John M Jennings
John M. Jennings
John M. Jennings is president and chief strategist of St. Louis Trust & Family Office, a $15 billion wealth management firm. As an author and speaker, he is a leading voice in the space of wealth management and leadership. His book, The Uncertainty Solution, is an engaging dive into investing philosophy and best practices as well as an authoritative, accessible guide for anyone who feels inundated with financial news and data.
“A must-have addition to anyone’s reading list,” says Charles R. Schwab.
Jennings is also the author of the highly acclaimed IFOD blog, is an adjunct professor at Washington University’s Olin Business School, and frequently writes on wealth management topics for Forbes. He has finance and law degrees from the University of Missouri and a professional certificate in Decision Making and Behavioral Finance from Harvard.
John’s Professional Involvement
- President and Chief Strategist, St. Louis Trust & Family Office
- Adjunct Professor, Washington University’s Olin School of Business (Wealth and Asset Management graduate program)
- Logos School Board of Directors
- Greater St. Louis, Inc. Leadership Board
- Chair of the Board of Trustees for The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra Endowment Trust ($250 million endowment)
photo by Barbi Macon
“As humans, we’ve evolved to make decisions emotionally and subconsciously, yet we think we make rational decisions. I am passionate about helping people realize this and finding a way to have better behavior and make better decisions.”
Welcome to My World
photos by Audrey Jennings
Hi there, I’m John.
You’ve probably already read my professional bio, so, here’s a little more of the nuts and bolts and the personal stuff—the casual me.
Professionally, I am the president and chief strategist of St. Louis Trust & Family Office, a $15 billion wealth management firm. We focus on helping families with great wealth. It may seem that being extremely rich would be all puppies and butterflies, but it can be burdensome because with wealth comes complexity. Plus, wealth can harm family relationships.
Our firm helps families manage their complex affairs, including their investments, trusts, taxes, estate plans, cash flows, and charitable giving, among other things. We also open lines of communication about money among family members in a healthy way.
What I do at my firm is broad-ranging. I lead client service. I am involved in acquiring new clients. I network. I publish articles and speak. I lead presentations for client families. I get brought in by client teams to strategize about various situations ranging from investments to tax planning, to estate planning, to charitable giving. I handle client issues when there are problems. Along with other members of our management team, I set the strategic direction for our firm, and protect and grow our culture. I mentor and educate our employees. I make tough decisions and have tough conversations. I’m also a cheerleader for our people and our clients.
What I do is fun and energizing. I am constantly learning. I feel a deep sense of purpose from helping our people grow and learn and from helping our client families have peace of mind about their wealth.
Creatively, I’m a writer, but more importantly, I’m a seeker of knowledge. You might say I’m curious. I’m all about big ideas that shift your worldview and how you think about things. I love learning about new and unexpected things, making correlations and drawing conclusions, and then sharing what I’ve learned.
I believe that if we think better, we can live better. This is why many of the lessons in my book go beyond investing and really hit on how to think better about the world we live in (our dislike of uncertainty, issues with causation, power laws, understanding exponential change, etc.).
I read a lot. I listen a lot. I ask a lot of questions. On this website, you’ll find a variety of topics ranging from investment advice (and I have a lot of that) to obscure things like: What is cute aggression? How often do we lie? And, what is the loudest noise ever recorded? You might be asking, “what do these have to do with each other?” Good question. The simple answer is that these things interest me (and they might interest you too).
Personally, I’m a Gen Xer of median height. I’m happily married with two daughters and a four-legged best friend. I’m an avid reader, a BIG fan of coffee, a vegan, a skier, a lover of indie music, and a ravenous St. Louis Blues fan. I like to challenge myself physically and mentally and I love to laugh. I’d like to think I’m funny, but you’ll have to ask my wife about that one.
If you have a question for me or a topic that you’d like me to cover in my blog, reach out and let me know (handy form below). I look forward to hearing from you.
Get in Touch
Want to book John at your next event? Or, do you have a question for him, a topic you'd like him to explore on his IFOD blog, or just want to say hey? Reach out here, he responds to all inquiries (although it might take some time—he gets a lot of fan mail).