ABI Celebrates Big Week - Monday Memo 1/17/22

January 17, 2022

ABI Holds Smash Legislative Briefing, Reception

Iowa Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg, the leadership of the Iowa General Assembly, dozens of legislators of both parties and chambers, statewide elected officials such Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller and Secretary of State Paul Pate, state department heads, and ABI members have shared great comments regarding the 2022 ABI Legislative Briefing and Reception held last week.  The crowd was large, with hundreds of people attending. 

Prior to the reception, the annual legislative briefing was highlighted by remarks by ABI Vice President Public Policy JD Davis, ABI Director Public Policy Brad Hartkopf, and ABI Executive Vice President Nicole Crain, and me. 

ABI members from every corner of the state and from many states outside Iowa were on hand to connect with state officials.  It is that interaction with legislators that is so vital and that makes the event such a critical component to advancing ABI’s agenda each year.  

By the way, while we appreciate the large crowd, what is more satisfying is the number of the attendees who say they conduct business and make important connections at the events.  Check the ABI website soon for photos from the event. 

In the meantime, many thanks for the good words you have shared about the event and for the work of ABI staff.  THANK YOU for making the 2022 ABI Legislative Briefing and Reception exceptional events.  

First ABI Legislative Teleconference of 2020 on the 21st

ABI's Public Policy team will hold 2022’s first monthly Zoom conference related to the work of the Iowa General Assembly this Friday.  The meeting will be held January 21 at 8:00 a.m.  The Zoom conferences typically last about 30 minutes and you and your employees are invited to participate.  Please click here for more information about the call, free and open to ABI members only: Register now at Legislative Update (Members Only) | Iowa Association of Business and Industry (iowaabi.org).  By the way, thank you to Immediate Past ABI Chair Steven Bradford (HNI Corporation, Muscatine), who noted the error on the date in last week’s Memo.  As noted here, the correct date is the 21st, not the 22nd.  Thanks, Steven! 

Board Holds First Meeting of 2022

Members of the ABI Board of Directors met Wednesday.  ABI Chair Jack Hasken (Jackson Mfg., Maquoketa) led the board through a fast-paced meeting, which was the board's first of 2022.  Strong attendance and participation marked what was a great meeting of the board.  The meeting was followed by the annual legislative briefing and reception.  Thank you to all of you who joined us in Des Moines last week. 

March 8 Board Meeting Follows Business Day on the Hill

More information will be coming your way soon, but please remember that the March meeting will follow the annual Business Day on the Hill and ABI Luncheon.  In the meantime please mark your calendars to join your ABI colleagues in Des Moines on March 8. 

2022 ABI Convention Generating Buzz; Hotels Filling Fast

You know that the annual ABI Taking Care of Business Conference has been growing in terms of attendance and support for the past several years.  The upcoming meeting will be ABI's 119th Annual Meeting and it will be held June 14-16 in Dubuque.  

The 2022 conference is generating a lot of buzz, with people in Dubuque especially excited to host ABI members from all over Iowa.  At the conference, you will hear from terrific speakers and get great information.  And of course you will see Iowa's best business networking occur at this event. 

Work continues to ensure the conference is a fabulous event.  The flagship conference hotel, the Hotel Julien, is filling fast.  So is the Hotel at Grand Harbor Resort, and a third hotel maybe added to the conference lodging list.  For now, click here for more information and to register: http://www.iowaabi.org/events/annual-conference/.  By the way, the conference registration website will go live next month.  

Conference Workshops Being Finalized

Speaking of the annual conference, members often cite the conference workshops as a highlight.  These sessions, which cover a variety of topics to bring value to your business, will be held on the afternoon of June 15 in Dubuque.  Tomorrow and Wednesday, ABI conference planning committee members will meet with workshop presenters to ensure the sessions are again of top quality this year.  Look for more information when the conference agenda is posted to the ABI website next month.  Thank you to all involved. 

ABI Legislative Reception Photos Available Soon; Check Events Calendar

As noted above and thanks to you, the 2022 ABI Legislative Reception was a terrific event.  The event was incredibly successful and was an important part of advancing ABI’s public policy agenda for the year. 

Photographs will soon be posted to the ABI website (and more will be coming).  Please check them out here: http://www.iowaabi.org/events/photos/.  You might be in them!  

In the meantime, many of you have asked about upcoming events.  I encourage you to check the ABI events calendar often at http://www.iowaabi.org/events/ to see the extensive list of ABI meetings and events coming up in the next few weeks.  There is always a lot happening at ABI. 

Elevate Again Offering Community College Scholarships; Check for the Latest “Not a Dirty Job” Video

Each year, ABI’s Elevate Advanced Manufacturing initiative offers scholarships for Iowa high school students.  In 2022, Elevate is again offering 15 $500 scholarships to Iowa high school seniors interested in studying a manufacturing-related program of courses at one of Iowa’s community colleges.  One award is made per each of Iowa’s’ 15 community college regions.  

By the way, the latest in the “Not a Dirty Job” series of videos is out (the videos are great recruitment tools for your business and other ABI manufacturers) and it is another great piece.  It highlights ABI-member General Mills’ Carlisle, Iowa plant.  Congratulations to ABI Board Member Kellan Longenecker (General Mills, Carlisle) and her team for a great production! 

Go to the Elevate webpage at www.elevateiowa.com for more information about the scholarships and/or the videos.  Or simply reply to this message and I will get you more information at once.  In the meantime, special thanks to ABI Board Member Michele Farrell (Measured Intentions, Urbandale), who leads Elevate! 

Iowa STEM Advisory Council Partners on Externships

Over the last few years, several ABI member companies have participated in the externship program administered by the Iowa Governor's STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Advisory Council.  The externships are six-week terms for educators to get actual experience inside a business. 

The program helps educators by exposing them to practical experience in the business world.  It can help your company by gaining additional staff for a short period and by exposing educators to what their students will find when they graduate.  For more information, please go to this link: http://iowastem.gov/externships.  

NAM Report: Global Manufacturing Sill Growing (but More Slowly); Supply Chain Issues Easing?

Last week’s edition of the National Association of Manufacturers’ Global Manufacturing Economic Update document continued growth in global manufacturing.  However, the rate of growth slowed during the last half of last year. Other data seemed to suggest supply chain issues are on their way to resolution.  That’s good news. 

As always, there was a lot of other great information in the report.  If you wish to see the report for yourself, reply to this message and I’ll get it to you at once. 

ABI Members Highlighted in Sunday Register Article

Yesterday’s edition of the Des Moines Register carried a cover story about the ongoing workforce shortage in Iowa.  The focus was the impact of the shortage on Iowa manufacturers. 

Several ABI folks were quoted.  Former ABI Chair Dave Zrostlik (Stellar Industries, Garner), ABI Board Member Connor Deering (CemenTech, Indianola), Grace Swanson (Accumold, Ankeny), and Center for Industrial Research and Service Director Ron Cox (CIRAS, Ames) among them.  The Register site won’t let me link to the article, but congratulations to all involved for an interesting take on workforce in Iowa! 

Paul Gregoire and John Schreurs Mark Birthdays

Two more ABI leaders are marking birthdays.  Celebrating this month are former Fisher-Emerson executive/former ABI Chair Paul Gregoire and former Board Member John Schreurs (Strategic America, West Des Moines).  Happy birthday to Paul and John!