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Wells Fargo manager former Badger and Alaskan

Aaron Habermann, the new store manager of the Wells Fargo Bank in downtown Hudson, shouldn't have any trouble making conversation with customers.

The Hartland native was a reserve defensive end on the University of Wisconsin football teams that won back-to-back Rose Bowl games in 1999 and 2000.

He comes to Hudson from Palmer, Alaska, a town 10 miles away from Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's hometown of Wasilla.

Habermann said Palin occasionally spoke at meetings of the Wasilla Chamber of Commerce that he attended when she was mayor of the city and during her run for governor of Alaska.

He described her as strong-willed and said she ran as a reformist then, too. It was easy to do, he added, because there was plenty of corruption in Alaska at the time.

Palin sought federal earmarks for a bridge to Wasilla when she was mayor of the small city, he also recalled.

Habermann accepted a position at a Wells Fargo Bank in Kenai, Alaska, after graduating from UW-Madison in 2002. He was in Kenai for two years and then moved to Palmer to be the business banker at the Wells Fargo branch there.

He managed the Palmer bank for two years before coming to Hudson a month and a half ago.

Habermann said he enjoyed the salmon fishing and snowboarding in Alaska, but was ready to return to Wisconsin to be closer to family members and friends.

His big Rose Bowl championship ring and the No. 90 Rose Bowl jersey in his office will no doubt attract more attention here.

Randy Hanson

Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.

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