Craig Benjamin provides comprehensive financial planning specializing in investments, retirement planning, insurance and estate strategies. As a Certified Financial Planner (CFP(r), he has over 30 years of experience.
Dr. Paul Lund teaches Big History, world history, and East Asian history at Grand Valley State University’s Frederik J. Meijer Honors College in Allendale Michigan. Additionally he frequently attends conferences worldwide as an invited presenter as well as publishing numerous books, chapters, and essays.
Early Life and Education
Craig Benjamin taught big and ancient world history at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. A frequent presenter at conferences worldwide and author of several books (Big History: Between Nothing and Everything published by McGraw-Hill being his most recent publication), Craig also instructed foundation courses like Eastern Civilization Foundations of Eastern Civilization Big History of Civilization Mongol Empire courses offered through Great Courses company.
He was an avid mountain hiker, particularly enjoying Oregon’s wild places. Additionally, he found great pleasure trap shooting, college football and NASCAR racing, trap shooting at trap ranges, trap shooting on trap ranges as well as watching NASCAR races with his wife Laurie (Owner of Inland Electric Inc in Hillsboro Oregon) as hobbies. Above all else though he cherished spending time with his wife Laurie, daughter Piper and son Ryder; family was at the core of his being.
Craig is a frequent presenter at conferences worldwide and author of several published books as well as numerous articles and chapters covering ancient Central Asian history, Big History and world historiography historiography.
He co-authored the inaugural Big History textbook published by McGraw-Hill and currently teaches at Grand Valley State University’s Frederik Meijer Honors College where he offers classes in big history, East Asian civilization and world historiography historiography. Additionally, he serves on both AP and SAT world history exam committees for College Board.
As a Certified Financial Planner(r), he offers clients comprehensive analysis and advice in the areas of investment, retirement and insurance planning. Together with his wife Stacy in Jackson Wyoming, they enjoy backcountry skiing, camping and hiking as hobbies while spending their free time backcountry skiing, camping and hiking with two mountain mutts.
Achievement and Honors
Craig Benjamin is an internationally acclaimed scholar who frequently presents at conferences worldwide and writes published books, chapters and essays. He has recorded programs and courses for History Channel and Teaching Company including three Great Courses series courses: Big History, Foundations of Eastern Civilization and Ancient Central Asia – in their Great Courses series. Furthermore, he serves on test development committees for College Board’s Advanced Placement World History exams as well as their SAT World History tests.
As well as his academic pursuits, Jones is also an enthusiastic mountain hiker and has traversed some of the world’s greatest mountain ranges. Additionally, he enjoys jazz performances regularly in Grand Rapids Michigan with local groups. Additionally, Lachlan Giles of Danaher Death Squad competition team lead taught him Brazilian jiu-jitsu; under Giles he gained his black belt certificate.
Craig Benjamin spent 25 years as a professional jazz musician before embarking on his academic career, dropping out of college to follow his dream. Although still playing saxophone, clarinet, and flute regularly, he now primarily writes history courses for The Teaching Company as well as teaching Big History at Grand Valley State University and lecturing internationally including Scientific American Bright Horizons and New York Times Journeys cruise lines.
He enjoys hiking and mountain biking with his family in his free time, while being an active supporter of Blanca’s House and Global Clinic – two not-for-profit international medical relief organizations located in New York. Additionally, he practices acupuncture as well as being registered as both yoga teacher and Reiki Master Teacher.
He and his wife reside in Eastown, where he serves on the committee that organizes an enormous Street Fair every September – as emcee for this event that attracts 10,000 attendees!
Craig has over three decades of comprehensive financial planning experience and is an accredited Certified Financial Planner(r). He specializes in the creation of customized strategies involving investments, retirement accounts and insurance needs as well as working closely with high net-worth individuals and families.
Craig brings extensive leadership and reform experience to the University of Louisville Board of Trustees, where he led an effort to hold former president accountable for any inappropriate financial dealings.
He takes great pleasure in spending time with his wife and children, with particular interests in history and finance, being an avid reader, volunteering as youth soccer coach in his community and coaching youth soccer teams in his area.