Archive for the 'Networking Events' Category


Connect at BusinessExpo! Longview’s Largest B2B Event!


Connect at Longview’s Largest B2B Event!

Business Expo is your chance to connect with over 60 companies in one location to get the products and services your company needs!  This is Longview’s ONLY comprehensive Business to Business event during the year.

Low-cost business development sessions will also be presented during Business Expo.  This is an opportunity for you and your employees to receive quality education without traveling out of town and incurring additional costs. Leadership Development Program Sponsors are and Evans World Travel

Business Expo kicks off at 1:00 pm on Tuesday, May 1, 2012, at Maude Cobb Convention Center.

This year’s event is presented by the Longview Economic Development Corporation and sponsored in part by Computerland of East Texas, Good Shepherd Medical Center and UnitedHealthcare.

Admission to the show floor is free and open to the public until 5:00 pm.  However, Chamber members are given exclusive access during Business After Hours, which begins at 4:45 pm and will conclude at 6:30 pm.

   Act Now!  Space is Limited!





ABC Auto Parts Recognized as Large Business of the Year

The Longview Chamber of Commerce’s Large Business of the Year Award was created to highlight and celebrate the accomplishments and contributions that make an impact not only on the business community but the community at large. Large businesses are the backbone of the economy. They create jobs, cement communities, and build strong cultures.  Tonight’s recipient, ABC Auto Parts,  has been in business since 1968 creating over 400 jobs. 

 ABC Auto Parts is the leading supplier of auto parts to automotive repair centers in the Shreveport/East Texas area. Family-owned since 1968, their number one priority is and always has been customer satisfaction. With their commitment to customer service and an unbeatable product selection, ABC is a complete resource for a wide range of customers; including do it yourselfers, new car dealers, automotive repair shops, tire stores, and oil change centers. ABC is a trusted name and the local leader in auto parts and service.

The company was started in 1968 when Loyd Pyle opened ABC Auto Parts #1. One year later he opened his second retail store. That year he also opened a warehouse distributorship and began selling other parts stores and new car dealers.

By 1985 the company had grown the wholesale business significantly, built a new 63,000 square foot distribution center and was operating four retail stores. Company President Larry Pyle and Vice President David Gordy began to expand the company store base, opening about one store per year from 1985 to 2000.

Today the company is still expanding through the addition of new stores. The goal remains to be the number one parts store in each new market it enters. The company now consists of the warehouse distribution business, twenty six retail stores, two automotive glass shops, and a truck accessory store.

ABC remains a family owned company. Today the company is owned and managed by founder Loyd Pyle’s two children, Larry Pyle and Karen Cloud, and several third generation family members. ABC remains committed to high quality products, superior customer service and strong employee relations; the business principles established by Loyd Pyle in the early days of the company.


Longview’s Business Chronicles Features Sweet Treats and Gifts

Promoting our members is one of the core competencies of the Longview Chamber of Commerce.   Recently, we kicked off a new strategy called Longview’s Business Chronicles to help promote Shop & Dine in Longview.

This week’s business feature is on Sweet Treats and Gifts.  They offer a variety of sweet goods.  As the only candy store in our community, they are the only store that offers 24 flavors of Jelly Belly’s, 18 flavors of saltwater taffy, a Pucker Powder Machine with 12 flavors, novelty candies, Zots, 6 flavors of Pop Rocks, 11 flavors of caramel/chocolate apples that be dipped into just about any candy, and a line of gourmet chocolates.

Owners Belinda Freeman and Teresa Boyce credit the Small Business Development Center, research and finding a preceptor for their success.  “The SBDC can guide you in the right direction.  They have a wealth of knowledge and know where to guide you in the community.” Teresa stated.

Belinda and Teresa said that they joined the Chamber because the Chamber’s vision reiterates their own values, “To be recognized as an effective resource, provide relevant, innovative and impactful programming that ensures a healthy business climate and an enhanced quality of life for Longview.”  They cannot wait to jump into the knowledge and experience the Chamber has to offer because they see that one day they can give those experiences back to others.

