Today, Aaron DeHoog is the Financial Publisher of Newsmax and Moneynews — an ironic career considering his background.
DeHoog started working at the age of 12, with his father in construction. “I spent summers building commercial hog barns at $3.50 an hour.
I dreaded it at the time; in looking back, it developed a lot of character for me.
My first weekly check was for $127. I’ll never forget seeing how much Uncle Sam took out, and then my mother telling me I had to tithe on top of that!”
It was this hard work with his father that pushed Aaron DeHoog to attend Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich., far away from his home in North Carolina.
“Working construction was a huge motivator for me. Any time I wanted to slack off, I thought about those summer days spent pouring concrete in the hot, humid, stifling heat.”
During college, Aaron DeHoog landed a job at Wedgewood Christian Youth and Family Services, a juvenile delinquent center in Grand Rapids.
“It changed my life,” DeHoog reflects. “I loved working with the kids and it was then that I switched my major to Secondary Education.”
After college, Aaron DeHoog moved to West Palm Beach, Fla., to teach at Lake Worth Christian School.
Although he enjoyed every moment of teaching, he struggled financially to make ends meet. “I was literally living paycheck to paycheck, and it got old, really quick. And I remember a conversation with my father during college. I told him that money wasn’t everything and he responded, ‘Aaron, you are right. Money isn’t everything, but it sure is nice to have!’”
And then, one fateful night in February, everything changed.
A stranger browsing the shelves alongside him at Barnes & Noble handed him the book “Retire Young, Retire Rich” by Robert Kiyosaki.
“It was the last book I would have ever picked off the shelf,” Aaron DeHoog reflects.
“But I felt obligated to read it because this stranger just forced it into my hands. So I read a few random pages, and I remember thinking that it wasn’t too bad. But when I turned around to make a comment to the stranger, he was gone. ”
Aaron DeHoog walked back to the finance section, uncharted territory for him, and found Kiyosaki’s first book, “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.”
In this best-seller, Kiyosaki draws life lessons from the poor dad, a teacher who tried to make ends meet his whole life, and the rich dad, an entrepreneur who achieved wealth creatively.
“I was the poor dad,” Aaron DeHoog recalls, “and my father was actually the perfect example of the rich dad, because he did well for himself in a niche that few bothered to touch.”
By the end of the week, DeHoog had enrolled in the master’s program at Palm Beach Atlantic University.
And a few months later he had purchased a townhouse.
“To this date, it was the best investment I ever made. I received a grant for the down payment, and rented out two of the three rooms to some friends. I was literally living for free.”
One of his classmates talked Aaron DeHoog into joining him at Weiss Research, where DeHoog would serve as a customer service representative to people who subscribed to financial newsletters.
Financial newsletters are publications that are mailed out on a monthly basis. Most range from 8-20 pages long, and typically have guidelines on how one can invest in the stock market.
They tailor to sectors of the market — income, speculative, international, domestic, commodities, currencies, and the like.
“It was a tough switch,” DeHoog reflects. “I was teaching one week, and the next week handling phone calls. Compared to teaching, it was a vocation that was void of fulfillment, but it paid double what I made as a teacher. And it taught me a lot about investing.”
Aaron DeHoog still had a passion working with youth.
“That was the hardest part. I missed that fulfillment. So my wife and I worked with the Youth Group at our church until we had kids of our own.”
Just two years later, in 2005, DeHoog joined Newsmax Media. He still worked in customer service, but his career path had more potential. “At the time, Newsmax was making waves in the political realm. Christopher Ruddy, the CEO and founder, brought me on to help develop the financial newsletters.”
Over the next few years, DeHoog became the key player in growing the division. In 2009, he was promoted to Financial Publisher.
Since then, the newsletter division has blossomed with eight different services: The Franklin Prosperity Report, The Dividend Machine, Gold Stock Adviser, Gold Stock Adviser Pro, The Financial Intelligence Report, The High Income Factor, Ultimate Wealth Report, and Private Opportunities.
“I love what I do. It took my passion for teaching as well as finance, and put it to work in the financial publishing industry. Every day is a challenge as we try to find new ways to teach and guide readers on how to invest in these tough financial markets.”
Aaron DeHoog predicts that the financial publications industry will continue to grow.
“Traditionally, people have relied on their broker to guide their investments. However over the last 15 years it has been proven that most brokers don’t have the client’s best interest at heart. So many people have started investing on their own as online trading has become so easy to do.
“But, with that being said, nobody likes to invest completely alone. And that is where our financial newsletters come into play. We give guidance on investing, and the reader makes the final choice on what to invest in.
And if we don’t perform to your liking, simply cancel it. Our interest is your best interest — to perform. We do that by giving sound guidelines and educating the readers.”
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