Marybeth Stevens

After a career that took her to Mexico and South America, Marybeth Stevens is running the El Paso Better Business Bureau, the nonprofit that helps both consumers and businesses in a massive territory.

It is difficult to identify a single moment when we, as a community, collectively realized that we want better – that we expect more.

Among other things, we want quality service, education, health care, retail, hotels, restaurants, transportation and leadership. There is no denying there has been a sea change. What propelled this change in our expectations? What made us realize that we could have the best – without losing our unique identity and all that makes El Paso so special?

The list is long and diverse, and if you are a regular reader of El Paso Inc., you know the struggles and successes of many of the people and institutions who have championed a new level of respect and quality over the last decade.

The R1 designation for UTEP, Class A office space, boutique hotels, professional sports, startups, a first-class medical school, nonprofits breaking barriers and local leaders taking the national stage by storm are just a sampling of the ways our community has advanced.

Whether we like it or not, the reputation of and confidence in our community is defined by the level of quality and excellence found in the professional endeavors, recreational activities and leadership we offer. If we want continued investment in quality of life, including education, culture and opportunity, we must produce. Because we all want El Paso to succeed and grow, we must continue to demand excellence from each other in every aspect of our lives.

In that spirit, Better Business Bureau Paso del Norte has launched its first BBB Awards for Excellence. The BBB’s mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust, which has a direct and positive impact on economic prosperity. As more businesses uphold standards of excellence, consumers will increasingly expect superior service and products.

We believe that by recognizing the best in business practices and service, everyone in our community will benefit. Consumers benefit from knowing what they should expect in terms of service and integrity, and businesses benefit from being challenged and learning from others.

We hope to grow this event and, more importantly, to find new ways to share the best of El Paso. Recognizing excellence serves as an acknowledgment of a job well done and as a challenge to others. As we have seen, competition is healthy. Excellence breeds excellence.

Please consider applying for one of the BBB Awards for Excellence by March 31 or nominate a business or employee that you believe is a stand-out by March 22. Award categories include Integrity, Customer Commitment, Resiliency, New Business, Nonprofit, Outstanding Employee and Gold Standard of Trust.

Help us celebrate and share what makes your business, or another’s, great. Finalists will be recognized and the winners announced at the BBB Awards for Excellence luncheon on May 15.

For information and applications, go online to

Marybeth Stevens has been the president of BBB Paso del Norte since December 2016. She is a graduate of Leadership Texas 2015.