Girlington Garage — Vermont has yet to send a woman to Congress, but the state does have female representation in one of the longest-standing old boys' clubs in the service industry: auto repair. Most mechanics are men working at repair shops owned by men.
Demeny Pollitt became the rare female owner of a car repair shop when she opened Girlington Garage in South Burlington in 2009. An automotive technology graduate of Vermont Technical College, Pollitt pledged to give women a place to bring their cars without fear of being intimidated or duped.
The concept worked. Girlington treats all customers — men, too — with respect and honesty. True to the biz's nondiscriminatory commitment, Pollitt hires mechanics of all genders as long as they're up to the tasks of repairing brake rotors and rotating tires. There's free coffee in the lounge, and a fleet of loaner cars means you don't have to wait while your wheels get fixed.