ABI and the Renovation of Des Moines City Hall - Monday Memo 3/28/16

March 28, 2016

ABI Office Impacted by Des Moines City Hall Relocation

Des Moines is renovating its City hall.  As you have read in previous editions of the Monday Memo, the building in which the ABI offices are located will soon become the site of the temporary Des Moines City Hall.  

As you can imagine, I have been in close touch with our landlord (ABI member R & R Realty) about the move and what it will mean for us as a tenant.  Here is the latest information, which I shared with ABI officers and staff last week.  By the way, this situation is fluid and ever-changing.  

Some departments of city government, such as the Legal Department, will begin the move to this building as of April 20.  The offices that draw a lot of traffic from the public will move to the building later in the spring, but all departments should be here by mid-summer.  The drop-off location for bills and fines will be through a new outside door-front to be constructed in the now-vacant offices roughly across from the restrooms nearest our office.  In response to my concerns about folks coming in to ABI by mistake, I am told that “a lot” of signage will be put in place to make sure that doesn’t happen. 

Perhaps my primary concern is parking.  The City is paying for a great deal of parking and most likely, the lot directly in front of the ABI office will be quite full most of the time. Our members and vendors who come to ABI will still be allowed to park in the lot if there are spaces open.  In addition, the lots to the east and across the street should still have spots available. 

The best news is that it is likely that a security guard will be put in place, at least for the first few months.  I strongly supported that move during my discussion with R & R officials and my hope would be that a security guard would help set a tone for citizens and others coming in to the building and with those who park here.  

The entire project is supposed to take 18 months (my view is that is overly-optimistic) and R & R promises “minimal disruptions” while construction is taking place to suit the City.  When more information is provided, I will be share and pass it on to you.  Should you have questions or concerns in the meantime, please contact me. 

ABI Executive Committee to Meet Next Week; Board Will Meet in May in Marshalltown

ABI Chair Paul Gregoire (Emerson/Fisher, Marshalltown) and members of the association’s Executive Committee will meet by teleconference next week.  The April EC call takes place the morning of April 6 and committee members can expect to see the usual packet of meeting materials in their email in-basket later this week. 

As for the ABI Board of Directors, that body will meet again next month, on May 4.  The meeting will be held at Emerson/Fisher in Marshalltown.  

And, if you come over the night before, join your fellow ABI members for dinner, compliments of ABI.  See you in Marshalltown on May 4 and/or 5. 

Convention Sponsorships Going Fast

As you know, ABI's 113th Annual Convention, the 2016 Taking Care of Business Conference, will be held in Sioux City in June.  You can click here http://www.cvent.com/events/2016-annual-abi-conference/event-summary-9223d9ff385a486fabd62938fbfd74d2.aspx to register or to find more information.  

Related to the convention, sponsorship opportunities are now being reserved and they are going fast.  The convention just gets bigger and better each year and sponsors want to be a part of Iowa’s most important business networking event.  You can find sponsorship information on the convention website, but you can always contact ABI directly with your questions or comments.  Thank you to all of the many companies who have already made their sponsorship reservations! 

Leadership Iowa Class to Converge on Council Bluffs Next Week

The 2015-2016 Class of the ABI Foundation’s Leadership Iowa program has been another in a string of terrific groups.  Class members have been strongly engaged in the LI sessions and they will have an opportunity to come together again next week. 

Beginning with an informal session next Wednesday evening, the class will convene in Council Bluffs through Friday, April 8.  This session will focus on public safety issues facing our state.  A wonderful slate of speakers has been developed to address the LI class.  Look for a full report at the next meeting of the ABI Board of Directors.  

Next Month: Biennial ABI Program to Create a Drug-Free Workplace

As you have read in the past couple of editions of this memorandum, the biennial ABI program designed to help you and your employees create a drug free workplace will soon be held.  The 2016 edition will be held on April 27 at the ABI office in Des Moines.  

Your HR staff will find the latest in rulings, best practice-sharing, and other items related to drug testing at the meeting.  The registration link for the conference should be available this week.  Please check ABI's events page soon for details: https://www.iowaabi.org/events/

April ABI Connecting Leaders Event Next Week

The next ABI Connecting Statewide Leaders event will be held April 7 in Council Bluffs.  ABI leaders and Advisory Council members will lead this high-value program.  The event will bring together ABI members, local business people, Leadership Iowa class members/alums, and others to discuss issues and interact with each other.  

Use this link to register for the event: http://www.cvent.com/events/connecting-statewide-leaders/event-summary-48cb87e43d8443598b407064e551233f.aspx.  These events have proven incredibly successful and have resulted in real membership growth for ABI.  See you in Council Bluffs next week. 

