ESTABLISHED in 1964 by brothers Bill and Peter Dougherty as a finance company to help people buy whitegoods and other big-ticket household items, Westlawn has grown to be a multimillion-dollar institution that has branches all over the North Coast.
The company began extending its services to become a full local finance company in the early ’70s when Bill and Peter’s cousin, Mike Doughtery, entered the fold.
From there the company continued to diversify, moving into the property sector with the acquisition and development of commercial real estate.
Of course, family has always been at the centre of Westlawn’s philosophy, including the extended members of the team in their loyal staff.
A number of second-generation Doughertys actively work in the Westlawn Group. Jim Dougherty, one of Bill’s sons, joined in 1993 and is now chairman of Westlawn Finance and chairman of the Westlawn Property Trust.
Mark Dougherty, one of Peter’s sons, joined Westlawn in 1996, is a director of Westlawn Finance and has previously held the position of managing director of the finance division.
Sarah Dougherty, one of Mark’s sisters, also works in the finance division.
In addition, Chris Dougherty, one of Mike’s sons, is general manager of Westlawn Insurance Brokers.
After serving as chairman for many years, Mike Doughtery retired from the Westlawn board in October 2017. (Mike took out No.23 in
The Daily Examiner’s inaugural Power 30 that year, while his cousin Bill took out No.2).
Westlawn is one of the family business success stories of the Clarence Valley.
The respected company, now simply called Westlawn, is a competitive operator across various investment and lending platforms as well as providing a complete range of financial services and advice.
The award-winning business prides itself on its Clarence beginnings, employing a large team of local staff and providing various support and sponsorships across an enormous number of community organisations and events, from the Jacaranda Festival and Casino’s Beef Week to the popular July Racing Carnival kickstarter Westlawn Prelude Day.