Gail Dunn, Who Won't Be Fooled

Gail Dunn opened her own business when she was 62. She found her true calling: saving women from being bullied by mechanics. Now she's nearly 70. Her business is thriving.

It all started one morning when Gail's car wouldn't start. She immediately realized the issue was with the gas pump. But the mechanic at the auto shop just shrugged, eliminated some other fictitious problem, and charged for his service. The next day, the car once again did not start. Dunn, who worked in the auto industry for many years, easily resolved her problem: she bought a new gas pump and asked some friends to help her install it. After, she started thinking: how many women drivers must suffer every day from the fraudulent behavior of auto mechanics who use the fact that women often know little about cars to their advantage?

That's how the Women's Automotive Connection was born. Gail Dunn opened an educational center where women could take short auto repair courses and learn how not to get conned.

'Only about a hundred women came that first year, but then they brought their friends and now we have about 5,600 clients per year, ' says Dunn. W.A.C. provides many services, from a telephone hot-line for information like where to go if your car breaks down, to educational camps that provide a full course of study.

'All around the world, mechanics fool people, but as soon as you start to understand how a car works, it becomes difficult to fool you - you can force any careless mechanic to be honest, ' Gail Dunn assures. 'I also noticed how hard it is for people to buy a car without overpaying. That's the new direction of our business - offering consultation to car buyers'

Dunn claims that her age is only an asset in her business.

'When you are in the consulting business, it's better to be older. I have a good understanding of what people need, what problems they tend to have, and what they feel, ' she explains.

Recently, more and more men have been coming to Gail Dunn's 'women's' center. It turns out, they have the same issues with mechanics as do women.