Annual LIU Program Coming Up - Monday Memo 7/27/15

July 27, 2015

Leadership Iowa University to Begin Seventh Annual Class in Two Weeks; ABI Leaders Can Interact with the Class

Two weeks from yesterday, on August 9, talented Iowa college students will assemble for the seventh annual session of the ABI Foundation’s newest program, Leadership Iowa University.  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.  The first six LIU class programs received rave remarks from students, college officials, ABI leaders, and others. 

There are two separate networking receptions that provide great opportunities for you, ABI board members and former Chairs, to interact with LIU students.  The first reception will be held two weeks from today, Monday, August 10, in Grinnell.  The next afternoon, Tuesday, August 11, a second reception will be held in Ames.  Both events will be held from 5:00 to 6:15 p.m.  Both events are FREE and all you need do to attend is reply to this email message.  There may also be other opportunities to interact with the LIU class, so please stay tuned. 

Great supporters and donors and terrific volunteers make LIU possible.  ABI Foundation Vice President, Programs Kay Neumann-Thomas, Development Director Mary Mendenhall-Core, Foundation Marketing and Programs Coordinator Jessi Steward, and Foundation Intern Ali Krogman  provide excellent staff leadership.  Look for a full report at September's board meeting.

Calling All Golf Fans

Speaking of the ABI Foundation, watch for an exciting opportunity tomorrow.  The Foundation will be holding an online auction for two sets of Ground Tickets to the PGA Championship to be held at Whistling Straits (Wisconsin).  This prestigious tournament, of course, is the fourth and final major of the season.  It will be held Monday, August 10ththrough Sunday, August 16th.  

Special thanks go to longtime ABI Board Member Peter Voorhees (Standard Golf, Cedar Falls), who generously donated the tickets.  Remember, be watching tomorrow for further information and get your bids in then!

ABI to Co-Sponsor Foreign Trade Zone Seminar Friday

ABI Board Member Andy Hansen (John Deere, Ankeny) is a leader in matters related to manufacturing and foreign trade.  Andy had a great idea for a foreign trade seminar and the event will take place this Friday in Ankeny.  You and your team are invited to participate at no charge as an ABI member.

The seminar will focus on the advantages of utilizing a Foreign Trade Zone when importing components as a part of your supply chain process.  Expert speakers sharing high-value information will comprise the program.  Again, there is no fee to participate.  Go here for more information and to note your attendance: .

The event will be held Friday, July 31, from 7:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. at Des Moines Area Community College.  Thank you to Andy and to ABI member the Greater Des Moines Partnership for their leadership in organizing this important event.  Thank you, too, to ABI Bookkeeper Chrissy Blake for helping with this event.

Policy Development Meetings Two Weeks Away

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 begin in just two weeks.  Well over 100 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.  Simply go to /en/events_calendar/ to register for the committee meetings of interest to you. 

Thank you to ABI Vice Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics, Fairfield), and to ABI Senior Vice President Public Policy Nicole Crain, Policy and Regulatory Affairs Coordinator Zach Dalluge, Policy and Political Affairs Counsel Rachel Geilenfeld, and Executive Administrative Assistant Michelle Vollstedt for leading this process.  The ABI Board of Directors will act on the recommendations of these committees at the September board meeting.

Registration Now Open for ABI Executive Open; Foursomes Adding Up Quickly

Registrations are pouring in for the Seventh Annual ABI Executive Open, one of ABI's most popular annual events.  Dozens of foursomes have already signed-up.

Go to /en/events_calendar/ and click on the Executive Open link to register or for more information.  The event will be held at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in West Des Moines, one of our state's finest private clubs .  Editor's Note: As longtime ABI Board Member and Wakonda Club member Merle Pederson (Principal Financial Group, Des Moines) reminds me, the Wakonda Club (the site of previous Executive Opens) is beautiful, too!

Thank you to ABI Member Programs Director Holly Mueggenberg, Membership Coordinator Dorothy Knowles, and Vice President  Member Development and Programs Kathy Anderson for their management related to this event.  Remember, if you haven't yet done so, go now to the link above and complete your registration for this always-fun ABI event.

New Board Member Orientations Continue

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 and it is so again this year. 

As is the case every year, ABI members elected exceptional people to the association's board of directors last June.  You will have the opportunity to meet most of the new board members in September.  They include: Cindy Dietz (Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids), Jack Hasken (Jackson Manufacturing, Maquoketa), and Krista Tanner (ITC Midwest, Des Moines), and the honorary Leadership Iowa board member, Kellan Longenecker (General Mills, Carlisle

Thank you to them and to all of you for your leadership!

