To live life differently, define success in new ways. How? Ask D.A. Wallach.
“I measure success on a daily basis, and it really comes down to how much I’m enjoying every moment that I have,” says Wallach. “The only way that I’ve been able to achieve that consistently is to follow my curiosity wherever it leads me.”
A recording artist, songwriter and investor, Wallach was marked for success as an undergraduate at Harvard, when Kanye West and Pharrell Williams discovered him and jump-started his musical career. As one-half of Chester French, he released three full-length albums, and he’s performed on records with Janelle Monae, Rick Ross, Diddy and others — and 2015 saw his solo debut with the album Time Machine.
With great success comes interesting choices. Wallach invests in cutting-edge startups like SpaceX, Doctor on Demand and Spotify. Forbes included him on its 30 Under 30 list, and Fast Company named him one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business. Last year, he launched Inevitable Ventures, an investment partnership that supports radical entrepreneurs in areas ranging from health care to labor.
Not bad for a 31-year-old — but it took some financial planning. “For me, it’s a necessary evil. It’s a hassle,” laughs Wallach. “But I recognize that I have to devote time to [planning]. Of course, it’s extremely important that people think about their financial security and plan with a long-term view toward retirement or whatever else they want to do. I hope to never retire and to be working on interesting and important stuff as long as I possibly can.”
For Wallach, that means investing in the future — everyone’s future.
“As an investor, I’ve turned my attention to areas that are in need of organization and coordinated effort, be it fixing the health care system and figuring out new ways of addressing diseases that are debilitating millions of people. … I think 30 or 40 years from now, if I’m fortunate enough to live that long, I’d love to look back at what I’ve done and feel I’ve added to some important efforts.”
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This article contains profiles of certain Northwestern Mutual clients, their personal financial needs and how Northwestern Mutual met their needs. The personal financial needs and results of the clients shown may not be representative of the experience of other clients. Also, working with a Northwestern Mutual financial representative or any other financial services provider is not a guarantee as to future investment success.