As it celebrates its 20th anniversary, Webb Investment Services is also giving back to the community. At a recent client appreciation event, Webb Investment Services President Laura Webb announced that she would donate $2,000 to one of six charitable organizations: Helpmate, Friends of the Smokies, The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina’s Women for Women Fund, YMCA’s Camp Watia, Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy or Riverlink. Instead of choosing the winning organization herself, Webb invited her guests to choose. Votes were tallied at the end of the event, but to everyone’s surprise there was a tie.
“I was thrilled that everyone was so engaged,” stated Webb. “There are many worthy organizations that do great work in this community. I personally support each of the six organizations, so when there was a tie, there was no way I could choose one over the other, or split it between them. So, on the spot, I decided to give the original amount to both, doubling my client appreciation gift.”
The winners were Helpmate and Camp Watia. Ann Flynn, associate director of Helpmate and Paul Vest, president and CEO of the Western North Carolina YMCA were both in attendance and accepted Webb’s gifts on behalf of their organizations. Helpmate provides crisis-level services for victims of domestic violence and their children across Buncombe County. The YMCA is building Camp Watia near Lake Fontana, an affordable residential summer camp for children of all backgrounds across Western North Carolina.
“We are grateful to be the beneficiaries of this generous gift,” said Vest. “Laura’s work to increase the visibility of Camp Watia and her commitment to make sure this camp is affordable and accessible for kids all over Western North Carolina is extremely important. She’s a Y kid herself and we are proud that she grew up in Y programming here in Asheville. Now, Laura is combining her legacy with her love for the outdoors by introducing the next generation to our mountains, for it is they who will take care of our mountains in the future.”
After giving away twice her original commitment, Webb added yet another twist by combining all of the attendees’ names and allowing her husband, John Hoskins, to draw a winner. The winner, Ray Glass, was asked to choose a charity and Webb agreed to donate an additional $500. Glass chose Meals on Wheels.
Webb is a third generation Asheville native who returned to her hometown in 1995 for two reasons: to launch her own independent wealth management firm and to carry on her family’s legacy of service to Western North Carolina. Twenty years later, she remains an adept entrepreneur, champion of the WNC Mountains and women’s causes, and pillar of the community.
Laura Webb said she shares her forefathers’ goal of making Western North Carolina an even better place to live, work and play. “In 1939, when my great-grandfather was publisher of the Asheville Citizen-Times, the masthead said, ‘Dedicated to the Upbuilding of Western North Carolina,’” she said. “That is my goal… to be able to do that for my clients and those who live in this beautiful place. I think he would be pleased that I was doing exactly that.”