Arab American Heritage Month: Natasha Magrath
Thank you Natasha Magrath, owner of You’ve Got Maids NoVa, for answering our questions! Learn more about the DEIA Committee here.
Where were you born and raised and when/why did you come to Loudoun?
I was born and raised in Lebanon. During Lebanon’s Civil War in the mid-1970 my family fled to France where we have relatives and I lived there before returning to Lebanon. I moved to the USA in December 1999 to work as a controller in my ex-brother-in-law’s family business, and I became a U.S. citizen in 2002.
I acquired my You’ve Got Maids franchise and opened my business in April 2017. I selected Sterling in Loudoun County as our office location due to numerous factors including demographics and its central location to our servicing territory which spans from McLean to Waterford. Our office is close to Route 7, Route 28 and the Dulles Toll Road which made Sterling a very attractive location.
What was your first experience in business and how did you get into your current line of work?
I earned my accounting/finance degree in Lebanon. After arriving to the U.S. in 1999 I worked in the family business for several months. I then moved to the hospitality industry accepting a position as an Accounting Manager for the Sheraton Hotel in Washington, DC. From there my career advanced with several commercial real estate and property management companies.
However, after over 25 years in corporate world, I yearned to own my business. I didn’t know what type of business, but after careful research I decided to purchase You’ve Got Maids franchise. Northern Virginia’s economy, coupled with the busy lives we all lead, and horrendous pre-pandemic rush-hour traffic were determining factors in entering the cleaning business. People who can afford to hire a professional to clean their home do so and Loudoun and Fairfax counties are two of the wealthiest in the nation, so we saw a great opportunity to grow our business while at the same time giving back to the community.
Have you had any special mentors or inspirations that influenced your career?
My dad for sure!! I give him a huge credit for who I have become and who I will be 20 years from now. My dad was a physician and my mom a history teacher. Education was very important to my parents, and they wanted my sister and I to be well-educated. They enrolled us in private catholic school from K-12 which helped me being able to attend college. I grew up learning from my dad that if you have a dream or have passion for something, go for it and don’t give up easily, and nothing is impossible. Nothing is easy in this world, and it takes time. I recall him saying, “Don’t be afraid to dream too big, nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself”. I also learned from him always do the right thing, be humble, have a mission and goal and pursued them. He was a huge giver and did a lot of fundraising for poor people in my country.
What is the best part of your job and why?
The best part of my job is when I walk into my office every day, I see the smile on the face of all my employees. As a leader, I found the most powerful motivation to my employees was simply keep them happy!
I also enjoy meeting my clients when performing an estimate in their home. The diversity of Northern Virginia affords me the opportunity to meet people from many cultures, with diverse backgrounds and lifestyles. My meetings help me learn and grow as a person while at the same time start the important relationship building process with my clients. Our business entails my employees entering their home each week or every other week, often when they are not at home so establishing trust and confidence of each and every client is extremely important
I also meeting other great business owners and organization representative in Loudoun county through numerous networking and charitable events. I have made many new friends over the past five years and have learned invaluable things from them, both professionally and personally.
What is it like working in Loudoun/Northern Virginia?
Community is everything to me. When I started You’ve Got Maids in Loudoun, I knew this business would be bigger than me. I prayed I would be in a position to give back and I am beyond thrilled that I have been able to do just that. I love this community and I believe in doing good.
I have supported both financially and through volunteer time several nonprofit organizations in Loudoun County. I strive every day to give back to the community that has done so much for me.
I was recently appointed to the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors and also the Loudoun Literacy Council’s board where I also am an officer serving as Treasurer. In addition, I recently joined the Chamber’s DEI committee, and we will be doing a lot of great things this year.
What does National Arabic Heritage Month mean to you?
It is all about celebrating the history and the heritage of the Arab Americans. Faith, family and community are three essentials of my culture. There are a lot of notable Arab Americans in business, politic, education, medicine, and media.
What are some of your favorite things to do when you are not working?
Having been raised in the Mediterranean, I love the water and I enjoy being at the beach. I love to listen to music, classic rock is my favorite. I also enjoy visiting local restaurants and wineries with friends and family. In addition, I love to travel and I accompany my husband Mike on most of his international and domestic business travels.