Final FY20 Executive Committee Meeting on Tap - Monday Memo 6/22/20

June 22, 2020

Executive Committee Meets Wednesday

The monthly meeting of the ABI Executive Committee will take place the day after tomorrow.  ABI Chair Cindy Dietz (Collins Aerospace, Cedar Rapids) will convene the meeting by Zoom starting at 9:30 that morning.  

The meeting, which will mark the final meeting of the fiscal year, has a full agenda.  In addition to the usual operational reports, the committee will hear a review of the 2020 session of the Iowa General Assembly, act on a recommendation related to association accounting and CPA services – and special thanks to ABI Vice Chair Steven Bradford (HNI Corporation, Muscatine) and Immediate Past Chair David Bywater (Bankers Advertising/Tru Art, Iowa City) for their help with this matter – and hear the results of the work of the ABI Nominating Committee. 

As for the ABI Board of Directors, it has begun its summer hiatus.  The board will meet again on September 10 in Indianola.  Watch for more news soon. 

Next Monday: ABI 2020 Annual Business Meeting

In keeping with the association’s bylaws and in accordance with state law, ABI is required each year to hold an annual business meeting of members.  Two important functions are required at that meeting.  The first is to approve the minutes of the previous annual meeting and the second is to elect directors of the association.  

For the first time in ABI’s 117-year history, the annual meeting will be conducted electronically.  All ABI members were mailed official notice of the meeting last Friday.  The vote itself will take place a week from today, on Monday, June 29.  Voting will open at 10:00 in the morning and be closed at 4:00 that afternoon. It is expected that ABI members will approve the minutes of the 2019 annual meeting and adopt the slate of board candidates proposed by the Nominating Committee. 

Also in keeping with ABI bylaws and state law, the board will elect the officers of the association.  That will take place in a separate email message to board members only.  That message will be distributed a week from tomorrow, on Tuesday, June 30.  These actions will allow ABI to begin its new fiscal year on Wednesday, July 1 in full compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. 

Thank you in advance for your attention to these important matters. 

Nominating Committee Completes Work

The work of the ABI Nominating Committee is some of the most important undertaken each year.  This year was no exception, as the committee worked hard to develop a terrific slate of board members and officers for consideration by association members.  I can tell you committee members were successful in that regard. 

The committee is chaired each year by the association’s Immediate Past Chair.  Thus, David Bywater (Bankers Advertising/Tru Art, Iowa City) led the committee in 2020. In addition to David, members of the Committee include ABI board members from each of the association's five state districts.  They are District 1 – Andy Kretz (Dexter Apache Holdings, Fairfield), District 2 - Rich Phelan (LyondellBasell, Clinton), District 3 - Stacey Pellett (John Deere, Johnston), District 4 - Kellan Longenecker (General Mills, Avon), and District 5 - Larry Countryman (Wilson Trailer, Sioux City).  Thank you to these ABI leaders for their help and service. 

Mark Your Calendars: ABI Foundation Auction will be Online with Virtual Events held the Week of July 20

This year the ABI Foundation will hold its annual auction that benefits the Leadership Iowa, Leadership Iowa University and Business Horizons programs the week of July 20. The auction is typically a big event following the Chair’s Dinner during the ABI Conference.  Since the conference could not be held this year, Foundation leaders have come up with a terrific way for you to connect during this time.  There are outstanding Iowa-made products that will be featured for the auction.  More details – the theme, auction items, event registrations – will be coming soon, but be sure to mark your calendars now to participate. 

In the meantime, THANK YOU all involved! Thank you to ABI Foundation Chair Kim Butler Hegedus (Community State Bank, Ankeny), and former ABI Chair and Foundation Board Member Lori Schaefer Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics, Fairfield), and Leadership Iowa Board Members Alyson Fleming (Iowa Finance Authority, Des Moines) and Gina David (Through It All Marketing + Consulting, West Des Moines).  Should you have questions or comments, please contact ABI Foundation Vice President Rebecca Coady at

First Executive Committee Meeting of New Fiscal Year in Two Weeks

As mentioned, the ABI Board of Directors will hold its first meeting of FY21 on September 10.  As for the Executive Committee, incoming ABI Chair Steven Bradford (HNI Corporation, Muscatine) will call to order the first FY21 meeting on July 7  Committee members should watch for the usual packet of meeting materials to arrive in your email in-basket sometime next week. 

