…the world is divided into three major classes of people: the wreckers, the criticizers, and the BUILDERS…builders are those that get the satisfaction out of seeing the results of what they are doing.
The Builders Association of Northwestern Pennsylvania was formally chartered on October 31st, 1945 as the “Home Builders Association of Erie County”. The earliest records from formal meetings date back to December 6th, 1944 with Mr. Harry Baughman acting as temporary chairperson, and eventual first President from 1945 to 1946. The first organizational meeting was held at the Erie Club, under the sponsorship of First National Bank. There were twenty charter members.
One of the founding members, Mr. J. C. Spencer, opened the first meeting by stating, “…the world is divided into three major classes of people: the wreckers, the criticizers, and the BUILDERS… builders are those that get the satisfaction out of seeing the results of what they are doing.”Those twenty individuals built an organization that declared its charter with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) on January 22nd, 1951 and its non-profit status on February 28th, 1951, as evidenced by a decree issued by The Honorable Judge Burton Laub from the Erie County Court of Common Pleas and witnessed by Lawrence Taylor, Prothonotary of Erie County. (Note the name change to the “Builders Association of Northwestern Pennsylvania”).
In 1957, members built the Association’s first office building on West 26th Street, with the resources and donations of over 150 companies.By 1988, the Association had outgrown its 26th Street facility and moved to a new office at 2415 West Grandview Boulevard. Members generously donated time and resources for the building construction. To showcase the new facility, the Association held a “Building Dedication Ceremony” on July 11th, 1988. In attendance were U.S. Congressman Tom Ridge (soon to be Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, then Director of Homeland Security for the U.S. Government), Millcreek Township Supervisors, and Mr. Ken Colton, the then Executive Vice President and CEO of NAHB.
To meet changing business needs, in 2011 the Builders Association relocated to 1311 W. 26th Street in Erie.
In 2015 the BANWPA moved again to their current office at 1703 Peninsula Drive.
- 1960 – 1st Annual Trade Show held at Penelec Electric Company
- 1979 – 1995 – “Better Living Expo” held annually at the Millcreek Mall
- 1987 – 2007 – The Builders Association hosted the annual Parade of Homes
- 1996 – Present – The Builders Association hosts the Annual Home Show