U.S. Attorneys' Cybersecurity Roundtables Day After Tomorrow

If you haven't yet registered for the events hosted by Kevin Techau, U. S. Attorney for the Northern District of Iowa, and Kevin VanderSchel, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa, there is still time to do so.  The events are cybersecurity roundtables to be held at Iowa State University in Ames and Drake University in Des Moines. 

The roundtables will be held this Wednesday, March 30th.  You are invited to attend one of the roundtables at no cost.  To learn more, reply to this memo and I will get you details and registration information. 

Last ABI Day Friday for Mary Mendenhall-Core; Development Director Search Continues

With Mary Mendenhall-Core soon leaving for a new position, ABI is searching for a new Development Director for the Foundation.  If you have folks you believe would make a strong addition to the ABI staff, please tell them about the position.  You can find more information by clicking on this link to the job description for the post: http://bit.ly/1RTY18j

In the meantime, Mary's final day as a member of the ABI staff is the coming Friday, April 1.  We thank Mary for her service and we wish her all the best. 

Get Real-Time Updates from ABI Via Twitter

ABI members tell me all the time how much they value the up-to-the-minute news they receive from ABI.  Quite a few ABI staffers tweet information all day long.  

At this time of the year, the real-time updates from the ABI Public Policy team of Nicole Crain, Jessica Harder, and Myron Linn are particularly valuable.  You can get news AS IT IS HAPPENING directly from the floor of the General Assembly or from a committee room.   As you know, Nicole was last year ranked as one of Iowa's top tweeters for business news by the Des Moines Register

If you are already familiar with Twitter, follow Nicole, Jessica, Myron, Emily Schettler, Kathy Anderson, Kay Neumann-Thomas, me, and various ABI and ABI Foundation program feeds.  If you aren't a tweeter or need assistance, just reply to this email and we'll get you set up. 

Nominate Students for Leadership Iowa, LI University, and Business Horizons

In recent editions of this memorandum, I have been reminding you that this is the time of year to make nominations for ABI Foundation programs.  That invitation includes nominations for Leadership Iowa University. 

Leadership Iowa University is the newest ABI Foundation program and it recently completed another very successful year.  LIU provides Iowa college students (public or private colleges, community colleges, etc.) with programming related to opportunities for them in Iowa and how they can plan for their future right here in Iowa.  

LIU – and Leadership Iowa and Business Horizons – all need your nominations.  It’s easy to nominate and you can do so by going to https://www.iowaabi.org/abi-foundation/about/ and clicking on the program links.  Thank you in advance for nominating participants for each of these three important programs. 

ABI Members Can Golf at Two Fantastic Courses in the Weeks Ahead; Conference Outing June 15; Executive Open August 29

You'll have the opportunity to play two of the Midwest's great golf courses in the coming months.  Dakota Dunes is one of the very best golf courses in the Midwest and is a favorite of golfers from all over the country.  Dakota Dunes is the site of the ABI Conference Golf Outing on June 15.  

You will also have the opportunity to play the gorgeous Des Moines Golf and Country Club in West Des Moines, one of Iowa's most exclusive private golf clubs.  This fall, the association will host the eighth annual Executive Open at the club.  A huge crowd is expected for the event, which routinely sells-out.  Please mark your calendars for August 29 and make plans to join your ABI colleagues for a terrific time. 

Sioux City Venues for 2016 Iowa Taking Care of Business Conference are Spectacular

Every year at this time, I admit to being given to a bit of hyperbole when describing things related to the annual conference.  In my own defense, however, every year I am right. 

ABI Chair Paul Gregoire (Emerson/Fisher, Marshalltown), members of the conference planning committee, chaired by Kim Didier (DMACC, Ankeny), and several of us on staff have made many visits to Sioux City and you will be amazed at the venues to be experienced there.  The area is simply beautiful. 

From the new Hard Rock Hotel and Casino and other great hotels, to the refurbished convention complex, to the great restaurants, and to sites all over the region, you will be enchanted.  Use the link noted previously and register now for the annual conference.

NW Iowa Elevate Ambassador Training

On April 13th  from 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Northwest Iowa Community College(NCC) is hosting an Elevate Ambassador training at its Sheldon campus. The training will be followed by a free networking lunch. Come learn how you can be part of the manufacturing workforce skills-gap solution. 

ABI members in the areas will want to participate in this high-energy, fun event.  Please RSVP by April 7th by calling Lesa Stofferan at 1-800-352-4907 ext. 195 or email her at lstofferan@nwicc.edu.

