DENVER — Driving off the lot in a new car is an exciting experience, but the car buying process can be daunting, especially for minority buyers.
“There’s a huge disparity in communities of color when it comes to finances in general,” said Amanda Gordon, the owner and operator of GOJO Auto, at the first session of her community workshop, “Car Class,” in November.
“And I feel as though it’s my obligation to teach and educate,” she said.
Car Class focuses on financial literacy and guidance to minorities, particularly women — the two groups Gordon said are most vulnerable to falling into car debt. Gordon walked through fundamentals on understanding credit, budgeting and how to pick the right dealer to a class made up of the people who work with her at GOJO Auto.
Gordon is the first Black woman to own a car dealership in Colorado, and only one of just over a dozen Black women in the whole country to do so. Before her rise to the top, she said she struggled with making her car payments and has several repossessions on her record.
It wasn’t until she began her career in the car industry 22 years ago that she began learning what it takes to become financially healthy. At that time, Gordon took financial literacy courses and automotive seminars to break away from the pattern of debt.
“Being a woman in a male dominated landscape isn’t as challenging as one might think, if you have the right information,” she said of transitioning to the sales side.
Her own approach to selling cars prioritizes clear information about things such as pricing and purchasing power, she said.
“It’s all about awareness,” Gordon said. “If you know better, you do better.”