Margaret Duggan, first employee of Cleveland Credit Exchange, dies


She was the first employee hired at what was then known as Cleveland Credit Exchange by Bill Jones, father of Allan Jones.

She worked for the company more than 50 years.

Throughout her impressive tenure, Margaret Duggan kept credit records on everyone in Cleveland, storing much of the information in her head. Merchants could call her and ask for her immediately.

Jones said she never wanted to do anything but be a credit reporter — she didn’t want to supervise. Rather, she enjoyed being a credit reporter, which she did for more than 50 years.

Bill Jones bought the Credit Exchange July 1, 1946, selling the business to son Allan in 1977, after which Duggan continued working for the company.

By the time Allan sold the Credit Bureau database in 1988, Credit Bureau Services was the largest privately owned credit bureau in Tennessee, covering 63 counties.

Jones sold the credit bureau database to Equifax in Atlanta. The company then focused on mortgage credit reporting and collections. Jones built it into the largest collections agency in the state, with offices from Memphis to Atlanta. Jones sold this business in 1998.

Jones said as long as he worked there he doesn’t remember Duggan missing a day being sick. She will be sadly missed by the Jones Management team.

Jones’ assistant, Debbie Layne, worked with Duggan since 1976. Duggan was known by anyone who extended credit up through 1996.

Over time, the Credit Bureau evolved into what is today Jones Management Services and Check Into Cash, so in essence, the companies are celebrating their 70th anniversary next year. Were it not for Duggan, they may never have made it past year one.

A full obituary will be published in the Cleveland Daily Banner later this week.


No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment


Print subscribers have FREE access to by registering HERE

Non-subscribers have limited monthly access to local stories, but have options to subscribe to print, web or electronic editions by clicking HERE

We are sorry but you have reached the maximum number of free local stories for this month. If you have a website account here, please click HERE to log in for continued access.

If you are a print subscriber but do not have an account here, click HERE to create a website account to gain unlimited free access.

Non-subscribers may gain access by subscribing to any of our print or electronic subscriptions HERE