Debb Williams: Discussing the importance of life insurance

Speaking with Debb Williams, a financial educator and Foresters FinancialTM insurance agent, it’s hard to believe that she wasn’t always excited about insurance.

“No one dreams of selling life insurance as a kid,” she says with a laugh as she starts to tell me more about the twists and turns that led to her new career. For someone who’s relatively new to the insurance world, Debb has a lot of passion for what she does. “I can really help make a difference in people’s lives,” she says. No wonder she loves going to work every day!

Debb has spent her entire career caring for others. She started off as a medical assistant, working with surgical and cancer patients, then transitioned to the nursery ward, where she supported new mothers and babies.

After 20 years of back-breaking work (no really, Debb actually had to stop because of back problems), she entered the school system as a substitute teacher. Debb then became a personal assistant for a terminally ill 6th grader, whom she bonded with instantly. “He was like a son to me,” says Debb.

Eventually, she entered the world of financial services, and given her benevolent nature, there was no better partner for her than Foresters.

Unfortunately, Debb knows the importance of life insurance all too well. Debb’s mother passed away at just 45 years of age due to breast cancer, only two short years after the death of Debb’s grandmother. Neither had life insurance when they passed away, and that had a significant impact on the family.

“It’s so important to have insurance,” says Debb while reflecting on her loss. “It’s a huge burden on your family if you don’t.”

Yet Debb continually meets with clients who are putting off the purchase of life insurance – just like her family once did. Fortunately, she’s able to speak from her own experience to help educate them about the risks.

“My mother and grandmother both put off buying life insurance, so I tell my clients how important it is to get it early, when it’s less expensive and you’re eligible,” says Debb.

“People think, ‘Oh I’ll get it when I’m older and I can better afford it’, but the older you get the more unhealthy you may become and the price goes up. You pay for car insurance, cable, your phone but none of these things are more important than life insurance.”

But it can be tough to convince people to prioritize purchasing a life insurance policy over more immediate and tangible items like their phone, or a fun night out. But Debb makes a great point: “Life insurance isn’t for you – it’s for your family. But while you’re still here, it is for you when you have insurance with Foresters.”

Because Debb is also a Foresters member, she and her family have had the opportunity to attend many free events through Foresters member benefits[1]. With three kids and three grandchildren, Debb knows how tough it can be to afford to spoil them as much as she’d like to. So anytime a Foresters event is taking place in her community, she makes sure to sign up.

Together, Debb and her children have attended baseball games, movies, the circus, Monster Jam and even the Harlem Globetrotters – all on Foresters dime!

“There’s a lot more to it than just an insurance policy; you also get immaculate savings on activities,” says Debb. “Four tickets to some of these events would cost me around one-hundred dollars, so without Foresters we probably wouldn’t have been able to go because it’s too expensive to purchase tickets for all of us.”

Even Debb’s 70 year old father has gotten in on the action by purchasing his own Foresters policy. Now he doesn’t have to rely on Debb to take him to the events. Instead he can treat his girlfriend for date night. Though, I’m not sure how thrilled she is about sitting through Monster Jam.

It’s also no surprise that Debb is eager to get more involved in volunteering with Foresters as well. “Foresters offers the opportunity to get involved in the community and be a part of something great even if you can’t volunteer on your own,” she says. “Foresters gives and they care.”

[1] Foresters member benefits are non-contractual, subject to benefit specific eligibility requirements, definitions and limitations and may be changed or cancelled without notice.

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Jennifer Peckett

Jenn has a background in partner management and content marketing. She loves to tell stories through a variety of mediums including blog articles, videos and media materials. Jenn covers community outreach and personal finance topics. She enjoys putting a personal spin on her articles to help make finance topics relatable – while still educational!