To bring together businesswomen of diverse occupations and to provide opportunities for them to help themselves and others grow personally and professionally through leadership, education, networking support, and national recognition.
Even in 1949 Hilary A. Bufton Jr., a Kansas City, Mo., businessman realized business training and education were two of the hottest workplace issues. Mr. Bufton recognized the positive economic impact of working women and their need for a support organization. On Sept. 22, 1949 Mr. Bufton founded the American Business Women's Association. ABWA has dedicated more than 50 years to women's education and provided workplace skills and career-development training for more than 545,000 members.
Today, Mr Bufton's daughter, Carolyn Bufton Elman, carries out his vision as executive director. Under her direction ABWA produces comprehensive business education programs for thousands of working women. Ms. Elman is a recognized leader. She offers insight in solving economic an social dilemmas through Leadership America, the U.S. Department of Labor Women's Bureau and Glass Ceiling Commission testimony. She is an authority on workplace issues which affect women.
ABWA's national scholarship trust, the Stephen Bufton Memorial Educational Fund (SBMEF), has contributed more than $11 million to women's professional success through education. Through an innovative chapter/network sponsored program, members may apply for SBMEF grants and loans for business-skills training to keep pace with changing workplace demands.
A district vice president represents each of ABWA's six districts. Most members belong to one of 1,400 local chapters/networks where they can attend monthly meetings for networking and professional-development.
ABWA represents 23 different industries, more than any other businesswomen's organization. The top industries for ABWA members are:
20% of ABWA members are business entrepreneurs.
* Information is based on 81% of collected member profiles.
Women in Business magazine
Women in Business is our award-winning bimonthly national magazine covering business trends, business ownership, self-improvement and retirement issues. Members can boost business skills and knowledge with each issue by completing continuing education credit articles