• August Member Spotlight-Latrobe Business and Professional Women (BPW)

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    Did you know there is a place where you can make a difference in your community, build lasting relationships and develop career and leadership skills? Latrobe BPW does all that and so much more.
    Business and Professional Women PA is a statewide organization comprised of nearly 2,000 women in 60 local clubs in 12 districts throughout Pennsylvania. Organized in 1919, BPW/PA is a leading advocate for working women and works on issues that touch women’s lives in a variety of ways. On a state level, BPW sponsors programs and scholarships that improve women’s lives and careers. BPW was one of the first women’s organization to formally endorse the Equal Rights Amendment in 1937 and BPW/PA remains on the front lines of the fight for equality for women in the workplace.
    Founded in 1929, Latrobe BPW is one of the largest local clubs with more than 100 members. On the local level, BPW’s initiatives include mentoring, scholarships, philanthropy, education, networking and community projects in the Latrobe and Derry area. Past and ongoing projects have included Adopt-A-Soldier, Project Bundle Up, Salvation Army bell-ringing, National Business Women’s Week, Mathcounts competition, Sharing and Caring Outreach, food drives, mentoring local youth, charitable collections – just to name a few. This year their state project is the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PACDV) and they will have several events supporting the Blackburn Center. 
    So, most of that information you could’ve learned by “googling” BPW, but what you may not know is you don’t have to own a business, or even work, to be a member. While it is true many members are women in business, none are just that. They are mothers, daughters, wives and friends. BPW is a network of women from all walks of life. In fact, one of the things BPW members pride themselves on is the diversity of their members. BPW welcomes all women. They know every member’s experiences, talents, background, interests and values help make them a stronger organization. There are many great stories and friendships that complete the sentence “Because of BPW….”                          
    BPW members come together for a variety of reasons, including making new friends, meeting new business contacts, personal growth, and of course, to support women’s equality in the workplace. 
    One of the club’s most significant projects is our support of Latrobe and Derry area youth through several annual scholarship and achievement awards. Local students from Greater Latrobe and Derry Area school districts can to apply for a Latrobe BPW Scholarship, a $1,000 award paid directly to the student’s chose educational institution and used for educational purposes. In addition, the club also presents achievement awards to Greater Latrobe, Derry Area and EWCTC students honoring past members Virginia S. Griffin, Mary Martha Himler, Geri McCartney and Jeanne VanHouten. 
    Latrobe BPW President Nicole Purnell says "Latrobe Business and Professional Women are proud to be members of the Greater Latrobe Laurel Valley Chamber of Commerce. Our members appreciate the opportunity to attend Chamber sponsored events under the umbrella of Latrobe BPW, and of course they love the
    Neighborhood Card. As a chapter, GLLV benefits our group in multiple ways. GLLV opens up various avenues of advertising for our group as well as providing us a platform to meet our “neighbors” in the community and to learn more about their businesses. We are strong supporters of not only women based businesses but also local businesses. We regularly attend the Chamber Business After Hours event as a means of not only networking but as a learning tool to make community connections. A membership to GLLV is priceless in terms of building
    relationships within our community."
    Latrobe BPW has been a Chamber member since 2015, and many BPW members volunteer on chamber committees, such as the Education committee, which helps provide career guidance to our local school districts. BPW members have also actively served on our ambassador committee, Banana Split Celebration Committee, and many others!
    Latrobe BPW meets monthly on the third Thursday of the month at 6 p.m. at Christ Our Shepherd, located on Route 30 West. 
    So, whether you are just looking to socialize and make some new friends or hoping to network and gain exposure for your business, Latrobe BPW has everything you need. Learn more at www.latrobebpw.org Like us on Facebook, Instagram #latrobebpw and YouTube. 
    Watch for Latrobe BPW at the October GLLV Chamber Business After Hours. They are looking forward to meeting you!
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