Rick Tollakson to be CRE Forum Panelist; Named CRE Professional of the Year

ABI Board Member Rick Tollakson (Hubbell Realty Company, West Des Moines) has led his company to a leading position in commercial real estate, development, and construction.  He is a frequent speaker at events focused on those industries. 

For the second consecutive year, Rick will be sharing his expertise as a panelist at the annual Des Moines Business Record Commercial Real Estate Trends and Issues Forum.  The 2016 forum will be held April 20 in Urbandale.  Go to http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?m=1102534574124&ca=01b2d7f3-b5da-4bce-8871-bbd70d43e782 for more information and to register. 

While we congratulate Rick on again serving as a panelist, we congratulate him even more for being named the CRE Professional of the Year. Click on the same link above and scroll down to learn more about Rick and this prestigious honor.  ABI salutes and congratulates Rick Tollakson!  

Roger Hargens Named Advanced Manufacturing Leader by NACFAM

ABI Board and Executive Committee Member Roger Hargens (Accumold, Ankeny) was recently named the winner of the Advanced Manufacturing Leadership Award for a Mid-Sized Company CEO by the National Council for Advanced Manufacturing.  This is a terrific honor and well-deserved by Roger, whose leadership has resulted in incredible growth for Accumold.  ABI salutes and congratulates Roger Hargens! 

Charese Yanney Suffers Fall; has Successful Surgeries

Former ABI Chair Charese Yanney (Guarantee Roofing and Siding, Sioux City) recently suffered a serious fall, one of the dangers of her profession.  As a result, Charese was taken by ambulance to Clarkson Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska.  Charese has had  a couple of surgeries and they were successful.  She is now on the mend and we send her our thoughts and prayers for strong recovery. 

Sadler Named Better Business Board Chair

Longtime ABI Board Member Michael Sadler (CenturyLink, Des Moines) was recently elected Chair of the Board of Directors of the Better Business Bureau of Greater Des Moines.  Michael will chair the board through all of 2016.  

In fact, every BBB officer represents an ABI-member company.  The Vice Chair of the BBB Board is former ABI Conference Committee Chair Dusky Terry (CIPCO, Des Moines).  The Past Chair is longtime ABI member Jim Slife (Pioneer Communications, Des Moines) and the Board Treasurer is Jill Jensen-Welch (Dickinson Law Firm, Des Moines).  Congratulations to Michael, Dusky, Jim, and Jill! 

Senator Ernst, Legislators Tour Plastics Professionals in Atlantic

As you have heard often from those of us on the ABI staff, one of the best things you can do as an ABI member is to have elected officials tour your facility.  Thankfully, many of you do just that and longtime ABI Board Member John Krogman (Connect-A-Dock, Atlantic) shared the most recent example. 

Last Thursday afternoon, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst, State Senator Tom Shipley, and State Representative Tom Moore toured Plastics Professionals' (Connect-A-Dock's sister company) Atlantic plant.  Senator Ernst called Plastics Professionals one of Iowa's hidden jewels.  reply to this message if you wish to see examples of the media coverage of the visit.  Thanks for bringing the officials into the plant, John and congratulations on the great press! 

Lori Thielen's Sister Has Lung Transplant

ABI Board member Lori Thielen (EDSB, Dubuque) is with her sister, Carol.  Carol recently underwent lung transplant surgery in Madison, Wisconsin.  Lori reports the surgery was successful and her sister is on the road to recovery.  That's good news!  Our thoughts and prayers with Lori and Carol and their family. 

Roger Bell, Husband of Jane Bell, Passes

ABI learned late last week of the untimely passing of Roger Bell.  Roger was the husband of former longtime ABI Board Member Jane Bell (Ameristar Casino, Council Bluffs).  Roger's services were held last week in Atlantic, where he and Jane have lived for many years.  Our hearts go out to Jane and she and her family are in our thoughts and prayers. 

Bill Zinkewich Checks In After Viewing ABI Vitale Video

Many of you will well recall former longtime ABI Board Member Bill Zinkewich (SSAB, Muscatine).  Bill is now retired and residing in Florida, but he still keeps up to date on ABI activities.  He checked in last week after viewing the ABI/Dick Vitale promotional (thanks for watching it, Bill!), which he enjoyed.  

You, too, can see the video by clicking here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXVXG6-aGIE&feature=youtu.be.  Thanks for checking in, Bill!  ABI sends best wishes from Iowa! 

Denise Essman Celebrates

Former ABI Board Member Denise Essman (Essman Companies, Des Moines) is celebrating her birthday Thursday.  ABI sends happy birthday wishes to Denise!