Your Story

Your Story articles, featured in your$™ magazine.

The DeBerg challenge
Last Modified: 11/26/2018
Del DeBerg may have retired, but he leaves a lasting legacy of challenging staff to take control of their financial future. . . . (Full story)

Welcome back, Wilcox!
Last Modified: 4/12/2018
Having the right protection, service you can count on, and a feeling of security is why you buy insurance. But for Tom, it was about getting a “good deal”...at first. . . . (Full story)

Before you turn 30
Last Modified: 10/26/2017
How you plan for the big financial moments in your 20s can have a rippling effect on your life. Emily Piehl isn't wasting any time. . . . (Full story)

You got this!
Last Modified: 11/7/2016
New Wisconsin public school teacher Molly Walsh Anderson shares four lessons that have helped her navigate new financial realities and responsibilities.   . . . (Full story)

Totaled!
Last Modified: 5/23/2016
Hitting a deer can be a traumatic experience any time, but hitting a deer during the holidays is even more stressful. Fortunately for this member, Member Benefits made it a little easier. . . . (Full story)

Bridging the generation savings gap
Last Modified: 4/25/2016
While the younger generation is facing new financial challenges, there are plenty of old school strategies and new solutions to help them make the most of their finances. . . . (Full story)

My 2 cents
Last Modified: 10/8/2015
Sarah Klein is a 27 year old art teacher—and a Millennial (born 1980 through mid 2000s). It’s a generation now facing adult decisions about their finances. Sarah shares her story about coming into her own financially and learning that, even when dealing with debt, she can and should still save for her future. . . . (Full story)

A bad thing gone good
Last Modified: 11/9/2016
Mark and Katie Campbell of New Franken, WI share what they went through when they had a fire in their home and their experience working with Member Benefits' claims department. . . . (Full story)

Recognizing educators who help colleagues make sense of their financial situation
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Thirty years ago Shari and Lewis Gunderson received—and took—financial advice from a colleague that had a significant impact on their financial security. Now they are passing along the same advice to others in and out of the classroom. . . . (Full story)

Fostering financial literacy in and out of the classroom
Last Modified: 6/30/2016
Imagine sharing your personal financial information with your students—your bank account transactions, your retirement account statements, even your bills. Patrick Kubeny, a nationally certified business education teacher at Rhinelander High School, not only sets the example, he is the example. He puts everything out there for all of his students to see, because he believes his real life examples are his strongest teaching tools. . . . (Full story)

Storm damage: Stay alert and stay safe
Last Modified: 11/9/2016
Looking forward to the promises of spring and summer? Remember that warmer weather also means the potential for severe weather. The Weilers share their story of just how quickly the weather can turn bad and cause substantial damage and the importance of having insurance with a company you can count on when the storm hits. . . . (Full story)

BIG issue: Small talk
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Is the topic of money the “elephant in the room” in your relationship? If so, you’re not alone. Many people in committed relationships underestimate the impact financial decisions can have on their partnership, their family, and their financial future. Communication is the key to making good financial decisions that will benefit you in the long run. When people’s feelings and concerns are heard, it’s easier to move forward with a concrete plan. Here’s why you should stop trying to avoid the money issue and start your own financial conversation. . . . (Full story)

The reluctant mentor
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
When you walk into a mall, what’s the first thing you see?” Rusty asked. I’m thinking McDonald’s, but I know that’s not the answer he is looking for. He helps me out. “A map of the mall with an arrow on it that says ‘You are here.’ The map tells you exactly where you are and makes it easy to get to where you want to go. Without the map, I could be wandering around the mall for hours trying to find what I’m looking for. Unfortunately, we don’t have a map when we start out to help us navigate finances. I’m a slooooow learner. It took me a long time to get to some point of understanding. I went from Point A to Point B by way of Point C.” . . . (Full story)

Gauging retirement readiness
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Not everyone can retire early. In fact, most people can’t. ACT 10 and other economic pressures muddied the waters for Wisconsin public school employees—especially for those between age 45-55. Many wonder where they stand and what they can do to salvage their retirement dreams. But, it may not be as bad as you think. . . . (Full story)

