Daughter moves back to area to join her mother’s business

ALDEN — A 34-year-old Albert Lea woman is taking her experiences from other endeavors and bringing them to her mother’s business in rural Alden.

Sarah Hensley, a 1997 Alden-Conger High School graduate, grew up in Alden and moved back to the area with her husband, Brian, in September from Peoria, Ill.

The husband and wife joined the staff of Donna Nelson Insurance Inc. to help Nelson transition into retirement in the future.

“It’s a great opportunity to come back,” Hensley said. “It’s a great area, and we liked the opportunity to be close to family.”

Before joining the company, Hensley was a commodity broker but also worked for a family-owned business that had crop insurance.

“I was around it but saw it from a different point of view,” she said.

The insurance company offers farm, crop, home and auto insurance.

Thus far, Hensley said, she has been largely involved in the marketing for the company, updating its website and representing the company at community events. At the same time she is familiarizing herself with all of their clients and other parts of the business.

Hensley said she enjoys helping people, educating people and protecting them from risks through insurance.

“Knowing that we’re here if they come into trouble, it’s enjoyable,” she said.

Hensley’s husband, Brian, started sister company Intego Financial Group, which focuses on succession planning, life insurance and investments.

“It’s more of a one-stop shop, and it seems like it’s a big need in the community,” Hensley said. “People want somebody independent and local, and somebody with their best interest.”

She said she thinks adding Intego Financial Group will help Donna Nelson Insurance become more well-rounded.

Donna Nelson Insurance Inc., which began in 1999, is at 21288 680th Ave., Alden, off of Freeborn County Road 46. It can be found online at www.donnanelsoninsurance.com.

“It’s an honor that we have children who want to take over your business,” Nelson said. “It’s a parent’s dream that it work out.”

Nelson said her daughter and son-in-law bring new insight and energy to the business.

Though she does not know when she will retire, Nelson said she is pleased to know that someone in the family can take over the business when the time comes.

In her spare time, Hensley said she enjoys walking, biking and running around Fountain Lake, along with sewing and golfing.

She described her and her husband as avid Minnesota basketball fans. She said she is a member of the Noon Kiwanis Club in Albert Lea and is on an event-planning committee in Alden.


Sarah Hensley 

Age: 34

Address: 1115 Lakeview Boulevard, Albert Lea

Occupation: insurance agent, Donna Nelson Insurance Inc.

Family: husband, Brian; dog Cash

Interesting fact: Hensley worked for the University of Minnesota men’s basketball office in college.