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Ann Oleson | Aspiriant Podcast | Money Tales | Wealth Management
Money Tales

Return on Good, with Ann Oleson


In this episode of Money Tales, our guest is Ann Oleson. Ann embarked on her entrepreneurial journey in 2011. When she started her first business, Ann found herself navigating uncharted territory as a female entrepreneur. She craved role models and networks to guide her along the way. She was specifically looking for women founders of companies generating over a million dollars a year in revenue. Ann got there through creativity and persistence. Today, Ann and her network are breaking barriers and defying expectations.

As a founding partner at Return on Good, Ann is a passionate advocate for using time, talent and treasure to make the world a truly better place. Return on Good, a strategic philanthropy company focused on helping its clients do the most good in the world, centers on her deep experience with her own family’s family office, leading investment and philanthropy, and drives her dedication for her work. Her love rests firmly in the dynamics of the family office, the complexities of organizational structure and design, an alignment for decision-making and the ability to make exceptional opportunities toward a return on good to the world. Ann’s interest in impact investment, philanthropic strategy and her savvy with streamlining it all lead her to start Return on Good with her husband, Jay Kelly. ROG uniquely partners with phenomenal clients to develop engagement strategies for philanthropic investment, working with family offices across the globe. Through impact investing, sustainable investing, Venture Funds and strategic giving, ROG is the ideal connector to bring high-impact family offices into meaningful relationships with deserving nonprofits and innovative organizations.

As a frequent presenter at Family Office events in the U.S. and abroad, she speaks on current trends in philanthropy, impact investment strategy, healthcare and the inner workings of the family office.

Ann’s entrepreneurial journey further strengthens Return on Good; her startup digital marketing agency supported higher education and was named to Inc. 500 and 5000 four years in a row. Within seven years, this thriving business was acquired by private equity investors. Ann then served as Chief Marketing Officer for Ruffalo Noel Levitz, before being named Chief Executive Officer at Via-TRM, which specializes in international education and study abroad software. Under her leadership, the company rebuilt the marketing and sales infrastructure, turned the first profitable quarter ever and exceeded revenue goals.

The ability to take 30+ years of marketing/communications/sales/fundraising and business experience to focus on helping rising social good companies find funds and nonprofits build marketing and fundraising expertise was the dream she has always been looking for. EVERY day is filled with challenge, learning, experience, passion and a chance to make one thing better than it was yesterday.

Return on Good helps: family offices with philanthropic alignment and strategy, social good companies to find impact investors focused on results and good, and non-profits to build marketing and fundraising strategy long term.

Her awards include Women of Influence, 40 under 40, Inc.5000, HER Woman of Achievement, and CBJ Fastest Growing Company’s Award. She has served on boards and committees for Junior League, United Way, Waypoint, ISU College of Business and others.

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