ABI Executive Forum Next Week - Monday Memo 7/24/23

July 24, 2023

ABI Okoboji Executive Forum Next Week; Great Program on Tap; Lt. Governor to Address Attendees

Please consider this information as another invitation for next week’s 2023 ABI Okoboji Executive Forum.  Click here for more information and to register: Summary - Executive Forum (Members Only) (cvent.com).  The forum will be held next Thursday and Friday August 3rd and 4th) in the Okoboji area.  Thursday afternoon’s events take place at the Arrowwood resort and Conference Center in Okoboji.  Thursday evening, we’ll be at former ABI Chair Toby Shine’s (Shine Bros. Corp., Spencer) fabulous Okoboji Classic Cars facility.  Friday morning, we’ll be back at the Arrowwood.  The forum starts with lunch on Thursday and ends Friday morning. 

Starting with lunch this Thursday, the forum will produce a terrific program.  Iowa Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg will provide an opening address and then the well-known business valuation panel of ABI Advisory Council members led by ABI Board Member Casey Cason (Wells Fargo, Des Moines) and Kevin Lentz (Anthologic, West Des Moines) will present an interesting session on business succession.  Next, a terrific panel of ABI leaders will share comments about their businesses.  This great panel includes Tim Bianco (Iowa Spring, Adel), Steve Jacobs (BCC Advisers, Des Moines), and Mary Landhuis (Lisle Corporation, Clarinda).  Keynote Speaker Ben McLean (Ruan, Des Moines) will speak next.  

At OCC that evening, ABI Board Member Nate Weaton (Weaton Companies, Fairfield) will share compelling remarks.  Friday morning, attendees will be addressed by longtime ABI Board Member and Lakes-Area Leader Bruce Tamisiea (Tecton Industries, Spencer).  As you can see, this is an exceptional program.  Join 70 other ABI leaders at the lakes later this month! 

Business Horizons 2023 Huge Success

As you read about in last week's edition of this memorandum, the 2023 session of the ABI Foundation's Business Horizons high school experience was held last week.  Dozens and dozens of students from all over Iowa converged on the campus of Drake University in Des Moines to participate in this terrific program.  

The week provided a fabulous experience for all involved. Making it so was another great group of students, terrific ABI members, and leaders.  BH 2023 was a huge success, with students and parents sharing praise for the curriculum and the connections made during the week.  

This program is simply a terrific event each year and it is possible only through the support of you, your company, and your employees.  Special thanks to the Foundation team of Jessi McQuerrey, Jane Galloway, and Kendall Antle, who spent the week at BH, for their terrific work in making BH a smash. 

Abby Schaefer Completes Work with ABI

Abby Schaefer, ABI’s Summer Intern, had her last day with us Friday.  Abby was an absolutely terrific staffer and is a great person in general.  She helped with administrative tasks, some finance tasks, and general duties.  We hope to get her back when possible.  Thank you to Abby, who is the daughter of Former ABI Chair Lori Schaefer Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield), and best of luck back at the University of Indiana! 

August ABI Executive Committee Teleconference Two Weeks from Wednesday; September Board Meeting to be Held in West Des Moines

Members of the ABI Executive Committee will convene for their monthly Zoom meeting on August 9.  ABI Vice Chair Chad Reece (Winnebago Industries, Forest City) and committee members will work through a full agenda in advance of the next meeting of the ABI Board of Directors. 

As you know, the first ABI Board Meeting of the 2023-2024 fiscal year will be held on September 13.  It will be held at 1:00 p.m. in West Des Moines, at Des Moines Golf and Country Club.  You will not want to miss it!  Please mark your calendars now and finalize your plans to participate in this important meeting.  

September Board Meeting Preceded by Economic Forecast Luncheon at Des Moines Golf and Country Club

As you read above, the ABI Board of Directors will meet at 1:00 p.m. at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in West Des Moines.  The board meeting will be preceded by an Economic Forecast Luncheon (presented by ABI member Security National Bank) that will provide the latest information and analysis regarding the state of the economy.  You can find more information and register for the luncheon here: Summary - What is the Future of the Economy? Presented by Security National Bank of Iowa (cvent.com).  I hope you can attend the luncheon and then move across the hall for the ABI board meeting. 

Leadership Iowa University to Begin in Two Weeks

Two weeks from yesterday, on August 6, talented Iowa college students will assemble for the annual session of the ABI Foundation’s Leadership Iowa University program.  Students come from Iowa’s public universities, private colleges, and from community colleges and all will learn about our state and ways they can impact its future.  LIU class programs have received rave reviews from students, college officials, ABI leaders, and others.  

