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East Windsor, New Jersey
“I am very proud of my role in ensuring that women have a voice in automotive retailing.”
“I am very proud of my role in ensuring that women have a voice in automotive retailing,” nominee Maguire said. “One of my most personally rewarding accomplishments was creating a forum for women to network and share their experiences, challenges and successes.”
A 1966 graduate of Clifton High School in Clifton, New Jersey, Maguire did her undergraduate work at The Ohio State University in Columbus, where she graduated in 1970 with a B.S. in education and was president of Phi Mu. She earned an M.A. from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in 1971; an M.S. from Pace University in New York, New York, in 1973, and an executive M.B.A. from Harvard Business School in Boston, Massachusetts, in 2002. She is a member Phi Delta Kappa, a professional association for educators, and Pi Lambda Theta, the education honor society.
Maguire worked in the education field from 1971 to 1984 and didn’t even think about a career in the automotive industry until her son was born in 1982 and she was preparing a will. “My attorney asked me what I would do if my husband, who owned Bob Maguire Chevrolet [in Bordentown, New Jersey], died tomorrow,” she remembered. “Stunned by the question, I realized that I would have to run the dealership. So, began a journey that has greatly enriched my life.”
Her first move was to obtain an insurance license and work in the dealership’s finance and insurance (F&I) department. Maguire attended the NADA Academy, gained experience in the Chevrolet store and then opened Saturn of Bordentown in 1991, Saturn of Toms River (New Jersey) in 1993 and a Nissan franchise in 2000.
“When the auto industry collapsed in 2008 and General Motors was faced with a government bailout, I had four dealerships,” she said. “Sadly, the Saturn nameplate was killed and the Chevrolet dealership was closed. I could have thrown in the towel, but I was determined to overcome these challenges.”
Today, Windsor Nissan continues to thrive and Maguire’s son is part of the family business. “The arc of my career in automotive retailing is one built on entrepreneurial grit, survival, adaptability, dedication and perseverance,” she said. To that end, she has opened a Farmers Insurance Agency, Agency-Plus by Marcy Maguire, at the dealership, which services auto customers and the community at large
And Maguire has been an effective advocate for women car dealers and entrepreneurs. She served as NADA director for women east of the Mississippi from 2003 to 2008 and NADA director for New Jersey from 2008 to 2017, raising awareness about women’s issues in the industry and offering mentoring opportunities. She was also asked to participate in the Women Business Leaders Summit in Finland in 2002 with women from the Baltic, who in turn came to the U.S. to experience working here. “This was a wonderful experience that showcased the many advances made by women globally in the business world,” she said. Maguire has attended the summit numerous times and has twice been named one of the 100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry by Automotive News.
On the local front, Maguire has also supported numerous charities and organizations, including New Jersey Dealers Care USO Barbecue for the Troops; The Valerie Fund, which aids children with cancer; East Windsor Volunteer Fire Company and East Windsor PBA golf outings; Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) Hindu temple in Robbinsville, New Jersey; Hightstown Fair in Hightstown, New Jersey; Mayors Shining Star Gala to benefit Better Beginnings, a child development center in Hightstown; and Providence House Domestic Violence Services of Catholic Charities, to name a few.
For her fundraising efforts for Providence House, Maguire was proud to receive the Light of Hope Award from Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton. “Our dealership invited a dozen of the women who relied on Providence House as our guests for the event,” she said. “We provided cocktail clothes for the occasion so they could celebrate their survival and enjoy an evening out. But most memorable for me was having my preconceived notions about who I was helping shattered. There was a dozen of ‘me’ sitting around the table, which opened my eyes.”
She added, “If I am remembered for nothing else, I hope my legacy will be viewed as a positive example of why it is so important that women are not sidelined in the automotive business.”
Maguire was nominated for the TIME Dealer of the Year award by Jim Appleton, president of the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers. She and her husband, Robert, have one son.