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Our Roots

Over three decades of building trust.

Kato Insurance Agency traces its roots back to 1960, when Gerald “Jerry” Michaletz moved to Mankato and opened The Michaletz Agency, Inc., with a focus on life and health insurance. Jerry was also a founder and original shareholder of Valley National Bank, which was the first bank to open in North Mankato after the 1932 “bank holiday” of the Great Depression.

In 1983, Jerry expanded into Property and Casualty insurance by purchasing a small book of business from John Sjulstad, and hiring his son Scott Michaletz to run the new operation as Kato Insurance Agency, Inc. Scott purchased the agency from his father on January 1, 1990.

The agency continued to grow throughout the years, both organically and through small acquisitions, including Pro Insurance in 1985, the Habinger Agency in 1987, and Willard and Williams Insurance in 2017.  Also in 2017, Kato Insurance was inducted into the Greater Mankato Business Hall of Fame.

Scott’s sons, Jon Michaletz and Matt Michaletz became minority shareholders in 2016 after each having worked in the agency for several years.

Today, Kato Insurance has grown to become one of the largest insurance organizations in the region, employing a staff of 15 professionals and managing in excess of $17 million in combined insurance premiums annually. The agency has remained locally owned and committed to supporting the communities we serve. To learn more, please visit our In Our Community page.

For further reading, please view the following articles:

The Art of Risk Management – MN Valley Business 4.13

Half a Century: A Bank on Belgrade – MN Valley Business 1.14