About ABWA

Our Mission:
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.

In the 1940’s, working women were making new inroads to the business world. Women were changing the face of industry and having a positive economic impact. Hilary A. Bufton Jr., a Kansas City businessman, recognized women’s potential, but saw the need for an organization to support and empower them to reach their goals. As a result, in 1949, Bufton founded the American Business Women’s Association. Professional Development remains the cornerstone of ABWA today.

Chief Executive Officer
As the CEO of ABWA, Carolyn Bufton Elman carried on the work of her father with the belief that regardless of status, women deserve the right to fulfill their expectations through unlimited opportunities for professional development and training. After 25 years Carolyn has retired and named Rene Street as the CEO of ABWA. Rene will lead the association with the same energy and enthusiasm that has help women in business over the past 60 years.

The ABWA Board of Directors
The National Board of Directors governs the affairs, policies and business of ABWA on behalf of its members. Board members also serve as trustees of the Stephen Bufton Memorial Educational Fund (SBMEF), ABWA’s national scholarship trust.

ABWA is a prestigious organization made up of workingwomen across the nation. A majority of members belong to local chapters and Express Networks®. Nearly 1,000 chapters and networks throughout the U.S. offer networking and professional development programs via monthly meetings. Whether you are actively seeking to advance to the next level, or to stay current with business trends and skills; whether you dream of breaking out on your own or are running your own business; whether you are looking to stay active in retirement, are a stay-at-home mom ready to reconnect or are a full-time student looking to explode onto the job scene – ABWA has a membership option that is right for you. Regardless of which you select, your first step is to join the Association as a national member. When you pay your national ABWA membership dues, a whole world of opportunity will open up to you!

Professional Development
The American Business Women’s Association offers learning opportunities for women who are taking their business careers to the next level.

Annual Regional and National Conferences:
ABWA offers conferences led by professional speakers and educators from many industries. Quality seminars and workshops feature topics relevant to the needs of today’s working women.

The American Business Women’s Association:
PO Box 4757, Overland Park, KS  66204-0757  |  Phone (913) 732-5100  |  Fax (913) 660-01011  |  Visit us online at www.abwa.org. © 2006

ABWA-KU MBA Essentials:
One outstanding and exclusive opportunity is the ABWA-KU MBA Essentials program, a product of a special partnership between the University of Kansas School of Business and ABWA. Each MBA Essentials course delivers critical business subjects at a master’s degree level including “Accounting Tools for Financial Success,” “Organizational Behavior and Management Principles” and “Human Resources: Principles and Practices.”

Women as 21st Century Leaders: ABWA’s partnership with Park University offers an opportunity to learn the techniques that successful female leaders use to guide their companies, managers and employees to success.

The Stephen Bufton Memorial Educational Fund (SBMEF) has contributed to date more than $17 million to women’s professional success through education.

National Publications
ABWA offers a vast collection of informational tools to their members. Women in Business®, the award-winning national magazine of ABWA, offers articles on a blend of personal and professional development topics. Published three times a year, Women in Business features a continuing education series that helps members improve their business and career skills. Members also enjoy custom-designed online newsletter Achieve.

Annual Events
Members have the opportunity to experience ABWA on a grand scale at regional district conferences and at a national conference. They participate in workshops and seminars, leadership training, tours and entertainment opportunities while exchanging experiences and networking with other ABWA members.