Register Now for Annual Legislative Reception - Monday Memo 12/12/16

December 12, 2016

Governor, Lieutenant Governor, State Officials, Legislators Want to See You at 2017 ABI Legislative Event; Register Now

ABI knows that Governor Terry Branstad, Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds, other state officials, and legislators of both parties attend the ABI Legislative Reception so they can see YOU.  As you know, this event is one of the most popular events ABI hosts all year long.  Also as you know, it is likely that over 500 people will attend the event, including more legislators of both parties than at any other similar event.  I pointed out last week that the attendance of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor, coupled with that of so many legislators and other state officials, is one more confirmation of your importance to Iowa policy makers.  They attend because YOU attend. 

The ABI staff is busy finalizing details related to the 2017 ABI Legislative Briefing and Reception, which will be held Wednesday, January 11 at the Embassy Suites on the River in Downtown Des Moines.  The briefing is your opportunity to hear the latest about legislative news and about ABI's agenda.  You can then head right into the reception and share comments with your local legislators.  Your participation and interaction with legislators is what makes this event a must-attend for Iowa policy-makers.  

Go to the ABI Events webpage and click on  You’ll find all the information you need and can follow the easy instructions to register now.  

By the way, as I write these words, no one knows whether Terry Branstad will be still be Governor of Iowa on January 11, or whether he will have resigned to accept his new post as the U.S. Ambassador to China. No matter what, I fully expect that Governor Branstad -- or Governor Reynolds -- WILL attend the reception.  Thank you in advance for attending as well.  

ABI Board of Directors to Meet in Four Weeks (January 11)

With the meeting of the ABI Executive Committee held last week, leadership meetings at the association are completed for the calendar year.  In a little over four weeks, however, it will be time to begin the meetings for the new year. 

The first meeting of the ABI Board of Directors for 2017, led by ABI Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics, Fairfield), will be held January 11.  This is the same date as the 2017 ABI Legislative Briefing and Reception (see item above).  You should receive the usual packet of meeting materials in about three weeks.  Please contact me with any questions or comments and please make plans now to attend. 

New Online Directory Operational

ABI has been working on the development of a new, online member directory for some time now. Last week, the online directory became operational. 

The new directory allows you to check member company information, search industry partners, connect with ABI colleagues, and much more. You should have received a link to the new directory last week.  If you did not, please let me know.  In the meantime, a big thank you to ABI Communications Director Emily Schettler and Membership Coordinator Dorothy Knowles who led the work on this project.  

IIPAC Development Work Continues

Later today, members of ABI's public policy team will convene for a teleconference with the consultant group who is aiding ABI in developing its political arm, the Iowa Industry Political Action Committee. IIPAC just celebrated an incredible record of success related to the November elections.  Further development will only lead to more IIPAC success. 

Your participation in a study related to the PAC provided the baseline data that will lead to a new development plan for IIPAC. THANK YOU for your help.  

Once a plan is completed, it will be brought before the IIPAC Board of Directors, chaired by former ABI Chair Kirk Tyler (Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Waukee), and then it will be brought before you.  Please stay tuned for news of more developments. 

Advisory Council Members to Gather This Week

Members of the ABI Advisory Council do much to advance the work of the association.  Their leadership and support is never taken for granted.  They have played a very large part in the increase in quality and quantity of ABI programs across Iowa. 

The members of the council will hold a holiday gathering Thursday in West Des Moines.  Thank you to 21st Century Rehab, ATW Training Solutions, BCC Advisers, Brick Gentry P.C., BrownWinick, CIRAS, CliftonLarsonAllen, EMC, Focus OneSource, Global Reach, LMC Insurance and Risk Management, Manpower, Measured Intentions, Principal Financial Group, Spindustry Digital, Transition Point Business Advisors, and Wellmark

Van Gundy Leaves ABI Board; Heads to Iowa Business Council

Due to circumstances beyond her control, newly-elected ABI Board Member Georgia van Gundy (Principal, Des Moines), had to resign her seat on the board.  You will recall that Georgia was elected last month to fill the unexpired term of long time ABI Board Member Merle Pederson (Principal, Des Moines)

On January 3rd, Georgia will become the new Executive Director of the Iowa Business Council. That is a great post for Georgia and we wish her all the best! 

Business Record Iowa in Your Mailbox

You should have received in the mail the latest edition of ABI's Business Record Iowa, published in conjunction with member Business Publications CorporationBR Iowa is found inside the December 9 edition of BPC's Des Moines Business Record

The cover model for this month is a great member company CEO, Duane Smith (True North Companies, Cedar Rapids).  if you did not receive BR Iowa, let me know; we'll get one to you. 

Busy Time for ABI Foundation Programs; Pella LI Session, Other Events Successful

As usual, this time of year is a busy one for the ABI Foundation.  The Board of Governors for the Leadership Iowa program will meet tomorrow and meetings of various Foundation committees will be held this week.  All of this activity will be part of a complete report on Foundation programs that will be shared when the ABI Board of Directors meets in January.  

In other Foundation-related news, the 2016-2017 Leadership Iowa Class held its third session last week in Pella.  The class heard from an incredible array of terrific speakers.  You'll have an opportunity to meet the class at next month's ABI legislative reception. 

As a part of the Pella session, ABI and the ABI Foundation produced another in the Connecting Statewide Leaders events series.  It was a great success.  Special thanks to ABI board members who joined us in Waverly last week: MaryAndringa (Vermeer Corporation, Pella), Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics, Fairfield), Kelly Barrick (The Private Bank, West Des Moines), Jason Gross (Nationwide, Des Moines), Vince Newendorp (Vermeer Corporation, Pella), and Krista Tanner (ITC Midwest, Des Moines). 

More Coverage for Alliant's Big Cedar Announcement

Last week's Monday Memo carried a feature about the recent announcement by Alliant Energy of its Big Cedar Industrial Park.  The development is Iowa's first so-called "Mega Park" and it is receiving a lot of attention. 

Last week's Corridor Business Journal carried another big article about the Big Cedar announcement.  Prominently featured in the article was ABI Board Member Jeanine Penticoff (Alliant Energy, Cedar Rapids).  Jeanine led the Big Cedar team.  If you want to read the article for yourself, reply to this message and I will get it to you at once.  In the meantime congratulations again to Jeanine and everyone at Alliant!

NAM Global Manufacturing Economic Update: Manufacturing "Turned a Corner"

As you know from my frequent mention of them, I pay close attention to the publications of the National Association of Manufacturers. NAM publications are first-rate, and the Global Manufacturing Economy Update is no exception.  

Last week's Update led with an article that explained that "global manufacturing has turned a corner" and solid growth is being recorded.  As always, there was also lots of other good information included in this month's Update.  Reply to this message if you wish to read the report for yourself and I will get it to you at once. 

Steve Dust Celebrates

ABI Board Member Steve Dust (Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, Waterloo) celebrate his birthday last Saturday. Happy birthday, Steve! 

The Business of ABI: Reserves Untouched for Tenth Consecutive Year

Please allow me one operational note, one that I often note this time of year. For the tenth consecutive year, ABI has not tapped our budgetary reserves.  As you know, that is a reversal of an untenable situation that saw the association tap reserves for several years in a row.  In fact, thanks to your leadership, ABI is growing.  Why is that important?  Because it allows the association to aggressively advance the agenda developed by the board and to serve members.  Thank you -- and thanks to every ABI member -- for making that the case.