The Hilliard Business Alliance launched a membership drive at its first meeting Nov. 12 at the law firm of Willis and Willis, 4653 Trueman Blvd.
"We want to be a vehicle for cooperation among all Hilliard business owners and civic organizations," said Stan Willis, host of the gathering and secretary of the new group.
Hilliard City Councilman Nathan Painter, a private-practice attorney with a Hilliard office, was the guest speaker at the meeting, which about 30 people attended.
Painter, chairman of City Council's economic development committee, outlined the various developments and projects in the city, including the Gateway at Hilliard development at Britton Parkway and Cemetery Road, a new senior center on Trueman Boulevard and Hilliard Station Park.
"The Hilliard Business Alliance will be an asset to the community and a value to its members," said Rob Fill, vice president of the Hilliard Business Alliance.
Carrie Stanley-Davis is the president of the group, and Sheryl Cox is the treasurer.
Willis said the alliance welcomes dual membership in its organization and the Hilliard Area Chamber of Commerce.
The alliance is not seeking to supplant the chamber, Willis said, but rather to provide Hilliard business owners with another opportunity to collaborate with city government, the school district and other community organizations.
Applications were distributed at the Nov. 12 meeting to begin building membership. Annual dues are $125.
Mel Sims, a Hilliard property owner and former operator of an Old Hilliard diner, said he was impressed with the initial offering.
"It's the best idea and effort I've seen (in the business community) in a while," Sims said.
Davis said, for now, the organization will meet quarterly. The next scheduled meeting is Feb. 25 with Hilliard Superintendent John Marschhausen as the guest speaker.
The organization also will schedule quarterly social events, including a "fifth Thursday" after-work gathering, the first of which is scheduled Jan.30.
For more information about the Hilliard Business Alliance, visit hilliardbusinessalliance.com or call 614-876-1224.