Shawn Russell – Aurora, IL
Shawn Russell is a life insurance agent in Naperville who doesn’t believe in the hard sell. When you meet Shawn, it doesn’t take long to realize that he’ll be with you for a nice long time. Here’s his story:
When Shawn Russell was a kid he LOVED to make money. He cut grass. He had a little printing business making banners and greeting cards, and he ventured out onto the golf course to sell pop to the golfers strolling by his house. He loved the look of the green bills, loved counting them, sorting them, keeping them, and loved what those bills could do. Shawn even used to iron his money.
“But then I got interested in girls,” he chuckled. Since then, he’s tried his best to hang onto money, though with wife, Tiffany, and two daughters, that may be a losing battle. Shawn has his priorities in order. “My daughters are amazing, they are fun. They both have a lot of their Mom’s happiness and energy which I love.”
Today, those girls give him an extra spring in his step and motivation to turn this one-time pop hawker to a man determined to help others grow, keep, and maybe even iron, their own money. He knows his clients want the best for their family, too. “I’m always more about educating than I am selling and pushing, that’s never been my style,” Shawn said. “I want people to really understand what they’re getting and make sure they’re going to be with it for a long time.”
Shawn’s clients have gotten used to how prepared he is for a meeting. He and his staff prepare many options for the client to review, just to make sure they understand which product can satisfy their need. Recently, a client passed away because hospital treatment was delayed for what seemed to be a common situation. While he was thankful he had persuaded the client to buy insurance a few years ago, it concerns him that so many people are still at risk. “People are not prepared. I can’t believe how many people I talk to that don’t have any insurance,” he said. He worries that his “don’t be pushy” style will allow a family to suffer.
“I wish I was more like ‘No, we have to wrap this up today. You need this today.” He did that with the family that unexpectedly lost the wife. Because of that, the husband had $100,000 to put to use. “You see these GoFundMe pages and people come up with two thousand dollars. When someone dies, what’s that going to pay for? It wouldn’t even pay for a funeral. I want to make sure they’re taken care of.”
As Shawn’s family grows up, he and Tiffany take great pride in showing their daughters how to make good decisions. This summer, Shawn has been able to spend a little more time at home, but loves when he leaves to go work. “What I REALLY love is that I have an appointment tonight in Sycamore, one tomorrow night down in Palos Hills seeing people.”
In the past, if Shawn’s rolling on down the highway, it would have been obvious that he’s a little bit country, and a little bit Rock ‘n Roll. But times are changing. Now, his daughters try to control his radio, and are composing their own soundtrack to this chapter of the Russell family life. They are cruising along, probably dancin’ and jammin’ to Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” in full voice, without a care in the world. Taylor Swift was pretty fond of money at a young age, too. But I bet she never ironed her money.