Executive Committee, Board will Meet in Coming Weeks - Monday Memo 3/17/17

March 27, 2017

ABI Executive Committee to Meet Next Week; Board Will Meet in May in Fairfield

ABI Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield) and members of the association’s Executive Committee will meet by teleconference next week.  The April EC teleconference takes place the morning of April 5 and committee members can expect to see the usual packet of meeting materials in their email in-basket later this week. 

As for the ABI Board of Directors, that body will meet again next month, on May 3.  The meeting will be held in Fairfield. In fact, a series of events around Fairfield will make the May board meeting a special one.  Join your ABI colleagues at the beautiful Fairfield Golf and Country Club (http://fgacc.com/) for dinner on May 2, the night before the meeting, and then join us at the fabulous Fairfield Arts and Convention Center (http://www.fairfieldacc.com/) for the board meeting.  This terrific facility is un-paralleled for a community the size of Fairfield. Finally, the board meeting will be followed by a tour of the newly-expanded Agri-Industrial Plastics Company. I guarantee you will enjoy these events.  See you in Fairfield in May! 

Workers Compensation Seminar Thursday at ABI

The 2017 edition of ABI’s biennial Workers Compensation Seminar will be held this Thursday, March 30, at ABI. There is no better resource for information to help you and your employees manage and comply with Iowa’s workers compensation program than that you will find in this seminar.  Your HR, risk management, and compliance staff will find the latest in rulings, best practice-sharing, and other items related to workers comp at the meeting.  

This year’s seminar is perhaps even timelier, because the Iowa General Assembly is considering necessary reforms to the current system. In that regard, you will hear the most up-to-the-minute information from the Statehouse at the seminar.  To register, please click on this link: http://www.cvent.com/events/workers-compensation-best-practices-lessons-learned-and-ideas-from-the-innovators/event-summary-b7df219082a0451dbed5f8305d5f1685.aspx.  

ABI Legislative Update Teleconference Friday

As you know, the next ABI Legislative Update Teleconference will be held this Friday, March 31 at 8:00 a.m. The call is free as a part of your ABI membership, but please register at https://www.iowaabi.org/events/detail/50-abi-legislative-update-teleconference-members-only/.  It is my belief that there will be major developments to discuss on the call.  In any event, this is a busy time at the Statehouse; don’t miss your opportunity to hear the very latest information.

Applicants Sought for Elevate Scholarships

ABI’s Elevate Advanced Manufacturing program has been a huge success. As you know, Elevate raises the profile of manufacturing careers, connects Iowans with training, and then connects Iowans with jobs. As a part of the program’s outreach, Elevate is again offering scholarships of $500 to high school students.

Please encourage students in your area to apply for the scholarships. You can find more information on the Elevate website at http://www.elevateiowa.com/about/elevate-scholarship-program.

Great Foundation Auction Items Requested

As the time for the annual conference (including the annual auction benefitting the programs of the ABI Foundation) nears, you will recall that the ABI Foundation staff is calling for your donations for terrific auction items. Foundation staffers are looking for packages/donations for both the live and silent auction.  If you have donated in the past, please do so again.  If you haven’t donated items to the auction, please take a moment to think about how you or your business can contribute. 

One hundred percent of the proceeds of the auction go to Foundation programs. To make arrangements, please contact Amanda Nuzum, the Foundation’s Development Director, at 515-235-0569 or anuzum@iowaabi.org.  Thank you for your consideration. 

Convention Sponsorships Going Fast

As you know, ABI's 114th Annual Convention, the 2017 Taking Care of Business Conference, will be held in Dubuque in June.  You can click here http://www.cvent.com/events/2017-abi-taking-care-of-business-conference/custom-19-d7a94db8d5de4399b11588b1b5f98d84.aspx to register or to find more information.  

