By Maddy Vitale
An Ocean City couple stood in a room with over 100 people zipping around them talking, laughing and having a good time Friday.
As they watched, the man, William McMahon Jr., looked at his wife, Sandy, and uttered one word: “Pride.”
McMahon started the McMahon Insurance Agency in 1981, after purchasing what was then known as the Chattin-Halliday Agency. In 1991 he changed the name to McMahon Insurance.
The Ocean City couple raised seven kids. As their family grew, so did the success of their business. And in the ’90s they turned over operations of the agency to William McMahon III, president of the agency, and his sister, Maura McMahon Primus. Three other siblings also work at the agency.
On Friday, an open house and ribbon cutting was held at the McMahon Insurance Agency’s new location at 901 Simpson Ave., in a large building at the doorstep of the city’s Ninth Street corridor, the main entrance into town.
“Pride, we have a lot of pride,” McMahon Jr. said.
“We are thankful. Everything worked out. They listened to us,” Sandy McMahon remarked about how their children continue to successfully run the family business.
William McMahon III, of Upper Township, knows what makes the business so successful.
“We certainly all get along,” he said, adding that people don’t believe it until they see for themselves.
He noted that he and the rest of the family are “thrilled to be on Ninth Street.”
Anita McMahon, William’s wife, said the family has a knack for working with customers in the insurance business.
“They take something really serious and make it fun. They have energy. They really take the time to work with someone when it may be stressful,” Anita said. “They treat everyone the way they would want to be treated.”
The agency has 40 employees in total, including the Ocean City office and two other locations, an office at 222 South Shore Road in Marmora and at 1400 Texas Ave. Suite 1 in Cape May.
“We have a lot of longtime employees. We also have sisters working for us,” McMahon Primus said. “We say this is the house that good service built. We truly work really hard.”
During the ribbon cutting ceremony, the Rev. Peter Joyce of St. Maximillian Kolbe Parish in Marmora gave the benediction.
Michele Gillian, executive director of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce, presided over the ceremony along with Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian.
“On behalf of the Ocean City Chamber and City of Ocean City, we welcome you in the rebuilding of Ninth Street and investing in Ocean City, America’s Greatest Family Resort,” Michele Gillian said.
She pointed out that there can’t be enough good said about the McMahon family. Three generations of the family attended the ceremony. Two of the McMahons were Ocean City’s Citizen of the Year, another two McMahons were past presidents of the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Gillian also said, “The McMahon Agency is a great family business that lives on in Ocean City.”
Other dignitaries also included Ocean City Council President Pete Madden, Council Vice President Tony Wilson and Councilman Michael DeVlieger.
The McMahon Insurance Agency serves the coastal area and is an independent agent representing all the top carriers to provide the best coverage, service and price, according to their website.
The insurance company traces its roots back to 1922 when it was Haney Lloyd Chattin Real Estate & Insurance. In the 1960s, Albert Halliday purchased the firm and it became the Chattin-Halliday Agency. In 1981, William McMahon, Jr. bought the business and began operating with two employees and one office.
The ribbon cutting ceremony and the opening of the new office represent the latest chapter in the company’s long history in Ocean City.
For more information call 609-399-0060 or visit www.mcmahonagency.com