Help Elevate and Get in to the Iowa State Fair for Free; Schaefer-Weaton Headlines Ambassador Training; Legends Nominations Accepted

ABI's Elevate Advanced Manufacturing program is looking to you and your employees to help staff its booth at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines.  Shifts remain open August 20- 23.  if you work a four-hour shift, Elevate will get you into the fair for free!  Work your shift and enjoy the rest of the day at no charge.  Contact Robyn Denson for more information:

Speaking of Elevate, ABI Vice Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics, Fairfield) was the headliner at last week's Elevate Ambassador training.  It was exciting to see the passion and enthusiasm of the 40-plus people in the room, ABI members who drove hours to attend.  Thank you to Lori, Robyn, and to Michele Farrell (Measured Intentions, Urbandale) for such a wonderful day.

Finally, remember that Elevate is currently accepting nominations for the first-ever "Legends in Manufacturing Awards,"  which are due August 1.  Please click on this link for more information:/index.cfm/11274/70002/deadline_to_apply_legends_in_manufacturing_awards.

Twelfth Annual YPIowa Conference Next Month

The twelfth annual YPIowa Annual Conference will be held in September in Carroll.   The conference will be held on September 24 and 25. 

The conference is always a terrific event and is a great way to connect with leading young professionals.  I have heard that some companies actually do some staff recruiting at the conference.  I can tell you that it will be a great time to network with YPs from throughout Iowa.  Register today at

NAM Economic Report Notes Improvement in Manufacturing Sector

As are many of you, I am an avid reader of the National Association of Manufacturers' Monday Economic Report.  Last week's report carried a lead story that highlighted improvements in the global economy.

Manufacturing continues to be static worldwide, but pockets of strong growth exist in the United States.  If you wish to read it for yourself, simply reply to this message and I will forward the report to you at once.

Board Members Invited to Hubbell Groundbreaking

ABI Board Member Rick Tollakson (Hubbell Realty Company, West Des Moines) leads a company that has experienced exponential growth in recent years.  Developments throughout Central Iowa and all over the state are a hallmark of Hubbell's exciting work.

The company's latest project is the Bridge District, Des Moines' newest downtown neighborhood.  Rick invites ALL ABI board members, those from Des Moines and those who will be town on July 30, to join him and other leaders for a groundbreaking event in honor of the Bridge District.  Meet at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden at 4:30 p.m. this Thursday for music, drinks, food, and a celebration.  Please rsvp for this free event by

CIPCO Holds 68th Annual Meeting, Dennis Murdock to Again Participate in White House Conference on Attracting Rural Investment

Longtime ABI member Central Iowa Power Cooperative held its 68th Annual Meeting of Members last week in Altoona.  A terrific crowd was on hand to hear a series of great speakers.  Former ABI Chair Dennis Murdock (CIPCO, Des Moines), CIPCO's CEO, addressed the audience and recounted the achievements of CIPCO during a very strong year.  Other ABI Board Members in attendance included Rand Fisher (Iowa Area Development Group, West Des Moines) and Kirk Trede (Eastern Iowa Light & Power, Wilton).

In other CIPCO news, Dennis is again one of a select group of business leaders to participate in a special conference to be held next week in Washington, DC.  The conference will take place at the White House on Wednesday and Thursday and it will focus on ways to attract investment to rural America.  Congratulations, Dennis!

Two ABI Leaders named Kirk and One Named Tom Celebrate Birthdays

Former ABI Chair Kirk Tyler (Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Waukee) celebrated his birthday last Thursday and unbeknownst to Kirk (I will bet), his staff tweeted a Throw-Back Thursday photo of a very young Kirk.  He looked quite dapper in his bow tie and hat!  Another Kirk celebrated last week, as ABI Board member Kirk McCollough (Seneca Foundry, Webster City) celebrated his birthday last Friday.  And, ABI Board Member Tom Determann (CRDC, Clinton) also recently celebrated his birthday.  Happy birthday, to both Kirks and to Tom!

Hanawalts Invade Great Britain

Speaking of celebrating birthdays, Immediate Past Chair Mark Hanawalt (United Equipment Accessories, Waverly)recently celebrated his in a big way.  It involved a trip to the Open Championship (the British Open Golf Tournament) in Scotland.

Mark and his wife, Barb Hanawalt, and sons David and Matthew, made the trip.  Of course they saw a fabulous finish, with Iowan Zach Johnson winning a three-way playoff for the championship.   I am already looking forward to see what Mark does NEXT year to top this!  Congratulations and again, happy birthday, Mark!