For Susan Siegrist-Swanson, love for water and boats was practically a birthright. Her father worked on the Great Lakes as a young man, and Susan remembers spending every Independence Day at her aunt and uncle’s marina in Port Clinton, Ohio, where they watched fireworks at Cedar Point aboard a 36-foot cruiser on Lake Erie.
Born and raised in Bay City, Mich., Susan has spent most of her adult life working on the water. She married in 1984 and began working for a boat shop in Traverse City, Mich., where her husband managed the S2 sailboat charter fleet and gave windsurfing lessons. On nights when boats were unchartered, the couple would sail on Lake Michigan’s Grand Traverse Bay, and they also took a two-week sailing trip from Fort Lauderdale to the remote islands of the Bahamas.
Susan managed two marinas for nearly 20 years before she obtained a real estate license and began selling docks at northern Michigan’s first “dockominium” marina. In 18 years with the marina, Susan wore a number of hats, but she always found time to sail in Traverse City’s weekly regattas.
Jumping ship to Hagerty’s automobile department in December 2006, she eventually found her way to the marine side in September 2011.
“Hagerty has given me the opportunity to continue my love of boating,” Susan said. “Working in a wonderful environment that allows growth and expansion of my boating knowledge, listening to stories from our clients and working with a great group of co-workers in marine – life is pretty darn good.”
Susan has two children, a son, Drew, and a daughter, Sarah, “who continue to give me great pride.” In addition to boating and sailing, she enjoys kayaking, camping, movies, music/concerts, hiking, cooking, cross-country skiing, tennis and working with animals.
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