can pursue both FIRE and regular donations starting today.  Assuming you are financially secure and actively working towards FI, I believe that one can take a pledge today, and still donate their estate upon their old age or death. And that these two acts of giving are not mutually exclusive. Per @Davidmanheim comment "it's hard to stay involved in EA without actually doing the things EA suggests".  I agree that building this uphill habit up today is important so that it grounds you to give your nest egg tomorrow. I'm deeply interested in this space, and recently created this "Fi-lanthropy Calculator" per this EA Post. It allows people to explore their options of giving today vs. tomorrow in line with their timeline to FI. 

Else, on the whole, I agree and think all EAs (and most people) should make FI a priority in order to assure their security and comfort in old age. (I genuinely don't like the term RE as much because it involves negative connotations). 

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