Annual Policy Meetings Begin Next Week - Monday Memo 8/3/15

August 3, 2015

Policy Development Meetings Begin a Week From Tomorrow

For the third year in a row, the schedule for ABI's annual policy committees has been advanced.  The annual process will begin with a meeting of the ABI Employment and Workforce  Committee a week from tomorrow.  Thank you to ABI member Karen Miller (Manpower, Des Moines), who chairs the committee.

Hundreds of ABI members have already registered to attend one or more of the five committee meetings.  If you haven't already done so, there is still plenty of time for you and your employees to register.  Simply go/en/events_calendar/ to register for the committee meetings of interest to you.  The ABI Board of Directors will act on the recommendations of these committees at the September board meeting.

August ABI Executive Committee Teleconference Next Week

Members of the ABI Executive Committee will convene for their monthly teleconference on August 12.  ABI Chair Paul Gregoire (Emerson/Fisher, Marshalltown) and committee members will work through a full agenda in advance of next month’s meeting of the ABI Board of Directors.

As you know, the first ABI Board Meeting of the 2016 fiscal year will be held on September 23.  Please mark your calendars now and finalize your plans to participate in this important meeting.

Leadership Iowa University to Begin Seventh Annual Class Sunday

Next Sunday (August 9), the seventh annual session of the ABI Foundation’s Leadership Iowa University program will convene at ABI.  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 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.  Please stay tuned for more information.

Rachel Geilenfeld Completes ABI Service

Late last year, Rachel Geilenfeld joined ABI as Policy and Political Affairs Counsel.  Rachel has completed her service and is no longer with ABI.  We thank her for her service and we wish her the very best.

ABI Members Urged to Participate in Annual CLA Manufacturing and Distribution Survey

ABI member CliftonLarsonAllen is now collecting responses to its annual survey of small-to-midsize manufacturers and distributors.  ABI members are urged to participate and you can do so here:

The survey closes on August 21, so go now to the link and upload your information.  By the way, anyone who completes the survey will receive a complimentary copy of the results and a $20 Visa gif card.  Please contact me with questions or comments and on behalf of CLA, thank you in advance for your participation.

ABI Advisory Council Meets August 17

Members of the ABI Advisory Council provide significant support for the association.  Certainly their financial investment is important and appreciated, but even more valuable is the programming and resource support they provide for ABI members.  The council will hold its August meeting two weeks from Thursday in Des Moines.  Thank you to ABI Advisory Council members ATW Training and Consulting, BCC Advisers, Bergan Paulsen, Brick Gentry,BrownWinick, CIRAS. CliftonLarsonAllen, EMC, Focus OneSource, Global Reach, Manpower, Measured Intentions, LMC, Principal Financial Group, QPS Employment Group, Spindustry, Transition Point Business Advisors, and Wellmark.

New Board Member Orientations Completed

With a meeting with honorary Leadership Iowa board member Kellan Longenecker (General Mills, Carlisle) last Thursday, board orientation sessions with newly-elected board members have been completed.  It is always exciting to see these operations and  to learn about the innovative things being done by these businesses.  

In addition to Kellan, ABI members elected exceptional people to the association's board of directors last June include:Cindy Dietz (Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids), Jack Hasken (Jackson Manufacturing, Maquoketa), and Krista Tanner (ITC Midwest, Des Moines).  As always, thank you to them and to all of you for your leadership.

Elevate Advanced Manufacturing at the Iowa State Fair

Going to the State Fair? Be sure to support ABI's "Elevate Advanced Manufacturing" while you are there.  Check theElevate booth, located in the Varied Industries. Be sure to grab a button and show support for Elevate Advanced Manufacturing.  Learn more at

Seventh Annual ABI Executive Open on August 31

Register now for the seventh annual ABI Executive Open Best Ball, which will be held on August 31 at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in West Des Moines.  Golf, networking, and dinner will highlight the day.  Registration has been open for a couple of weeks and golf is nearly sold-out! To register right now for the remaining spots, go to  We look forward to seeing you at the end of the month. 

Okoboji Institute Underway; ABI Members to Address Class Throughout Week

The Okoboji Entrepreneurial Institute kicked-off its 2015 session yesterday with 30 (or so) students coming to the Iowa Great lakes for a week of learning.  As in past years, several ABI members will participate in OEI events during the week. 

Former ABI Chair Toby Shine (Shine Bros. Corp., Spencer) will host the class at his great Okoboji Classic Cars facility (the site of the 2013 ABI Chair's Dinner) on Wednesday night.  ABI Board Member  Bruce Tamisiea (Tecton Industries, Spencer) will also host students.  Several other ABI member companies in the Lakes region will host students at events throughout the week.  Thank you to all involved for their time and leadership in working with the students.

By the way, I was pleased to represent ABI at events marking the 10th Anniversary of OEI this past weekend.  As always, there were several ABI leaders out and about in the Iowa Great Lakes.  It was a pleasure to see Former ABI Chair Toby Shine (Shine Bros. Corp., Spencer), current ABI Board Members Drew Vogel (Vogel Paint Company, Orange City) and Alan Mores (Harlan Newspapers, Harlan) and former ABI Board Members John Schreurs (Strategic America, West Des Moines) and Eva Shine (Shine Bros. Corp, Spencer)!

ABI Co-Sponsored Foreign Trade Zone Seminar Provides High-Value Information

Last Friday, at the invitation of ABI Board Member Andy Hansen (John Deere, Ankeny), ABI was pleased to co-sponsor a Foreign Trade Zone Seminar.  We did so along with ABI member Greater Des Moines Partnership and others.

The seminar was a great success, with lots of high-value information for attendees.  Terrific remarks by Andy, by Kyle Uhen (Deere & Company, Moline), by Scott Folkers (Winnebago Industries, Forest City), and by Sean Murray (Miller & Company, Kansas City) made a great program.  Some specific real-world examples of FTZ implementation by Kyle were particularly helpful.  Thank you to all involved.

Jim Tyler Celebrates

Former ABI Chair Jim Tyler (Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Atlantic) celebrated his birthday last week and he marked the day by celebrating with family, including his son and former ABI Chair, Kirk Tyler (Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Waukee).  Happy birthday, Jim!

Rand Fisher Leads National Group

As you may recall, longtime ABI Board Member Rand Fisher (Iowa Area Development Group, West Des Moines),was elected President of the National Rural Economic Developers Association.  As the top board official, Rand is in charge of leasing NREDA throughout the year (and is already leading the organization to record growth).  Congratulations, Rand!

Big Summer for Hasken Family

Newly-elected ABI Board Member Jack Hasken (Jackson Manufacturing, Maquoketa) and his wife, former ABI ChairSarah McDonald Hasken (Finley Hospital, Dubuque), are having a very busy summer!  Daughter Heather was married in June, Sarah began her new position with Finley, and last weekend, Jack led the 150th Anniversary Celebration for the nation's oldest shooting club west of the Mississippi, the Dubuque Shooting Society (Jack is the Chairman of the society's board of directors).  Whew!  Congratulations to all the Haskens and best wishes for a quiet rest-of-the-summer!