She obtained a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) in 1987. While working fulltime with the City of El Paso Engineering Department, she obtained a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from UTEP.
Her engineering career started with the City of El Paso Engineering Department as a Design and Construction Engineer. During her job with the city, she prepared plans and specifications and supervised several City projects, including street and drainage improvements.
After working for the city, she moved on to work with the United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC). At the IBWC she expanded her project management skills into large-scale public works projects. She worked on the Americas Dam and International Dam systems. She was also responsible for the management and accounting of the water distribution along the Rio Grande corridor, from Elephant Butte in New Mexico to the Amistad Dam near Del Rio, Texas.
In 1999, Margarita incorporated Licon Industries, Inc. During her ownership of this company, she was the construction engineer for the corporation. She designed and oversaw the construction of several single dwelling residential projects. As the construction and project engineer, her duties included everything from finding financing for the projects to the purchasing of all construction materials.
In 2002, she incorporated Licon Engineering Company, Inc (dba LEC Group). Margarita Licón is the first Woman Engineer to own and manage a construction and engineering company in El Paso. LEC Group is a woman-owned, 8(a) certified company doing business throughout the southern United States for federal agencies such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Department of the Army, Air Force, and General Services Administration, among others.
Under her direction Margarita has grown LEC Group into a multi-million dollars company. She opened markets and directed her company to work with Federal sector clients. Through various federal government programs, she has secured several multi- million dollar contracts with different federal agencies and the private sector. She has expanded her business now having offices in several cities through Texas, New Mexico, California, and Mexico.
In 2003, Margarita was recognized by the Senate of the State of Texas as “Women Pioneering the Future” and was selected as a “Role Model for the City of El Paso”. Her company was recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as Family-Owned Business of the Year in 2006, and in 2005 by the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as a “Future 15” recipient, as well as with the “Entrepreneur Spirit of the Year Company” in 2010.
Margarita is very involved with the local community. She is a past board member of the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She and her younger daughter assisted the Civil Engineering Department at UTEP in a marketing campaign promoting civil engineering careers among women. She is a founding Board member of the UTEP Alumni Academy of Civil Engineers, past Board member of the City of El Paso Brownfields Redevelopment Board, Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce Leadership El Paso Class XXVI, past board member of the El Paso Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers, Latinas 100, Past president of the 8(a) and Government Contractors Association, and a past board member of the Texas Society of Professional Engineers. She has also served as a past board member for the Magoffin House. Ms. Licón is a very active member at her church, Abundant Living Faith Center and a member of the downtown Rotary Club of El Paso.