If you are looking for shop that offers an array of sweets and exceptional treats, stop by Sweet Treats and Gifts.  They are located in the French Quarter shopping center beside Starbucks.

Sweet Treats and Gifts is open Tuesday – Thursday: 10:00am to 6:00pm and Friday – Saturday: 10:00am to 7:00pm.

Sweet Treats

409 W Loop 281, Suite 102

Longview, TX  75605


Morgan Abbigail Featured in Longview’s Business Chronicles

Promoting our members is one of the core competencies of the Longview Chamber of Commerce.   Recently, we are kicked off a new strategy called Longview’s Business Chronicles to help promote Shop & Dine in Longview.

This week’s business feature is on Morgan Abbigail owned by Morgan Tomberlain.  We asked Morgan what she believes is unique about her business.   What sets Morgan Abbilgail apart from other stores, is the customer service, education and experience in the fashion industry. Morgan attended textile science classes and also worked under a designer in New York.  Everything Morgan has learned she applies to her business. She focuses on the wants and needs of each customer as an individual. Every person has a unique body shape, size and taste in clothing. Her goal is to coordinated outfits for her customers that allows them feel great about themselves. Morgan dresses ladies of all ages from teenagers to octogenarians and everyone in between. The best part of it is, they leave Morgan Abbilgail’s feeling fabulous and confident.

Diana Northcutt asked Morgan Tomberlain why Morgan Abbigail joined the Chamber? Morgan explained, “Growing up in a family of Longview small business owners, I know the importance of promoting our community and encouraging our citizens to shop local. I feel the Longview Chamber of Commerce helps with both of these tasks. In addition, the Chamber is a valuable source that puts me in touch with other local business owners and they also provide educational seminars with timely subject content. “

Morgan Abbigail specializes in women’s and men’s clothing and provides a stylish retreat for the fashionable shopper. From the store’s cozy yet chic atmosphere to the superior customer service, Morgan Abbigail brings a whole new shopping experience to Longview.

Morgan Abbigail is open Monday through Friday 10:00 to 5:30 and Saturdays 11:00 to 4:30.

Morgan Abbigail

1505 Judson Road

Longview, TX 75601


Bussey receives standing ovation at Chamber luncheon

Balloonist Bill Bussey Recognized as 2011 Tourism Partner

Bill Bussey received the 2011 Tourism Partner of the year award Tuesday, May 3rd at the Longview Chamber of Commerce luncheon.   In 2007, the Longview Convention and Visitors Bureau began a tradition of recognizing a Tourism Partner of the Year.  This recognition is awarded to a local business or person that has demonstrated a commitment to supporting tourism in Longview through service, sacrifice and individual involvement. 

This year’s recipient opened his dental practice in Longview, Texas in 1971. He continues his practice of general dentistry and placing implants today with no plans to retire from the profession he loves.

Our honoree is also a professional balloonist and has logged over 3,000 hours flying hot air balloons. His awards, honors and accomplishments are so numerous we are able to mention only a small fraction of them here today.

  • Ranked No. 1 pilot in the National Balloon Racing Association – 1988
  • Ranked No. 1 pilot in the Balloon Federation of America – 1989
  • Set 29 United States National Records for Distance and Duration in a balloon
  • Set 15 World Records for Distance and Duration in a balloon
  • Recipient of Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta “Spirit of Ballooning Award”
  • Shields-Trauger Award for Most significant flight in a hot air balloon
  • NAA Award for One of Ten Most Memorable Flights in Aviation
  • Only balloonist inducted into Texas Aviation Hall of Fame, 2007
  • Montgolfier Diploma, the Highest International Award in Ballooning

Thirty four years ago, this year’s recipient organized a hot air balloon event in Longview that became the largest event of its kind and class in Texas and second only to the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta in scope and importance.  Thirty years ago, he created the Balloon Glow which has been copied around the world and is a part of almost every hot air balloon event. 

This year the recognition goes to an individual that has worked selflessly for more than 34 years to help Longview attain elite status in the international world of hot air balloon racing.  It is because of his dedication to bringing excitement, prestige and recognition to Longview, Texas.   His resolve packaged with experience, knowledge, and reputation has helped Longview be selected to host the United States National Hot Air Balloon Championships in 2012, 2013, and 2014. 

