COMMITTEES & PROGRAMS
The Women’s Division of the Grapevine
Chamber was formed in 1965 with the
purpose of fostering the spirit of cultural
and commercial progress among the
women of Grapevine, to encourage
good will and fellowship and to enable
them to cooperate with the Chamber
in the advancement of the civic,
industrial, commercial and
educational interest of the
City of Grapevine.
2017 Theme: "Helping our community with love and hard work it's worth it"
The Women's Division Luncheon is the third Tuesday of each month.
See the Chamber's online calendar for more details.
Learn more about being a sponsor of the Women's Division by clicking here.
Susie Howell, 2017 Chair
History of the Women's Division
Originally written by Kathee Livengood, 2009
The beginning – Cecelia Box, Mary Lou Dieterich and Betty Yancey sat around the breakfast table one morning drinking coffee and wondered what they – the women of Grapevine – could do for the community. Their husbands were all businessmen and they thought the women should be doing something to help. So the Women’s Division of the Grapevine Chamber of Commerce was born in 1965. Mary Lou Dieterich was the first President. My sources jokingly told me that their two main projects were: making sandwiches to sell at the Boat Races out on Grapevine Lake and decorating for the annual Chamber banquet. (“Decorations for the Chamber Banquet” was listed as a club project in the Women’s Division Directory through 1989).
If you look at the old records you find that one committee of the Women’s Division was the “Beautification of the City of Grapevine.” Among some of the most prominent projects included were new trash receptacles on Main Street in 1972, the concrete planters on Main Street in 1974, the planting of bulbs in Heritage Park, and the planting of trees at Dove Park.
In November 1974 the Christmas Spirit Fund was started with a $25 check from the Women’s Division to an account at First National Bank to help those in need at Christmas. That first year, 110 people in 27 families received food, clothing, warm blankets and other needed items. In January, 1975 it was decided to make it a permanent fund to help year round. The Christmas Spirit Fund account has been in place since then.
In 1974 the Women’s Division sponsored and published a Reference Directory that listed city officials, businesses, churches and organizations. This was the forerunner of today’s Chamber Directory.
In the 1980’s Falah Crouch’s daughter came home from school and told her that one of the girls in her class did not have her school supplies so the teacher put her name up on the board. Falah came to the Women’s Division Board and made a plea. And so the Christmas Spirit project was started to furnish school supplies to all GCISD students whose parents could not afford to buy their supplies.
The Women’s Division has always supported our school district and in 1965 they started selecting and honoring the Teacher of the Year. This was made up of a committee of Women’s Division members and nominations were sent from each school. This is now done within the school district to uniform guidelines so our teachers are eligible for state and national recognition. The New Teacher’s Luncheon was another project started by our group and now continued by the school district.
In April 1996 we had the first Great Taste of Grapevine as the kick-off event of The New Vintage Wine and Food Festival sponsored by the City. It was held at the Convention Center and we worked very, very hard to get 20 to 24 restaurants there. We have outgrown the Convention Center and have moved to DFW Lakes Hilton and it is a stand-alone Women’s Division event that raises funds for Christmas Spirit.
What started out as a group of Grapevine women wanting to give something back to the community has grown to be a group of women that the community comes to, to get the job done. The Women’s Division of the Grapevine Chamber of Commerce is a “can do” organization that promotes friendship, philanthropy and business among its members, the Grapevine Chamber and the community.