Policy Development Meetings Start Next Month

Along with other changes made to ABI's award-winning public policy advocacy work, our association has advanced the annual policy development process.  This extra time allows ABI members and staff to further engage legislators and other state officials in issues important to Iowa employers.  In keeping with that change, the annual policy development meetings will be held next month.  The ABI Environment Committee will kick things off on August 1.  

Regarding each of the committees, dozens of members have already registered for these important meetings.  If you haven't already done so, there is still plenty of time for you and your employees to register.  ABI members may participate free of charge.  Simply go to https://www.iowaabi.org/events/ to register for the committee meetings of interest to you.  The ABI Board of Directors will act on the policy recommendations at the September board meeting. 

New Board Member Orientations Continue This Week

Ask any ABI staff member about one of the best perks of their job and they will cite the opportunity to tour so many Iowa manufacturing and business operations.  That is typically one of the best things about the annual orientation sessions with newly-elected board members.    

In the meantime, the orientation process continues throughout July and August.  Thank you to these newly-elected ABI Board Members for their time and service: Katie Hall (Cargill, Clive), Sarah James (Principal, Des Moines), Dustin Katje (Pella Corporation, Carroll), Kelly McGriff (HNI Corporation, Muscatine), Casey Mills (Mills-Shellhammer-Puetz & Associates, Sioux City), Brad Nielsen (Iowa America Water Company, Davenport), Kelli O’Brien (Union Pacific, Omaha), Chip Reeves (MidWestOne, Iowa City), and Andrew Schriner (Lumen, Des Moines.  You will have an opportunity to meet the new board members at a future meeting. 

Annual ABI Executive Open in Five Weeks

Register now for the annual ABI Executive Open Best Ball, which will be held five weeks from today, on August 28, at the beautiful Glen Oaks Country Club in West Moines.  One of the nation’s most beautiful clubs, Glen Oaks provides an exceptional playing experience.  Learn more about Glen Oaks CC here: Glen Oaks Country Club (glenoakscc.com).   

Golf, networking, and a reception will highlight the day.  To register right now for the remaining spots, go to Summary - Executive Open (cvent.com).  We look forward to seeing you at the Executive Open again this year! 

NAM Report:  Manufacturing/Economic Data Trending Mostly Positive

The news in last week’s National Association of ManufacturersMonday Economic Report was mostly positive.  While the closely-followed ISM Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index indicated contraction, other data related to inflation, consumer sentiment, and small business optimism (among other things) were showing improvement.  There was other great information included in the report, as there is every week.  If you wish to read the report for yourself, please reply to this memo and I’ll get it to you at once. 

Collins Aerospace Celebrates Expansion

A great ABI member company celebrated a big development last week.  It was fun to be in West Des Moines Thursday to see the ribbon cut on the expansion of the Collins Aerospace additive manufacturing plant there.  The expanded plant will significantly increase the company’s capabilities related to engine nozzle production for military and commercial aircraft. 

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and other dignitaries, including former ABI Chair Cindy Dietz (Collins Aerospace, Cedar Rapids), were on hand to mark the occasion.  The $14 million expansion has already led to new technology installations and other things making the plant one of its kind across the globe.  Congratulations to Cindy and everyone at Collins Aerospace on this fabulous new addition! 

Side note: It was fun to run into former ABI Board Member Mike Tousley (The Weitz Company, Des Moines) at the event.  Weitz built the expanded manufacturing facility. 

Jim Tyler Marks 74 Years with Atlantic Bottling

It was fun to read in the latest edition of The Fizz, the newsletter published by longtime ABI member Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, that one’s of its employees hit the 74-year mark in employment.  As you might have guessed the employee is none other than former ABI Chair Jim Tyler(Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Atlantic).  Congratulations on this incredible milestone, Jim! 

Claudia Schabel Named Woman of Influence

Inside the current edition of the Des Moines Business Record, the newspaper lists several women that deemed Women of Influence.  An ABI board member is one of those honored.  Congratulations to ABI Board Member Claudia Schabel (Schabel Solutions, Des Moines), who was named a Woman of Influence for 2023!  

Steffi Lee Joins Denton’s Davis Brown

Speaking of fun reads, it was a pleasure to read some news in the latest edition of the Iowa State Bar Association’s Iowa Lawyer magazine.  That is that former ABI intern Steffi Lee Dwyer has joined a great ABI member law firm, Denton’s Davis Brown, as an associate litigation attorney.  Steffi, who graduated from Drake University Law School with high honors, was a terrific part of the ABI team while she was with us.  Read more about Steffi here: Dentons - Steffi Lee Dwyer.  We wish Steffi all the best!