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Better Business Bureau in Springfield Celebrates 80 Years of Service

The Better Business Bureau of Southwest Missouri is celebrating 80 years of service. KSMU’s Kaitlyn Schwers spoke with a couple members of the bureau on business ethics and how the BBB has changed over the years.
Better Business Bureau
Mayor Bob Stephens (left) presents a proclaimation to Judy Mills (right), president and CEO of BBB on July 10, 2013. /Credit: Kaitlyn Schwers

Since 1933, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) has served consumers and businesses with ethical guidance. Part of its mission is to build trust between businesses and the community. Now, as it celebrates its 80th anniversary, it’s looking back on the progress it has made.   

Judy Mills is president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau.  With over 20 years of experience at the BBB, she has seen some changes in business practices.

“Well, in some industries, we’ve seen ethics decline. In others, we’ve seen it increase, so it kind of depends on the industry itself, whether they really want to adhere to good ethics in business or not,” she explained.

Among the issues the Better Business Bureau addresses, Mills says that scams are one of the most common complaints it helps consumers with.

George Thompson is with Thompson Sales Company, which has been BBB accredited since 1934. He says the bureau does a great deal to help people know who they can trust.  He has seen the bureau change over the years as technology has progressed.

“Since they’ve invented the Internet, it’s even better because they can do online and see who they want to do business with and feel comfortable that they’ve picked the right provider of services,” he said.

During the celebration of the 80th anniversary, Mayor Bob Stephens gave a proclamation in honor of the Better Business Bureau.

“Now more than ever, with all the advertising, with all the social media, with all of the opportunities for incorrectness to appear out there, kind of a watchdog organization is extremely necessary and that’s the role that the Better Business Bureau fulfills,” he said.

Judy Mills says the Better Business Bureau looks forward to the future.

“It’s through the support of ethical businesses that allows us to continue what we do,” Mills said.

Learn more about the Better Business Bureau by visiting bbb.org.

For KSMU News, I’m Kaitlyn Schwers.