ABI Pre-Employment Testing Process Seminar August 19

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ABI’s biennial Pre-Employment Testing Process Seminar had to be rescheduled.  That event will now be held at ABI on Wednesday, August 19.  

A good crowd has already registered for this popular seminar and your HR and risk-management teams will find value in the information shared through this event.  Expert speakers and the latest information about best practices and current trends will be shared.  Register now at:  

Plan Now for Regional Policy Meetings, August Policy Committee Meetings

While ABI is still celebrating the recent adjournment of another successful Iowa legislative session, the association is already deep into planning for next year’s session.  Watch for news of a revised regional policy meeting schedule to come your way soon. 

In the meantime, work will soon shift to the annual policy committee meetings to be held in August.  Through the annual policy meetings, literally hundreds of ABI members will come together to shape the public policy agenda for the association for 2021.  You and your employees are key to the success of these meetings and it is not too early to get the meeting dates on your calendar.  Click here for more information or to register:

As always, you as board members will have the final say on ABI policies for 2021.  Final action will occur at the September meeting of the board.  

Annual Leadership Iowa University Program August 9-13

Some years ago, the ABI Foundation created the Leadership Iowa University program.  The program, open to all Iowa College students (community college and four-year colleges alike), provides leadership and career development training and other opportunities to students in a week-long course.  The 2020 program will be held August 9-13 in Des Moines.  Go here for more information:  

2020 ABI Executive Open August 31

ABI’s annual Executive Open is one of the association’s most popular events.  The 2020 Open will be held Monday, August 31 at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in West Des Moines.  Because spots fill so quickly, you may wish to register now.  If so, go here:  See you in West Des Moines in August! 

Foundation Program Boards to Meet

Two of the ABI Foundation’s programs will hold board meetings this week.  On Thursday, the Board of Directors for the aforementioned Leadership Iowa University program will meet.  That will be followed on Friday by a meeting of the Business Horizons Board of Directors.  

Thank you to these terrific Foundation leaders for their time and service.  And thank you to you for your support of these programs, which serve our state’s young people so well.  While an in-person experience will not happen for Business Horizons this year, work continues to be done to make the program even better.  

Episode 25 of Iowa Business Report Radio Program Broadcast

The Iowa Business Report radio program’s 25th edition was broadcast statewide over the weekend.  ABI is proud to sponsor this terrific program.  Click here to listen for yourself:  Links can also be found on the ABI website at  The show is produced by well-known Iowa broadcaster Jeff Stein.  

ABI and the NAM Team Up

Yesterday’s Des Moines Register carried an op-ed jointly authored by NAM President Jay Timmons (National Association of Manufacturers, Washington DC) and myself.  The focus of the op-ed is something that ABI led here in Iowa during the just-completed session of the General Assembly, adoption of necessary protections for business related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to read the op-ed for yourself:

The focus now shifts to Congress and the need to pass protection legislation there.  In the meantime thank you to Jay and the NAM for the always strong ABI-NAM partnership. 

Jack Hasken Celebrates First Birthday

That’s right, ABI Board Member Jack Hasken (Jackson Manufacturing, Maquoketa) celebrated the first birthday of his grandson, also named Jack.  ABI has photographic evidence that both Jacks, senior and junior, had a terrific time and were quite stylish in matching fedoras.  Congratulations to Jacks young and old(er) and to grandma and former ABI Chair Sarah Hasken

Story Construction Highlighted in Business Record for New Management Method

You have read previously in this memorandum about the management system utilized by ABI member Story Construction.  Known as the Story 2.0 Method, it is a tool developed by Story officials that lets everyone involved in a project know about timelines, upcoming needs, and other factors associated with a given project.  I have seen it for myself and it is a game-changer. 

The Story 2.0 Method is highlighted in a feature story in this week’s Des Moines Business Record.  The article shares information about how the system has helped Story refine communication, training, and ultimately, the finished products for its customers.  Congratulations on the great coverage to everyone at Story, including company president and ABI Board Member Mike Espeset (Story Construction, Ames)!