The Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER) is dedicated to improving the long-term financial security of all women through education and advocacy.


WISER is a nonprofit organization that works to help women, educators and policymakers understand the important issues surrounding women’s retirement income. As the only organization to focus exclusively on the unique financial challenges that women face, WISER supports women’s opportunities to secure adequate retirement income through research, programs and partnerships. WISER has also been the driving force behind a series of state and local events on long-term financial security aimed at leveling the playing field for women.

As part of our national education campaign, Your Future Paycheck®: What Women Need To Know, WISER has been able to reach thousands of women through workshops held across the nation. WISER also creates a variety of consumer publications including fact sheets, resource guides and newsletters that explain in easy-to-understand language the complex financial issues surrounding Social Security, pay equity, retirement plans and pensions, savings and investments, caregiving, divorce and widowhood, health and long-term care, and financial elder abuse.

WISER was established in 1996 by founder and President, Cindy Hounsell, with a grant from the Heinz Family Philanthropies. Since then, it has received financial support from numerous individual donors, companies, government agencies, and a host of charitable foundations. WISER was also awarded a highly competitive grant from the U.S. Administration on Aging to develop the National Resource Center on Women and Retirement and has operated the Center for more than 20 years. During this time, WISER has become the leading source of financial training and technical assistance by providing model programs and interventions that reach women who have traditionally not had access to this type of financial and retirement education and are most at-risk for poverty in old age.

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