Linfield, businesses create connections for future

Linfield opened up Ford Hall on Oct. 10 to host “Business After Hours,” a community networking event, to promote relations between McMinnville businesses and the college.

“Business After Hours” was semi-formal, social event staffed by members of the McMinnville chamber of commerce. Though historically not the norm, “Business After Hours” coupled as a fundraising event of “Partners in Progress.”

“‘Partners in Progress’ is a fundraising campaign for [Linfield] where local businesspeople come together to solicit funds from other businesses for Linfield and [the money raised] goes towards community recognized events on campus such as athletics, music and [scholarships,]” Dave Davison said.

Davison is a Linfield alumnus, part of the class of ’03 as well as a local business owner. Davison owns the Davison Auto Parts of McMinnville, a local Napa Auto Parts store.

College President Thomas L. Hellie gave a speech thanking the community business partners for their continued contributions to Linfield and illustrated some of the campus events that they, the business owners, were supporting. Events such as faculty lectures, nationally successful sports teams and an award winning theater department.

“When I talk to parents of prospective students, they often tell me that they hope that their child will choose Linfield because they are so taken by the town of McMinnville. They are so impressed by the restaurants and Third Street and really just the culture and quality and character of this town,” Hellie said.

Hellie also expressed his gratitude for Linfield’s being a part of the McMinnville community.

“Certainly, we are tremendous beneficiaries of living in such a progressive and interesting and important community in Oregon,” Hellie said.

“We are very proud to be part of the McMinnville Community and we are looking for more ways to partner with businesses in the McMinnville community,” Hellie said.

The event was concluded with a raffle with gift cards to a few local businesses as prizes.

Ryan Morgan / Senior reporter

Ryan Morgan can be reached at

Spencer Beck/Freelance photographer

Debbie Harmon (left,) director of alumni and parent relations, presents a McMinnville business owner with a gift card to Golden Valley
Brewery. Six other gift cards were handed out as raffle prizes to various audience members.