Financial Planner / 30
At 25, Shannon Lee Simmons quit a lucrative investment manager gig to launch the Barter Babes Project. For a year, she traded her financial expertise for everything from yoga classes to circus lessons; afterwards, she opened her own financial planning practice, Toronto’s The New School of Finance. Many of her clients are millennial women, drawn to her creative approach to cash management. Case in point: her recently launched #RealSelfies campaign, which tackles the materialistic aspect of Instagram. Her kickoff post shows two near-identical photos. The first, a shot of Simmons with a crêpe, is labelled “Fab meal”; in the second shot—captioned “This shiz costs money”—she’s holding the bill. This get-real-ness extends to her 21-day spending detox, in which clients avoid social media and unsubscribe from e-tail newsletters. Her approach is working: in response to national demand, she’s now creating online programs.