ABI Exec Committee Meets Next Week - Monday Memo 7/5/16

July 5, 2016

Executive Committee Teleconference Next Week

The ABI Executive Committee will hold its July teleconference  a week from tomorrow.  ABI Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield) and members of the committee will hold what is typically a brief meeting, but one which includes a full agenda of reports and action items.  News regarding any developments will be a part of the September meeting of the ABI Board of Directors. 

New Board Member Orientations to Begin Soon; ABI Board Will Meet in September

Orientation sessions with new members of the ABI Board of Directors will soon be underway.  A terrific group of new board members was elected to the board in June and they join an already strong group of Iowa business leaders.  

Thank you to the new members for their commitment to the association.  The new members will join you for the first time at the next meeting of the board, which is set for Wednesday, September 14.  

At the September meeting, which will mark the first meeting of the board for the fiscal year, ABI will officially welcome new association board members.  Elected to the board for terms beginning July 1 were Christine Carlson (Hillphoenix Specialty Products,Keosauqua), Michele Farrell (Measured Intentions, Clive), Alan Johnson (Norplex Micarta, Postville), Drew Larson (RAM Pattern, LeClaire), Kellan Longenecker (General Mills, Carlisle), Vince Newendorp (Vermeer Corporation, Pella), David Nicholl (Grip Tite Mfg Co., Winterset), and Kim Pang (Diamond Jo Worth, Northwood), and the honorary Leadership Iowa board member, Kelli Barrick (The Private Bank, West Des Moines). 

Plan Now to Participate in Annual Policy Development Process

As you know, ABI has significantly stepped-up its award-winning public policy programming.  Already recognized for years as one of Iowa's most effective public policy organizations, ABI this year dramatically increased events (held throughout Iowa), added new events, and altered its annual policy development process to increase its impact. 

To that end, the association's annual policy committee meetings have already been scheduled.  Please go to the ABI Events Calendar at http://www.iowaabi.org/events/ to register for the committee meetings of interest to you and your employees.  The ABI Board of Directors will act on the recommendations of these committees at the September board meeting. 

Business Horizons 2016 in Two Weeks

As you have read about in recent editions of this memorandum, the 2016 session of the ABI Foundation's Business Horizons high school experience will kick-off later this month.  Plans are being finalized to ensure the annual program is another smashing success.  

BH 2016 will be held on the campus of Central College in Pella July 17-21.  This exciting program continues to help Iowa high school students understand that a successful future is theirs for the making right here in Iowa.  Go to www.businesshorizonsiowa.com and learn more about Business Horizons.  

There are still vacancies left and registrations are still being taken, so please nominate your BH students now.  By the way, scholarships are also available, so there is no reason a student cannot participate.  Again, nominate your employee's student family members now. 

Mark Your Calendars for Eighth Annual ABI Executive Open August 29

For the past few years, ABI has held a golf event to promote member programs and to thank members for their support and participation.  The event has proven incredibly popular.  The eighth annual event will be held Monday, August 29.  The past three events have sold-out and we expect that will be the case again this year.  Join us for golf and for an afternoon of fun and networking. 

The ABI Executive Open will again be held at Des Moines Gold and Country Club in West Des Moines, one of Iowa's most exclusive private clubs.  This is a fabulous course and registration is now open for this always-great event.  Please click on http://www.cvent.com/events/abi-executive-open-2016/event-summary-78ef26d7ecd4489696463f1d84494bd2.aspx to register now.  See you at Des Moines Golf in August! 

Conference Survey Reminder; View Photos Online

Many of you have been great to share very positive feedback from last month’s 113th Annual ABI Taking Care of Business Conference.  We appreciate that, but we are always looking for constructive criticism as well, so please know that your feedback of any kind is important. to us. 

Remember that the 2016 Convention Survey is ready for your attention.  Click here: http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07ecuq1wljippqd4tq/start to take the survey.  And be sure and view the photos from the conference (you might be in them!):  www.iowaabi.org/events/photos.   Again, thank you for your participation and assistance in helping make the 2016 ABI Convention a terrific success. 

Doing Business with China, Viet Nam Subject of Upcoming Meetings

ABI members do business all over the world.  Southeast Asia, in particular, has received a great deal of attention due to the size of its marketplace.  In July, Des Moines is the center of activity related to two countries in the region, China and Viet Nam. 

Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie established a task force to develop economic exchange between Des Moines and its Chinese Sister City, Shijiazhuang.  ABI member company representatives and ABI Vice President Member Development and Programs Kathy Anderson have been involved in the task force.  The task force is now compiling information about investment and opportunities for cooperation between the two cities.  If your company is interested in exploring business relationships in Shijiazhuang, please contact Kathy at (515) 235-0575. 

In addition to China, Viet Nam is also a focus.  Ambassador of Vietnam to the U.S. Pham Quang Vinh will be in Des Moines later this month.  The Office of Iowa Governor Terry Branstad is arranging a meeting with the Ambassador for companies interested in facilitating business between Viet Nam and Iowa.  if you desire further information, please contact ABI Senior Vice President Public Policy Nicole Crain at (515) 235-0566, or me.  

TechWorks Again in the News

The TechWorks Campus, a 30-acre advanced manufacturing and bio-research center in the heart of Waterloo (http://cedarvalleyalliance.com/cms/251/Cedar_Valley_Tech_Works, is well-known to members of the ABI Board of Directors.  The board toured TechWorks after its May, 2015 meeting. 

TechWorks was again in the news last week, with a feature in the Waterloo Courier.  Read the story for yourself here: http://wcfcourier.com/business/local/techworks-design-center-holds-open-house/article_2ec0874c-f527-55c2-b2ca-d7773ac604a9.html.  Congratulations to everyone at TechWorks, including ABI Board Member Steve Dust (Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, Waterloo)!