Beth Bowman, chief development officer of the Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce, has been selected to join an elite network of more than 5,000 women as a member of the Leadership Texas Class of 2014.
Bowman is one of 84 outstanding women leaders competitively selected from across the state to participate in the longest-running women’s leadership development program in the United States. Leadership Texas, now in its 32nd year, is the flagship program of the Texas-based foundation headquartered in Dallas.
“It’s a great honor to be selected for this premier educational and development opportunity and to be among influential women and leaders in Texas,” said Bowman.
Bowman has had a significant impact on Irving’s bottom line. In her nine years with the Irving Chamber, she has designed and executed program initiatives and strategic projects to foster business retention and engagement of the 8,500 Irving-based businesses, including 53 Fortune 1000 companies. Bowman works closely with the Irving Economic Development Partnership to relocate and expand existing businesses in the city — resulting in a 5.2 percent unemployment rate, which is lower than the state average of 5.8 percent and national average of 7 percent as of November 2013.
She is also responsible for growing the Chamber’s revenues and membership, which represents 90 percent of the Chamber’s $4 million operating budget. Bowman has also spearheaded local and statewide advocacy on legislative bills and city ordinances, such as a more relaxed alcoholic beverages ordinance for Irving businesses and passage of Proposition 3, which provides tax relief to aerospace businesses in Irving and throughout the state.
“I’m looking forward to learning more about statewide challenges and how we can create models of success in partnerships with nearby communities to further enhance our region and the state’s economy, including education and infrastructure,” Bowman said.
Leadership Texas was launched in 1983 as the first statewide program for women’s leadership development. The theme for the 2014 program is ‘The Power of Community: Exploring Our Uniqueness; Sharing Common Ground.’
“Throughout the year-long program, [Bowman] will have the opportunity to broaden her perspective on our state by exploring Dallas, Laredo, Abilene and Austin, where each cities opportunities and challenges will be highlighted,” said Candace O’Keefe-Mathis, CEO of Women’s Resources. “She will receive cutting-edge information from renowned experts, government officials and other leaders to positively inform her work and community for years to come.”