Chief Brand Officer, D&M Leasing
Larryssa Hilcher is a success at anything she attempts either in her professional or civic roles. There is a giving, generous side to her that attracts not only customers, clients and fellow workers, but all those she comes in contact with, says Susan Nix, who nominated her.
“We need more young women who are leaders in the man’s world of automotive to be role models for the young women coming up. There should be no field that a woman like Larryssa can’t excel in, including men-dominated ones,” Nix said.
Hilcher was born in Fort Worth and graduated with honors from Texas Christian University with an elementary education degree. She taught kindergarten for one year in the Arlington ISD before leaving to join her father, Larry Hilcher, in his Arlington-based Ford dealership.
She worked in every area of the dealership and eventually became the general manager, one of the few females to hold that position in the industry.
She left the auto business for five years to operate an upscale woman’s’ boutique in Arlington before rejoining father as CEO of Hilcher Holdings and LMH Investments.
She was hired in 2018 by D&M Leasing as the Chief Brand Officer of one the largest auto leasing companies in the country.
That’s the business side of Larryssa Hilcher. There’s a philanthropic side as well.
Hilcher has been involved with Cook Children’s Medical Center for more than 10 years, where she has accumulated more than 1,500 volunteer hours in the NICU. She also has volunteered with Big Brothers/Big Sisters among other activities and is active in various chambers of commerce and the Fort Worth Rotary Club.
Hilcher was recognized as one of the Women in Watch in business in 2016 by Fort Worth Business CEO magazine.
– Paul K. Harral
What advice would you give young women rising to a position of prominence?
Follow your dreams with courage and confidence. Always LISTEN to what others say, but do not be deterred/discouraged by naysayers who suggest you cannot or should not pursue your passion. Be bold. Be brave. Do not let your gender, race or age stop you from pursuing your passion. You are much stronger than you think.
You could choose to spend your time many ways, why do you choose to spend it the way you do?
For me, volunteering is one of the most meaningful aspects of life. Each Thursday, I am in the NICU at Cook Children’s Medical Center, as a Baby Buddy, holding and rocking seriously ill babies. The nurses say this is a public service for parents who are working or unable to be there full-time with their babies. In truth, I’m the one who benefits the most. Giving to others in need truly is a gift to yourself.
Who is the most significant role model and/or mentor in your life?
My mother is my personal hero and the most influential person in my life. Her unconditional love and support has given me the confidence to believe in myself and to feel that I can accomplish whatever I strive to do, and to handle whatever obstacles I encounter.
What book, movie, TV series or play influenced you growing up? Why?
Steel Magnoliasis my all-time favorite movie. It shows the strong bond between a diverse group of women – mothers and daughters and friends. The film portrays the emotional roller coaster of life and how our relationships carry us through the love, laughter, loss and tragedy we all somehow survive. Relationships and the experiences we share with our family and friends really are the bread of life.
What would you like for us to know that we might not know to ask?
Few people know that I’ve raced stock cars on the track – at speeds hitting 150 mph – beating all the men competing against me, including my father and my brother. That was a thrill! I also love riding cutting horses. … I decided to stick with the horsepower under the hood in my day job – managing dealerships and working in the auto industry – rather than trading it in for the four-legged kind!