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Their mother, Linda Lossia, raised four girls and "stressed from the moment we were born that we are just as good as any boy," Brewer said. But that doesn't mean the sisters were pushed to male-dominated fields. It was just instilled in them that there were no limitations on their capabilities. Today, the year-old sisters are top engineers at General Motors Co. Brewer is chief engineer on the Cadillac Lyriq, the brand's first all-electric vehicle. McQuaid is the first female executive chief engineer for the company's profit-driving full-size trucks.

The sisters are just two examples of women leading some of GM's most important programs. The moves made GM the first U. McQuaid, whose been with GM for more than 20 years, says diversity was always a focus. But "when Mary came on board it became more of a mission for the company, as opposed to just something that we talked about. Both have an aptitude for math and science and took all the advanced classes. They were often two of the few women in the room, but because of what their mom instilled in them, it didn't bother them much.

McQuaid remembers they were two of three girls in a high school drafting class. The sisters were determined to win an annual de state competition that no woman had ever won. But the sisters "were adamant that one of us was going to get our picture up there.

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We were going to be the first girl on the wall in the drafting class. After high school, the sisters attended the University of Michigan, took the same classes and studied together. Brewer didn't really have a passion for cars, but her father, the late George Lossia, did. He attended school for automotive engineering, but he never got to pursue his dream because he was drafted into the Vietnam War. He had to take on the responsibility of caring for his mother and siblings and never made it back to college when he returned from war.

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Unlike her sister, McQuaid had a plan from a young age to attend the University of Michigan and go on to work as a mechanical engineer for GM, her family's automaker of choice growing up. That inspired her passion for GM's brands, and she still remembers feeling cool driving her Chevrolet Suburban through her high school parking lot. Her push to become a mechanical engineer may have been driven by the fact that it wasn't an accepted career path for a woman, she said: "That made me want to do it just a little bit more just to show people that there was really no gender differentiation there.

Most of McQuaid's career has been spent working on GM's trucks. She recently became the executive chief engineer of all full-size trucks after working as executive chief engineer of the midsize trucks, as well as medium-duty trucks and vans. She also ly worked as the chief engineer for the heavy-duty pickups. McQuaid is referring to GM's zero emissions, zero crashes and zero congestion goal Women want nsa Sisters Oregon automaker plans to achieve with its electric and autonomous vehicle technologies.

The Cadillac Lyriq is one of them, and Brewer is leading the team to bring it to market. The luxury crossover is built on GM's new electric vehicle architecture. Brewer helped to build the new architecture — not something all auto engineers get a chance to do. Often they work to refresh what's already there, but this time Brewer got to help a new architecture come to life for Chevrolets, Buicks and Cadillacs. She took on the title of chief engineer of the Cadillac Lyriq in mid Brewer's first job was at Milford Proving Grounds, where she worked on interior acoustic, road, tire and engine noise.

The focus on improving sound quality for the customer gave Brewer "just a great overall view of the vehicle and instilled the customer focus on me from my first day on the job. She's also worked on the Chevrolet Volt. She was responsible for the engineering and integration of the seat systems. Brewer recently took center stage with others on the Lyriq team to reveal the new crossover. McQuaid had a watch party for the virtual unveiling.

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Brewer was McQuaid's biggest fan when she worked on the unveiling of GM's new heavy-duty trucks inand now with the Lyriq: "I'm her biggest fan, her biggest supporter," McQuaid said. It's a collective effort of a team behind every vehicle at GM. Brewer and McQuaid are there to help encourage team members, drive them and make sure they have what they need to get the job done and build a beautifully deed vehicle, in this case the Cadillac Lyriq. We're a team. We're a group. We can work through this problem because we all want to work through this problem. Beyond engineers, McQuaid and Brewer are wives and mothers.

They've done a lot together, including having their children at the same time. Brewer has Connor, 14, and Lucia, McQuaid has Josephine, 14, and Nicholas, At her remote office inside her Lake Orion home, Brewer isn't alone. The family poodle Crosby is often at her feet, and her children use the space for schoolwork while Brewer le the Lyriq team behind her laptop. On a recent morning, McQuaid made sure she fit in back-to-school photos and school pickup for her son that afternoon. They've learned to balance being the best at both jobs, even though sometimes it can be difficult.

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Facebook Twitter. Meet the twin sisters who are chief engineers for GM's most important vehicles. Kalea Hall The Detroit News.

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