Many of the earliest business and professional women's club grew out of the Young Women's Christian Association or the YWCA. There were, however, a number of independent business women's clubs throughout the United States before the founding of the National Federation of Business and Professional Women. The U.S. government and the events of World War I provided the catalyst for bringing these clubs together under the umbrella of a federation. The YWCA organized a number of meetings and decided to found a federation of business and professional women clubs. A representative from the YWCA traveled to Texas to survey the existing clubs and encourage them to meet to elect delegates to go to St. Louis July 14-18, 1919, for the purpose of founding a national federation. Representatives from Texas business women's clubs in El Paso, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, and Austin attended a meeting on July 12, 1919, at the Adolphus Hotel in Dallas, Texas. After electing the delegates, a constitutional committee was appointed and Dr. Minnie Maffett of Dallas was elected president of the Texas Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs. As a result of the St. Louis meeting, the National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs was formed July 15, 1919.
The Federation was especially active in the passing of the Equal Rights Amendment of 1972 in Texas, led by Hermine Tobolowsky. The TFBPW has established many funds and scholarships that encourage education and employment among women. The TFBPW supports two scholarship funds, Minnie L. Maffett Scientific Fellowship Fund and the Mary Lilyerstrom Foreign Scholarship, that give money to deserving women for the pursuit of higher education. They also supported the state funding for the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and continue to support the Cancer Center through the Chloe Monroe M.D. Anderson Fund and a scholarship (Past State President's Award). The mission of the Texas Federation of Business and Professional Women is to achieve equity for all women in the workplace through advocacy, education and information.