Retiring early: Right on schedule
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
In 2011, after 33 years as a Physical Education teacher in the Waukesha School District, Ken Seemann retired at age 55. Right on schedule. “I loved working with kids, but I have a lot of interests and hobbies, and I always wanted to be able retire at 55 so I could do some of the things I enjoy.” . . . (Full story)

The keys to retirement satisfaction: Prep + positive attitude
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
For Carol Gautsch, the decision to retire was an easy one. Her mother who suffers from dementia was deteriorating. Wanting no regrets, Carol retired in 2007 at the age of 58. “I wouldn’t advise anyone to just go for it. You have to do some planning and you have to figure out what is right for your life. But once you make a decision, move on and don’t look back,” says Carol. . . . (Full story)

Unsung heroes
Last Modified: 6/30/2016
Educators across the state find financial encouragement, advice, and guidance for becoming financially secure in the profession they love from someone down the hall. . . . (Full story)

Caring for and protecting elderly parents
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Maybe you’re not caring for elderly parents now, but you might be soon. Forty-one percent of baby boomers who have a living parent are helping take care of them with personal help, financial assistance, or both. Members Barb Kasten and Mary Dobbe are among them. . . . (Full story)

Grand theft auto: Stolen and recovered
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
At 4 a.m. on September 17, 2010, the phone rang at the home of Mark and Cheryl Campbell. “Getting a call at 4 a.m. is never good,” says Mark. It was their son Damon, who was in Dayton, Ohio, doing a surgical residency. Damon called because his car was gone. . . . (Full story)

Online, so fine
Last Modified: 6/30/2016
The Greenwalds have always been good at managing their money. Their careful planning allowed them to get their Masters without taking out loans, and two years ago they bought their dream home. Last year, Julie and Aaron Greenwald decided to invest some time increasing their financial knowledge. “Those who work in education naturally give a lot. It’s sometimes hard to give back to yourself. Even if it’s just taking the time to learn about your finances,” says Julie. . . . (Full story)

A tradition of teaching
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Leatrice Jorgensen’s kitchen table is not just a place to share dinner with her family. It’s also a gathering place where traditions are kept alive, stories are told, and a passion for learning and teaching thrive. . . . (Full story)

Nick’s long drive to retirement
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Do you know any 24-year-old who saves for retirement at a rate well above the national average, appears immune to the pressures of a spend-happy society, and still enjoys a fun and fulfilling lifestyle? Meet Nick Havlik. . . . (Full story)

Young money model
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Ryan Robarge is planning to retire…someday. He’s just 25 years old, and while retirement is the furthest thing from the mind of most people his age, he’s thinking and planning ahead. “I’m not sure it’s possible, but I’d like to retire by age 55 or 60. That would be ideal.” . . . (Full story)

Planting seeds of financial literacy
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
“Maybe my students won’t use it today. It might be 5 or 10 years down the road when they are buying a car or a house and they’ll say, ‘Hey, I remember something about that.’” . . . (Full story)

The retirement decision: An emotional rollercoaster
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Mike Gaynor retired in 2008 after teaching middle school for 37 years. Retiring wasn’t an easy decision. In his article, “Retiring Thoughts,” Mike, shares his experience and the mix of obstacles he needed to overcome to be comfortable with his decision to retire. . . . (Full story)

Sometimes less is really more
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
Several years ago, Terry and Carol Leaman made a big financial move—literally. They moved all the money they had saved for retirement to one place—WEA Member Benefits. “There were three reasons we consolidated: comfort, simplicity, and economic advantage,” says Terry. . . . (Full story)

Up in flames!
Last Modified: 2/6/2015
At 5:50 a.m. on February 12, 2008, Diane Luedtke told her husband Len she smelled smoke, and by 6:05 the flames were ripping across the roof of their Marshfield home. Here’s what happened. . . . (Full story)