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Tuesday, May 05, 2009


By Peter Biadasz
Southern Plains Bureau Chief
(Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico)

I have had the privilege over the years to have had very positive interaction with the Broken Arrow Business Women's Association (BABWA). Many of its members are involved in the community in such ways that our paths cross regularly. BABWA has as its mission to: Provide professional and personal support, camaraderie, networking and education through the collective voice of business women. The group was founded in 1996 by Betty Kennett, Sandy Southard, Teresa Morrison and Michelle McKown to fill a need in the community for a professional women's organization.

The group meets the third Tuesday of each month from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. for their monthly luncheon at Tarp Chapel and Gardens, a beautiful and picturesque wedding chapel and reception facility overlooking a stunning landscape. No matter what time of year, the glass walls reveal surroundings that set a warm tone for the meetings. In addition, for the past six years BABWA has held a Business Extravaganza for an opportunity to showcase businesses to BABWA members and guests. This is accomplished by combining the lunch with many booths “manned” by member businesses and a very large attendance. It is a great time of networking and business learning for a few hours.

Babwa is highly organized. Officers include the President, Vice-President, Secretary, Vice-Secretary, Treasurer, and Vice-Treasurer. The Executive Committee consists of the officers and the immediate Past President. The Board of Directors, consisting of the current officers, including vice officers, the immediate Past President, and the standing committee chairs, manage the affairs of BABWA, including arranging for an annual review of the financial records. There are also standing committees such as the Membership Committee, Program Committee, and Public Relations Committee. Each Committee establishes goals for the coming year.

The group has an Annual Meeting of the Membership every December. One of the honors bestowed at that meeting is the Founder's Service Award. The Founders’ Service Award is an award given to an outstanding BABWA individual who has demonstrated continued involvement in BABWA above and beyond expectations. The award is given to someone who has served as an active member in good standing for a least one full calendar year, has demonstrated commitment and dependability through their efforts in helping and has assisted in organizing and participating in BABWA functions. Each year, nominations are taken for this award which is voted on by the previous recipients. The award is given at the December Christmas Banquet.

In addition, every other year, leadership supplies a list of local organizations to the membership for voting to select the main focus of donation distribution. As fundraising and donations allow, BABWA also makes donations to several other community organizations. In addition to financial support, the general membership also volunteers, donates requested items and provides non-monetary support. Last year, for example, when the community food banks were hit hard by a combination of external and internal factors, BABWA members and their companies donated over 50 food baskets to help with the holiday shortfall. These donations were over and above the money given by BABWA.

Teri Dorshorst has been involved in various leadership roles within BABWA over the years. She shared with me that “as business woman there is much emphasis on creating a very nurturing environment. Relationships and a sense of community are top priority. Experienced members’ mentoring younger members is strongly encouraged. The group works hard to foster strong relationships with the local chamber, the city and the local board of education.”

Babwa has an informative and great website that even allows for members to invoice themselves for dues payments. This helps to makes the job that is dreaded in many groups, Treasurer, to flow that much better. To learn more about this outstanding organization, feel free to go to

Peter Biadasz, author of such book as More Leads as well as Increase Your Sales And Lower Your Golf Score, is President of Total Publishing And Media. To contact Peter about getting your book published feel free to contact him at

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