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Business Digest: May 8, 2022 | Local

New development director at heart association

The American Heart Association has named Nicolette Billups as the corporate development director for Longview and Tyler.

Nicolette Billups

Billups brings 20 years of health care marketing experience to the role that puts her in charge of the Tyler Heart Ball, Tyler Go Red for Women Luncheon, Longview Go Red for Women and local health and education initiatives. She most recently managed marketing efforts for UT Health East Texas.

Billups served in volunteer roles for the AHA. She started her full-time position in March and was instrumental in putting on the recent Tyler Go Red for Women Luncheon.

“I’m well acquainted with the important, life-saving work of the AHA in this region and look forward to working in this leadership role during an important time in the history of the organization,” she said. “The Association will be 100 years old in 2024, and we have a hefty health equity goal, which is to advance cardiovascular health for all, including identifying and removing barriers to health care access and quality.”

Billups grew up in Tyler. She and her husband, Neal, have two sons — Cole, 7, and Lane, 5. She has a bachelor’s degree in business administration in marketing from the University of Texas at Tyler.

Job fair scheduled at Jarvis Christian

Jarvis Christian University and Workforce Solutions of East Texas will host a job fair for the public 9 a.m. to noon May 24 in the Mirror Room of the E.W. Rand Center Gymnasium on the Jarvis campus at U.S. 89 East at PR 7631 in Hawkins.

Representatives from all industries are hiring, including warehousing, manufacturing, retail trade, daycare centers, law enforcement, real estate rental and leasing, restaurants, hotels and staffing services. Contact 1-844-ETWorks or go to for more information. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. Deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech-impaired customers may contact Relay Texas 800-735-2989 (TTY) and 711 (voice).

Westlake Corp. logs record sales

Westlake Corp., which operates a facility in Longview, reported quarter net income of $756 million for the first quarter of 2022, with record net sales of almost $4.1 billion. First quarter income compares to $514 million a year ago.

“The increase in net income of $514 million was driven by significantly higher sales prices and margins across most of our businesses as well as the contributions of the new businesses acquired in the second half of 2021 and early 2022,” the company reported. “The continuing strength of residential construction driven by solid repair and remodeling markets drove strong demand and pricing dynamics for PVC resin as well as demand for a majority of offerings in the housing and infrastructure products segment. Additionally, the performance and essential materials segment experienced robust strength in polyethylene for packaging and consumer markets, epoxy coatings and applications, as well as caustic soda benefitting from increasing industrial activity, resulting in higher prices and margins. Despite rising feedstock costs and logistical constraints, margins expanded with pricing increases outpacing rising production costs.”

Westlake’s board of directors also declared a distribution of 47.14 cents per unit payable on May 26 to unit holders of record on May 12.

Sales up at EnPro Industries in Longview

EnPro Industries, which includes Stemco in Longview, saw sales climb 17.7% in the first quarter.

Net income was down from $18 million a year ago to $16.2 million this quarter. Sales were $328.7 million.

EnPro also declared a quarterly dividend of 28 cents per share, payable June 15 to shareholders of record on June 1.

Sysco Corp. approves 2-cent bump in divident

Sysco Corp. approved a 2-cent increase in the quarterly cash dividend to 49 cents per share from the current 47 cents per share.

The new dividend is payable for the first time on July 22 to common stockholders of record at the close of business on July 1.

Eastman Chemical Co. revenue, profits increase

Kingsport, Tennessee-based Eastman Chemical Co., which is one of Longview’s largest employers, reported higher revenues and profits for the first quarter of 2022. 

Sales revenues were more than $2.7 billion in the first quarter, compared with about $2.41 billion a year ago. Net profit was $236 million, up from $277 million a year ago.

The company’s board of directors also declared a quarterly cash dividend of 76 cents per share on the company’s common stock, payable July 8 to stockholders of record on June 15. 

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