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Women in Business 2021: Colleen McGuire, Silver Fern Healthcare

  Colleen McGuire Employer: Silver Fern Healthcare Title: Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer See all Women in Business 2021 honorees
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McGuire is the co-founder and CEO of Silver Fern Healthcare. Founded in 2013, she led Silver Fern from a startup idea to a multimillion-dollar revenue operation. Working with the executive team and Board of Advisors, McGuire sets the company’s vision and strategy, ensuring its commitment to meeting its mission. With 40 years of business experience and an MBA from Harvard Business School, she has held senior profit-and-loss (P&L) leadership positions in large public financial service companies, consulted to CEOs, and as executive director, taught business strategy and ran the University of Connecticut’s Graduate Business Learning Center.

What’s been your biggest professional accomplishment so far?

Launching Silver Fern and getting this amazing research, now product, to the market. We took proven methodology from clinical studies, looked at treatment as usual and other market options, spoke to stakeholders, built what clinicians tell us is an amazing product and got it to market.

What’s the next big goal you want to accomplish professionally?

We are improving quality of life for people and having a significant, positive impact on healthcare in the U.S. Going forward, we will take Silver Fern global. It is our responsibility and obligation to ensure that as many people as possible have access to the Silver Fern tool for improved health.

What’s one of the biggest professional challenges you’ve overcome?

Getting through the bootstrapped phase of starting a company, also called, “the valley of despair.” I’ve lived through it and come out the other side, and I’m proud that I accomplished it in an industry that was new to me, but in which I am passionate about making change.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic forced you to adapt as a leader?

It has been challenging! I believe one of the most vital parts of an organization is its culture. It’s tough to build a company and a strong culture on Zoom. It has forced me to think even more proactively about team symbiosis and daily about the wellbeing of the team.

What legacy do you want to leave after your career is over?

I would like to be remembered as a Level-5 leader, most importantly, leading with compassion and being an effective champion of our mission. I would like to be remembered as having been someone who cares deeply about her people and someone who had tremendous positive human and societal impact.

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