For this commitment and passion for our city, Longview, Texas, we select Dr Bill Bussey for the 2011 Tourism Partner of the Year.


launch of virtual marketpace simplifies search for area service providers provides Chamber members a virtual marketplace

The days of searching aimlessly for a plumber, repairman or other service provider only to wait in vain for a return phone call have been numbered, and now with the launch of to the Longview area, locals can say goodbye to thumbing through directories or scrolling through online lists for good.

Longview Chamber of Commerce officially announces today the launch of its partnership with This new service that is now available will allow local companies and service providers to be linked to potential customers when establishing a free account on 

“By partnering with the Longview Chamber of Commerce the online service marketplace has a resource of local service providers, so users can start posting and receiving offers from area businesses right away,” explains Carl Hicks, Jr., CEO of “And businesses love getting immediate access to local consumers in need, free real-time sales leads and targeted online advertising opportunities. It’s definitely a win-win.” 

In the Longview trade area, the ZIP code-based service will give businesses a real-time connection with consumers who are looking for their products or services. For consumers, helps answer these universal questions:

When can they do it?

  1. What’s the cost?
  2. Are they reputable?

Whether looking for a landscaper, wedding photographer, accountant or carpenter, posting to is free and easy. The user simply lists the title and description of the service needed and identifies a category, subcategory, date needed by and ZIP code. Businesses learn instantaneously that someone is in need of their services via SMS text or e-mail and can immediately post an offer. The consumer then selects the service provider of his or her choice and has the opportunity to write a review following the completion of the work.

 Kelly R Hall , President/CEO of the Longview Chamber said “To better connect local business in our community this new tool has the power to not only generate leads within our own member businesses but it will also create new opportunities to get business in our local community utilizing the latest technology. combines the best features of other Web-based services — directory services, reviews, ratings and social networks — to create a comprehensive patent-pending approach to connect users and services providers. The website also works in business-to-business transactions, with requests for proposals and generation of business for larger firms, general contractors and government agencies that require widespread bidding.

 “Even though our service may soon be nationwide,” said Hicks, “our company embodies true community entrepreneurship, building commerce at the local level.”

 For more information, sample posts, categories, tutorials and locations coming soon, visit


Johnson and Pace Chamber’s Small Business of the Year Award Recipient

Johnson & Pace, Inc.

On Tuesday, May 3rd at the Lognview Chamber’s Small Business Celebration Luncheon Johnson & Pace will be name Small Busienss of the Year.

Johnson & Pace Incorporated, headquarters in Longview with additional offices in Shreveport and Tyler.  Johnson & Pace has grown into a full-service engineering, architecture, and surveying firm in less than 15 years. The company provides a broad range of services including; land development, structural design, and construction administration.

Johnson & Pace’s entrepreneurial spirit is transparent throughout their team. Key team leaders took time to research and meet to develop the company’s core – mission, vision, and strategic plan.  Although it took time, Johnson & Pace staff members now know what the company prioritizes–personal communication and quality deliverables.

Johnson & Pace is committed to setting a good example as a corporate citizen through community service. As a company they participate in Keep Longview Beautiful and Adopt-A-Park by having been a sponsor for Kidsview Park, as well as participate in Relay for Life and Junior Achievement.  In addition the company sponsors and donates to many Longview Ballet, Taste of Longview, American Heart Association/Go Red, Safe Haven, LISD Foundation, Junior League and Preservation Longview.  Employees are also engaged in the community by volunteering for Junior Achievement, Longview Symphony, The Ty that Binds, Longview Rotary, Salvation Army, Longview South Rotary, Pilot Club, and a host of religious organizations.

“Since founding Johnson & Pace (formerly FWJ Engineering) in 1995 our company has developed and/or utilized innovative business strategies to grow our company.  Because of our successful business model over the past 3 years when companies have had to lay off our company has expanded services and added 20 additional staff members.” – Wade Johnson, PE – Majority Owner

For more informatino about the Chamber’s membership luncheon contact 903.237.4000 or visit

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