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Sally Mainquist

Helping to end Alzheimer’s one step at a time

September 6, 2022

Sally Mainquist Every year, even as the leaves begin to change, the days begin to shorten and the evenings become cooler, the flowers remain a sight to behold — or at least the Promise Garden flowers displayed during the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s event.
Among those leading the charge is MNCPA member, and Alzheimer’s Association of MN – North Dakota board member, Sally Mainquist. The annual Alzheimer’s Association’s event is one of Sally’s numerous passions.
Like many, she has been directly affected by Alzheimer’s, losing her mother to the disease at age 75, more than a decade after she was diagnosed. It took Sally a long time to talk about it without getting teared up, but following a presentation from a colleague, Sally decided it was time to get involved.
“I needed to put my big girl pants on, quit sniffling and do something about this, so I joined the board six years ago and got pretty involved,” she said.
And she really has, including actively fundraising and serving as chair of Twin Cities’ walk in 2019 and 2020. Under Sally’s direction, the 2019 Twin Cities event proved to be the largest in the nation out of 630 walks, with more than 10,000 participants, raising $1.7 million.
“I think that’s the biggest feather in my hat,” she said.
Of the top six leading diseases, Alzheimer’s is the only one without a cure, Sally said, and money raised through the event goes to fund Alzheimer's care, support and research, for which there is a great need.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in three seniors die with Alzheimer's or another type of dementia, and more than 6 million Americans are living with the disease. Yet, despite its prevalence and impacts on individuals and society, it can be challenging to discuss.
“Alzheimer’s isn’t something that you talk about at the water cooler,” Sally said. “You never see somebody coming to work with Alzheimer’s. Somebody doesn’t get diagnosed and leave the next day because of Alzheimer’s. It’s something that people don’t want to talk about; there’s a lot of denial out there. A lot of people are scared.”
This year, as in years past, Sally will walk with her organization’s team, the Veritae Group. She is the CEO and co-owner of the local high-end interim staffing company that focuses on placing experienced accounting and finance professionals. Along with business partner, Kris Larson, Sally has made it a priority to give back.
“We have another partner out there, and it’s called the community. We give a third of our bottom line back every year to our employees and the community,” she said. “We’re big believers in giving back.”
In addition to her work with the Alzheimer’s foundation and membership with the MNCPA, Sally has been involved in numerous boards, with a particular interest in helping other women succeed and advocating for ethical business practices.
She encourages others who are interested in being more involved or looking to volunteer to focus on organizations and issues they are truly interested in and care about.   
“Join something because you have a passion around it. Just don’t join because you want something for your resume,” she said. “You need to have a passion around it, and you need to take the time to really do it.”

Get involved

Sally encourages those who are interested in finding a walk in your area to sign up for this year’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s. The Twin Cities event takes place Sept. 17.

Topics: Member Profiles