Annual Conference Work Continues - Monday Memo 2/12/18

February 12, 2018

ABI Team Heads to Iowa City-Coralville Next Week for Taking Care of Business Conference Presser; Conference Registration Live on the 22nd

A team of ABI leaders and staff members are heading to Iowa City-Coralville a week from Friday.  Led by ABI Chair David Zrostlik (Stellar Industries, Garner) and Conference Committee Chair Donna Popp-Bruesewitz (Stellar Industries, Garner), the team will conduct several meetings related to the annual Taking Care of Business Conference. 

Chief among these is the holding of a press conference for local media.  The 2018 Taking Care of Business Conference will be held June 5-7 in Greater Iowa City.  Watch for registration to be live next week, on February 22nd. At that time, register and, if you haven’t already, make your lodging reservations.  While two of the conference hotels are already sold-out, plenty of other great spots remain.  Go here for more information:  

Iowa Business Day on the Hill A Month Away

The 2018 version of ABI's Business Day on the Hill will be held Tuesday, March 13.  The program begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. at the ABI office in Des Moines' East Village (plenty of convenient free parking is available directly across the street).  Following a continental breakfast and an exclusive update with the latest information from the General Assembly, participants will be taken to the Capitol for meetings with legislators and other leaders.  

There will be many highlights during the day.  For instance, you'll have plenty of time to speak with your legislators, look around Iowa's beautiful Statehouse, and conduct other business.  Register now at  

This year, ABI Day on the Hill has again become Business Day on the Hill, as our association is partnering with the Iowa Chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, the Iowa Chamber Alliance, and the National Association of Women Business Owners.  On behalf of our ABI officers, thank you in advance for your participation in this year’s event. 

ABI Board Will Meet March 13

The next ABI leadership meeting will be a meeting of the ABI Board of Directors on Tuesday, March 13, in Des Moines.  ABI Chair David Zrostlik (Stellar Industries, Garner) will lead the meeting, which will be held at the ABI Office in downtown Des Moines.  

In addition to the latest news from the Statehouse, a full agenda will be on tap for the meeting and I hope you can all attend.  Watch for the usual packet of materials to arrive in your email in-basket about a week in advance of the meeting.  Click here to register. 

Legislative Update Friday

Periodically throughout the legislative session, ABI lobbyists host a teleconference to give you the very latest information from the Statehouse.  Updates on bills, legislative proposals, state actions, and other matters are covered in each call.  Your specific questions about those topics are also very much welcomed. 

The next call will be held a week this Friday, February 16th, at 8:00 a.m. and you and your employees are encouraged to participate.  The members-only call is free as a part of your ABI membership, but please register at  

Latest BRIowa Now Out

The Des Moines Business Record is a great ABI member and partner.  The business weekly covers central Iowa and, once a month when it publishes (in conjunction with ABI) Business Record Iowa, it is a statewide newspaper. 

The latest edition of Business Record Iowa, ABI's monthly newsprint magazine, is now out and it should be in your mailbox by now.  If you haven't received it, please contact me and we'll get another copy out to you right away.  For now, you can read it online here:  

In addition to the latest news about ABI members and programs, the focus of this edition is Iowa’s Creative Corridor, the region surrounding Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. You will find a great photo of ABI Board Members Jenn Bliel (Van Meter, Cedar Rapids), David Bywater (Economy Advertising, Iowa City), Cindy Dietz (Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids), and Jeanine Penticoff (Alliant Energy, Cedar Rapids) on the cover.  Look for it in your in-box now. 

Advisory Council Meeting Thursday

Members of the ABI Advisory Council provide leadership in many ways.  Certainly their financial support to ABI is important, but of even greater value are the people and information these great companies provide to ABI members. 

The council will hold its monthly meeting this Thursday in Des Moines.  Please join me in thanking the members of the council.  They are 21st Century Rehab, BCC Advisers, Brick Gentry P.C., BrownWinick, CIRAS, CliftonLarsonAllen, EMC Insurance, Far Reach, Focus OneSource, HDH Advisors, LMC Insurance and Risk Management, Principal Midwest Business Center, Shift Interactive, Tero, The Iowa Clinic, Wellmark, and Wells Fargo

Next Connecting Statewide Leader Session March 1 in Fairfield

The next event in ABI's Connecting Statewide Leaders series will be held March 1 in Fairfield.  A high-value panel, networking luncheon, and manufacturing tours will be a part of the program, which will be held at the beautiful Fairfield Convention and Arts Center.  

These programs are simply great ways to gain information and connect with your fellow ABI members, Leadership Iowa class members, local business leaders, and others.  And we also appreciate the reports we receive about sales/deals being made during these events, too.  Join ABI for the event on March 1.  For more information and to register, click on  

Waverly Public Policy Roundtable on March 2

The next in an ongoing series of legislative roundtables will be held at United Equipment Accessories in Waverly on March 2nd.  Senator Craig Johnson and Representative Sandy Salmon will be on hand to discuss issues with ABI members.  Many thanks to former ABI Chair Mark Hanawalt (United Equipment Accessories, Waverly) and his team for hosting this important event.  For more information, click here:  

Biennial Drug Testing Seminar March 22 in Des Moines

The biennial ABI Drug testing Seminar will be held on March 22 at ABI.  The program will include the latest information about legal issues related to drug testing and the latest information about best practices being utilized by other companies.  Click here for more information and to register:  We look forward to seeing you at ABI on March 22nd. 

Foundation Staff Requesting Your Help

Members of the ABI Foundation staff are calling all ABI members.  With the annual Taking Care of Business conference just a few months away, the ABI Foundation is revving up for its annual conference auction.  Foundation staffers are looking for packages/donations for both the live and silent auction.  If you have donated in the past, we hope you will be moved to do so again. 

If you haven’t donated items to the auction, we hope you will take a moment to think about how you or your business can contribute. The conference auction is vital to the success and sustainability of the Foundation’s life-changing programs. To make arrangements, please contact Amanda Nuzum, the Foundation’s Development Director at 515-235-0569 or

Annual Cedar Valley Legislative Reception Tomorrow Evening

Another great ABI member/partner is coming town.  The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber is hosting its annual legislative reception tomorrow night at the Des Moines Marriott hotel in downtown Des Moines.  Welcome and congratulations to Alliance President and CEO (and ABI Board Member) Steve Dust (Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, Waterloo) and Alliance members for what is also always a great event!  

Happy Birthday to Charles Sukup

Former ABI Chair Charles Sukup (Sukup Manufacturing Co., Sheffield) will celebrate his birthday on Saturday.  ABI sends congratulations and best birthday wishes to Charles!