During the height of the AIDS epidemic in the mid 1980s, Lisa McGuire was a research chemist for Hercules-based Bio-Rad Laboratories, developing a leading edge HIV testing kit. Though still a scientist at heart, some 20 years later she prefers being on the marketing side of things, and now travels the globe as a Product Manager for one of the company’s major initiatives related to diabetes monitoring. But her journey at Bio-Rad was not a straight path.  

With a degree in chemistry from Hanover College, her first jobs were at Indiana University Medical Center and Scripps Research Institute. After her initial stint at Bio-Rad, she was recruited by Chiron Corporation to help develop breakthrough drug therapies. However, she yearned for more.  

Along her own path of discovery, McGuire found herself working for Benicia’s fashion boutique Christina S., before taking a long-term substitute position at Benicia High School. In 2005, she dipped her toe back into biotechnology, but this time at a Bio-Rad customer call center. This eventually led to the job she has today, which allows her to travel to destinations such as Tel Aviv, Shanghai, Tokyo, Milan, and Madrid, working face-to-face with the company’s global subsidiaries.

Although she would not trade her time in the lab, those years taught her something important about herself: “I like working with people and being more customer-facing. If I knew then what I know now, I would have gone to school to get my MBA in marketing much sooner.”

A devoted Benician with three children now grown, McGuire enjoys photography, quilting and cooking. A true scientist, she is now looking for the perfect milk to make mozzarella, and the best starter for homemade vinegar. Eventually she hopes to learn to make pastries just like the French do.

Founded in 1952, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. produces high quality products and solutions in the areas of Life Science and Clinical Diagnostics. The company has 7,750 employees worldwide with its global headquarters in Hercules, California. The U.S. headquarters are based in Benicia. The name "Bio-Rad" comes from the words biochemicals and radiochemicals.