Owner Troy Ford, Jaguar-Saab and Aston Martin Lagonda of Troy (Deceased) – Troy, Michigan
One of today’s most dynamic businesswomen, Mrs. Elder’s story is an inspiration to others. She was born in Mexico and came to the United States early in her teens not able to speak a word of English. She took over the Troy Ford auto dealership upon her husband, James Elder’s death in 1983. Although she had experience in the auto industry prior to her marriage, Irma had devoted her time and considerable energy to raising her three children. After her husband’s death, she continued to take care of her children and the Ford dealership, watching them all blossom over the years. Mrs. Elder is today not only the successful owner of Troy Ford, but also of Jaguar-Saab and Aston Martin of Troy (MI), Signature Lincoln-Mercury Jeep Eagle of Owosso (MI), and Jaguar Select Editions of Plymouth (MI). She has won many awards for her business achievements, including 1991 and 1992 Ford Motor Company Chairman’s Awards for customer service and 1994 Michigan Women’s Foundation Entrepreneur of the Year. Troy Ford ranks #6 in Hispanic Business Magazine’s Top 500 Hispanic-owned corporations. Mrs. Elder belongs to many civic organizations in the Detroit area and serves on the Boards of Directors of the Detroit Chamber of Commerce, the Economic Club of Detroit, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Detroit Branch, among others. She has also been frequently honored for her many charitable associations. Her accomplishments have been recognized in USA Today, Cram’s of Michigan, Working Woman Magazine, and numerous newspaper articles.