A passion for life and a willingness to work hard were early traits for Ron Groenke, the youngest son of the late Anna and Robert Groenke, who lived on a farm outside of New Germany, Minnesota. Up early and busy with farm chores seven days a week instilled strong character and personal values.
His ninth grade algebra teacher told him, “Learn all you can about computers, it’s the wave of the future.”
That advice set him on a path, obtaining a degree in mathematics with distinction from the University of Minnesota, and specializing in data communications and software engineering.
That background enabled Groenke to work at General Mills as a computer programmer, and then at Sperry Univac, where he worked on communications software for NASA for the tracking of Apollo spacecraft. In 1968 Groenke took a risk and joined a start-up data communications company, Comten, in St. Paul, where he worked for 25 years, eventually becoming vice president of development and engineering.
It was on a business trip in 1986, that a colleague introduced Groenke to options trading.
“A colleague and I were on a plane going to a meeting, and I noticed how busy he was with the Wall Street Journal and his calculator. I asked what he was up to, and then it was revealed to me. He was looking at the premiums he could get by selling calls on his NCR stock. The next day, I investigated what was required to sell these calls, and found out how easy it was.”
“A covered call is an option you sell which allows someone to buy your stock at a predetermined price until some future time. You get a premium up-front when you sell the call and have the cash immediately available,” Groenke said.
In 1981, Comten was purchased by NCR, and in 1991, by AT&T. AT&T wanted to change the direction of the communications group, and basically dismantled Comten. In 1993, as part of the front end executive team, Groenke was offered a retirement and severance package at the age of 49. He researched the opportunities available and took the investment Series 62 and Series 7 exams in preparation to becoming a broker. His wife suggested that he could do it alone and need not work for anyone anymore. He took the early out package and started option trading, with less stress than that of corporate life, and hasn’t looked back since.
Options trading allowed Groenke to retire to Marco Island in southwest Florida, where he and his wife moved in 1998.
After moving to Marco Island, Groenke joined a rotary club, where he gave a short “classification talk” on his background. The program chairman asked him to be the formal speaker at an upcoming Rotary meeting. After this presentation, Wade Keller owner of Keller Publishing, LLC, approached Groenke about writing a book on the material he had covered.
Keller and Groenke worked together and co-authored “The Money Tree: Risk Free Options Trading,” which was published in 2002 and was very successful. That book was followed in 2004 with “Covered Calls and Naked Puts”, and in 2006 with "Cash for Life". Now his latest book, “Show Me the Money” is just hitting bookstores worldwide.
In addition to his books, Ron realized the need for a strong software program to facilitate an investors use of his highly successful investment strategy. His proprietary software programs have continued to improve with suggestions from users. The current version of VISIONS is available on an annual license fee for about 40 cents a day. With this powerful program investors can search the entire stock market for just those special stocks that fit their criteria for investing, selling calls and selling puts. A special feature of VISIONS is called Scout. This dynamic program uses the concepts in “Show Me the Money” to find the top ten stocks RIGHT NOW! A free 21-day trial allows any investor to prove for him or herself the profitability of using Ron’s software programs. No credit card or payment is needed for the 21-day free trial.
Ron’s books have been done in a novel format with one character, a retired professor named Rob Graham, teaching a former student how to write covered calls, naked puts, and perform good stock option selections. The story takes place on Marco Island in southwest Florida where Ron lives with his wife, Jean, also a character in the book.
“Stock market reading is dry material, and I wanted people to have some fun reading, but also to learn about performing stock and option selections in a more easily understood manner,” Groenke said. Groenke has received e-mails and comments from numerous readers saying they have enjoyed reading the books. A real life finance professor – Frederick P. Scheduler, PhD., Associate Professor of finance, East Carolina University – made the following comment: Show Me the Money is a book I can comfortably recommend to my friends who are average investors. They will understand the material and will discover a relatively low-risk way of making money in the stock market, and may even find that they have made some new imaginary friends through the characters used in telling the options story.
Ron says he wrote the books because he thought it would be fun, and he wanted to allow average investors to take advantage of something that could improve their investment returns and well being. He continues to give talks to civic and investment clubs throughout the country as well as on financial talk radio such as the nationally broadcast “Money Matters”. He has been featured on NBC and CBS TV, as well as hosting a Fort Myers/Naples local news segment on investing. His one and two day seminars are in great demand.
In his spare time, Ron and Jean enjoy traveling to visit their three children and four grandchildren.
The Naples Daily News, Marco Island Sun Times, Marco Island Eagle, Sarasota Herald Tribune, Waconia Patriot, and Norwood Times have written articles about him and his financial experience and knowledge.
He has been the recipient of the NCR Laureate Award in recognition of major product development contributions and excellence in engineering.
Groenke would like to be known as a person who helps average investors earn income on their portfolios.
Through his books and other media coverage, he’s trying to educate people on how to do something with their stock that will generate a very nice financial return.
“I try to teach people to go for the singles and doubles in investing, instead of the homeruns,” Groenke said. “It’s the singles and doubles that win ball games. My gratification is knowing that I have helped someone out there advance their financial well being.”
FOR MEDIA INTERVIEWS CALL RON AT 888-GROENKE (476-3653).