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Sarah Walsh

About Sarah




Chief Operating Officer




1108 Livingston Ave.
Helena, MT  59601
P.O. Box 6127
Helena, MT 59604-6127

"Clients, colleagues, communities – at the end of the day, if we’ve made decisions in light of these three groups, we’ll be successful.”

As Chief Operating Officer, Sarah’s focus is broad, providing the overall direction of activities relating to the operations of PayneWest Insurance, an independent agency with multiple locations across Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. PayneWest has nearly 800 employees and ranks 31st in the “100 Largest U.S. Brokers” as published by Business Insurance in 2019. The company has also been named a “Best Places to Work in Insurance” by Business Insurance for the past 3 years. Her responsibilities affect every area of the organization, making it essential that company practices reflect and reinforce PayneWest’s philosophy of independence and a strong, healthy culture, of which she is a big fan. “If our colleagues are happy and engaged,” she says, “our clients and communities will be well-served.”

Sarah has been with PayneWest since 1993 and has served the company in a variety of roles. Prior to her current position, she was the Managing Executive of Administration, overseeing Human Resources, Education & Development, Marketing, Facilities, Community Outreach and General Administration. Positions prior to that include Controller, Operations Manager and Surety Manager.

Sarah enjoys walking, hiking, travel, reading, going to movies and spending time with her large extended family and friends. She has two children and lives in Helena, Montana.

Below is a summary of professional, education and community involvement:

- Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Director (2019 – present)

- Carroll College, Trustee and Current Vice-Chair (2017 – present)

- Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Helena Branch, Director and Past Chair (2015 – 2018)

- Foundation for the Diocese of Helena, Trustee (2011 – 2017)

- “Main Street Montana” Telecommunications & Interconnectivity Key Industry Network, Board Member appointed by Governor Steve Bullock (2014 – 2015)

- Montana Family Education Savings Program Oversight Committee, Board Member and Past Chair appointed/reappointed by sitting Governors, (2001 – 2008)

- Recipient of the Warren L. Nelson Award from Carroll College – 2008

- St. Peter’s Hospital Foundation, Board Member (2001 – 2007)

- Carroll College Saints Athletic Association, Board Member (1995 – 2006)

- Carroll College IMPACT Campaign Co-Chair (2003)

- Bachelor of Arts in Accounting, minor in Business Administration, Carroll College (1993)

- Cincinnati Insurance – Agency Leadership Institute (2017)

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