Maureen LaFontaine has been the backbone of the LaFontaine family business since the 1980’s. Not only has she been married to the same man for 42 years, but she raised 4 children who are actively involved in the business!
Maureen and Mike LaFontaine were high school sweethearts who started in the car business in Oakland County, adding Wayne and Washtenaw Counties as the years passed. In 1980, they bought a Toyota Store in Dearborn, later adding Honda, Scion, Kia, Suzuki and Hyundai. With sights set on the future, the LaFontaines went on to purchase a Chevrolet store in Dexter as well as a Dodge - Chrysler - Jeep dealership in Saline. The LaFontaines have also recently acquired a Nissan franchise. They have a 63,000 square foot dealership to re-locate the Cadillac - Pontiac - GMC and Buick store. This is a state of the art facility and the first Green Gold Certified dealership in the country for General Motors. This location also houses a salon, bristo/café, boutique, and a kids’ zone with a 450 gallon fish tank.
Maureen and Mike invite community groups and organizations into their dealerships to utilize their conference rooms and facilities at no charge. Everyone from the Motor City POCI Car Club to Avon has made use of this generous offer. The American Red Cross has hosted a Blood Drive at their location and the Cub Scouts of America even competed in derby races at the Highland store!
Not only does Maureen invite groups in, but, with the help of her daughter, Kelley and several key staff members, she is also actively networking and ensuring that the LaFontaine Automotive Group is represented within structured groups such as Business Networking International, Local Business Networking, Detroit and Downriver Business Association, and numerous Chambers of Commerce. Maureen makes certain the LaFontaine Auto Group is consistently present at local business expos and community events. The LaFontaines have sponsored and volunteered at such social events as Milford Memories, Sparks in the Park, Howell Balloon Fest, Taste of Clarkston, Taste of Dearborn, and the Dearborn Homecoming “Cruisin’ Dearborn” Classic Car Parade.
Maureen and Mr. LaFontaine have also generously worked with several charities including the National Kidney Foundation, the Autism Campaign, and the Childhood Cancer Campaign.
Maureen’s efforts and those of the entire Automotive Group have been recognized over the years. In 2009, Inforum, Michigan’s premier organization for professional women, granted Maureen the “Most Powerful and Accomplished Women Business Leaders” award. The LaFontaine Automotive Group is listed in Crain’s Business Top 100 Private Businesses in Michigan and is included in the Top 10 Auto Dealer’s in Michigan!
The LaFontaine stores have all individually had the prestige of winning several awards including the Toyota President’s award, the Honda President’s Award, Best Auto Dealership in Oakland County according to the Oakland Press, The GM Mark of Excellence award no less than 20 times, The Pontiac Master Dealer Award, The GMC North Central Region Top 25 GMC Sales Leader, Oakland County Board of Commissioners Proclamation, Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition for the LaFontaine Auto Campus, Business of the Year by the Highland Business Association, as well as Recognition from Carbonfund.org, Channel 7 WXYZ-TV, and Oakland County for the Green efforts at the Highland store. The LaFontaine Buick - Pontiac - GMC store was recently named #1 in Sales in the Nation!
Maureen is the mastermind behind the innovative ideas that make the “Family Deal” a recognized brand - not only for the sales associated with their dealerships, but due to green efforts that impact our environment. She is an example of hard work, commitment and family values that transcend into a successful business woman.