Washington, D.C. — Collision Repair magazine is saddened to hear that Sheila Loftus, publisher of Hammer and Dolly, founder of CRASH Network and co-founder of Women’s Industry Network, has died.
The editor and publisher of Washington D.C.-based trade magazine Hammer and Dolly for more than 30 years, Loftus was a trailblazer in the industry. She was the executive director of the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association; founded the CRASH Network, a weekly publication of industry news and co-founded the Women’s Industry Network. In 1996, Loftus was inducted into the collision repair industry’s version of the Hall of Fame–the Hall of Eagles.
Her impact was international in scope and, in the words of Collision Repair magazine publisher Darryl Simmons, “Sheila was a pioneer.” While Loftus was intent on providing the industry with information they could use and succeed, she was also known for quirky and memorable features like Hammer and Dolly‘s “Whoopie Car” issue and its annual swimsuit issue.
Loftus retired from the industry in 2008, residing in New York City’s Washington Heights neighbourhood until her death on May 11.
“Not only was Sheila one of the first women of prominence I remember in the industry–she was also a fearless supporter of shops,” added Simmons. “Fearless is actually too weak of a word.”
Join Collision Repair magazine in remembering Sheila Loftus.