The gig: Patricia Whittaker is the founder of AfireFi, a financial platform that’s designed to help you move intentionally through life. Her platform is designed to help you reach financial freedom, and build success in all areas of your life through a proven 7-step roadmap. After spending nearly 20 years on the trading floors of New York, London and Tokyo she launched AfireFi, with the mission of dropping hustle culture and empowering users to build financial success on their own terms.
Getting out of Queens: Whittaker didn’t grow up dreaming of being on the stock market trading floors. She was fascinated by people, wanted to travel, and was drawn to art and fashion. She was rejected from a fashion institute and stalled before she hustled her way through Queens College. She worked odd jobs before she graduated from NYU where she attended school at night after a full day at her first job on Wall street. Trying to earn her way to financial freedom she found that she was missing the things that fulfilled her in life. When she wasn’t on the trading floor, her old habits would eat away at her savings. Despite all of her career and investment success, she had not built foundational healthy financial habits.
Looking for answers: Whittaker took a step back, and added a small amount of discipline and tried and true habits to what she already knew about money and investments - these small actions contributed to clarity to different areas of her life. She noticed that wherever she went, she was being asked questions about finance. Navigating her own personal finances contributes to the creation of what we now know as AfireFi.
A turning point: Navigating the world of personal finance, Whittaker realized that much of what she was contributing to her own finances weren’t included in widely used financial apps. When she was asked about recommendations for apps and platforms to use, Whittaker found it difficult. No platform or app available on the market truly helped users reach financial freedom. She found herself recommending multiple products that ended up costing people a lot of money, and not getting them any closer to their financial goals.
Drawing from life: Working on the stock market trading floor, Whittaker had a unique vantage point to view the news of the world and each story’s impact on humanity. For a few months, she surfed, rafted, filled many journals, before moving to Barbados with her now husband. It was there that she started thinking about her next career move. It ranged from fish farming to ice cream truck, before her then 4-year old erased her entire board of ideas. The clearing of the board brought air and clarity to her next steps. She noticed that most people were amassing the things they desired: careers, businesses, partners, and stuff. Ultimately it came down to one thing, the management of money, she said. Time and money are pillars of our wellbeing, and many of us need an easy and enjoyable way of managing both.
Starting AfireFi: Understanding finance better than most, Whittaker started to create. Her experience in the financial world coupled with her love of writing and art started taking the stuffiness of finance. She jumped through a number of obstacles, challenges and hurdles in trying to align her vision of AfireFi with the technical side of building a platform. “There was nothing like it on the market, we were starting from zero,” she said.
Launching in 2019: AfireFi has evolved quite a bit since she launched it in 2019. Our team has grown since then, and so has our platform, she said. When a user signs up for AfireFi, they gain full access to our financial app that encompasses the full financial ecosystem. Whittaker explains that how we spend our time contributes to our financial goals. The platform allows users to track their expenses and spending, manage their investments, calculate their net worth, track their income and their time, align their goals with their finances, plan for financial freedom and gain access to a library that’s filled with checklists, tips, hacks and resources to help you along your financial journey. Whittaker explains how the app has helped
graduates straight out of university to
parents navigating a divorce and become a single-income household. The platform is designed to grow with you, she explains. It’s an active approach to financial freedom. Along the way you can access 1:1 personalized coaching, and advice correlated to real-time world events. Our members are equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate their finances with clarity and confidence.
The future: “A lot of people navigate their financial journey alone. We experience an enormous amount of guilt, shame and even embarrassment when it comes to our finances. Money is easy, knowing what you need is the hard part,” Whittaker said. AfireFi is created for those who feel scared, overwhelmed or alone on their financial journey. We help you be-friend money, create healthy money habits, gain financial confidence and build financial success with intention, and on your own terms.
Beyond work: Whittaker lives in Barbados with her husband, daughter, and four dogs. In her spare time she likes to travel, surf, hit up art galleries, catch live music, and have a glass of wine with friends. “I’m a second-generation Italian New Yorker, I grew up loving music and going to the record shop,” she said.