OUR BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

  • * This organization is a not-for-profit corporation under the state laws of INDIANA.

  • * This corporation is organized for the primary mission of enhancing the economic activity of the Westport area. Enhancing activity shall include sustaining quality as well as encouraging growth.  Economic activity shall include agricultural, commercial, industrial, and professional concerns.

  • * The secondary mission shall be to support the civic and cultural well-being of the Westport area.

  • * The organization consists of businesses within a seven mile radius of Westport. 

  • * The businesses serve approximately 1600 families living within this area with a total income of $20-$24 million.

 

 

 

Current Board of Directors:

 

Sandra Cunningham Billieu  - President
Bryan Gatewood - Vice President
Bonnie Hahn- Secretary
Teresa Watkins - Treasurer
Mike Gasper - New Business
Sandra Cunningham Billieu & Diana Wildman - Public Relations/Town Crier Contact
Jackie Elliott & Terri McGrath - Board Member/New Membership
Terry McGrath- Board Member
Greg Watkins - Board Member
Lizette Bell - Board Member
Dana Witkemper - Board Member

The Westport Area Business Association meets on the Third Tuesday of each month in the Front Room of the Community Building.

Lunch is at 11:30 a.m. ($7 per person) and meeting begins at Noon Sharp.

All written correspondence should be addressed to : The Westport Area Business Association, PO Box 535, Westport, IN 47283-0535

 

Westport Business Association History

 


The Westport Business Association, Inc. was started by George Cann who called the first meeting on September 3, 1985.  Eighteen very interested business people attended this first meeting which was held in the old meat-market building now occupied by Stults Outdoor Products. Three subsequent meetings were held on the 10th, 17th and 24th of September, and the Business Association was formally organized at the September 24th meeting. Officers elected at this meeting were George Cann, President; Arvis Hampton, Vice-President; Donna AmRhein, Secretary; Roy Saylor, Treasurer; and Kathy (Fields) Holdreith, Assistant Treasurer.  The organization was originally called The Independent Westport Area Business Association.

The group lost no time in making some very important decisions.  They decided upon the name and also decided that the area to be served would include those persons living within a seven-mile radius; and established a good advertising program. Objectives which the group considered then, and is still trying to achieve today, include the following:
1.  To keep area income from leaving the community   
2.  To have a greater variety of goods and services available    
3.  To devise means of getting people to come here to buy    
4.  To encourage local business people to support each other    
5.  To help new business people with licenses, tax forms, etc.    
6.  To attract new businesses, including small factories    

In the fall of 1986, Wheaton Tubing contacted local officials and expressed an interest in locating a factory at Westport.  The town council members referred Wheaton officials to officers of the Business Association, and the Business Association was very instrumental in helping Wheaton in every possible way and in convincing them to locate here.  Dave Stults, who served as president of TIWABA from 1986-1989, was chosen by Wheaton officials to manage the new factory, and he served in that capacity during its first year of operation. They have hired mostly local people, and this has provided a real boon to the local economy.    

The Westport Business Association has sponsored many money-making projects which include Box Lunches, Go-Kart Street Races, Rodeos, and Golf Tournaments.  Money from these projects and from membership dues constitute most of the operating income for the group. An advertising periodical--The Town Crier--is mailed out every other month and is generally self-supporting.    

Past-presidents and the years served are as follows:   

George Cann 

1985-1986

Dave Stults 

1986-1989

Mike Gasper

1989-1991

Fred AmRhein  

1991-1992

Glen Baldwin

1992-1993

Don Hurt

1993-1994

Ruth Diekhoff

1994-1995

Beverly Elliott

1995-1996

Dave Stults

1996-1998  

Faith Coombs

1998-1999

Robert Goldey

1999-2000

Dave Stults

2000-2002

Fred AmRhein

2002-2004

Steve Hodgson

2004-2005

Mike Gasper

2005-2006

Ruth Diekhoff

2006-2007

Dave Stults

2007-2009

Diana Miller

2009-2011

Ruth Diekhoff

2012-2014

Diana Wildman

2015-2016

Sandra Cunningham Billieu

2016-Present