Related to the convention, sponsorship opportunities are now being reserved and they are going fast.  The convention just gets bigger and better each year and sponsors want to be a part of Iowa’s most important business networking event.  You can find sponsorship information on the convention website, but you can always contact ABI directly with your questions or comments.  Thank you to all of the many companies who have already made their sponsorship reservations! 

Leadership Iowa Class to Converge on Charles City and Osage Next Week

The 2016-2017 Class of the ABI Foundation’s Leadership Iowa program has been another in a string of terrific groups.  Class members have been strongly engaged in the LI sessions and they will have an opportunity to come together again next week. 

Beginning with an informal session next Wednesday evening, the class will convene in Charles City and Osage through Friday, April 7.  This session will focus on economic development issues facing our state.  A wonderful slate of speakers has been developed to address the LI class.  Look for a full report at the next meeting of the ABI Board of Directors.  

Get Real-Time Updates from ABI via Twitter

ABI members tell me all the time how much they value the up-to-the-minute news they receive from ABI.  Quite a few ABI staffers tweet information all day long.  

At this time of the year, the real-time updates from the ABI Public Policy team of Nicole Crain, Jessica Harder, and Brad Hartkopf are particularly valuable.  You can get news AS IT IS HAPPENING directly from the floor of the General Assembly or from a committee room.   As you know, Nicole was two years ago ranked as one of Iowa's top tweeters for business news by the Des Moines Register

If you are already familiar with Twitter, follow Nicole, Jessica, Brad, Emily Schettler, Kathy Anderson, Kay Neumann-Thomas, me, and various ABI and ABI Foundation program feeds.  If you aren't a Tweeter or need assistance, just reply to this email and we'll get you set up. 

LIU to Hold Final Session This Week; Nominate Students for Leadership Iowa, LI University, and Business Horizons

In recent editions of this memorandum, I have been reminding you that this is the time of year to make nominations for ABI Foundation programs.  That invitation includes nominations for Leadership Iowa University. 

Leadership Iowa University is the newest ABI Foundation program and it will complete another very successful year later this week.  The 2016-2017 LIU class will meet for the final time this Friday and Saturday in Cedar Falls. LIU provides Iowa college students (public or private colleges, community colleges, etc.) with programming related to opportunities for them in Iowa and how they can plan for their future right here in Iowa.  

LIU – and Leadership Iowa and Business Horizons – all need your nominations.  It’s easy to nominate and you can do so by going to https://www.iowaabi.org/abi-foundation/about/ and clicking on the program links.  Thank you in advance for nominating participants for each of these three important programs. 

ABI Members Can Golf at Two Fantastic Courses in the Weeks Ahead; Conference Outing June 6; Executive Open August 28

You'll have the opportunity to play two of the Midwest's great golf courses in the coming months.  Eagle Ridge Resort (http://www.eagleridge.com/golf/) in Galena, Illinois is one of the very best golf courses in the nation and is a favorite of golfers from all over the country.  Eagle Ridge is the site of the ABI Conference Golf Outing on June 6.  

You will also again have the opportunity to play the gorgeous Des Moines Golf and Country Club (https://www.dmgcc.org/) in West Des Moines, one of Iowa's most exclusive private golf clubs.  This fall, the association will host the ninth annual Executive Open at the club.  A huge crowd is expected for the event, which routinely sells-out.  Please mark your calendars for August 28 and make plans to join your ABI colleagues for a terrific time. 

Dubuque Venues for 2017 Iowa Taking Care of Business Conference are Spectacular

Every year at this time, I admit to being given to a bit of hyperbole when describing things related to the annual conference.  In my own defense, however, every year I am right. 

ABI Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield), members of the conference planning committee, chaired by Amy Jones (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield), and several of us on staff have made many visits to Dubuque and you will be amazed at the venues to be experienced there.  The area is simply beautiful. 

From the fabulous Hotel Julien and other great hotels, to the terrific convention complex, to the great restaurants, and to sites all over the region, you will be enchanted.  Use the link noted previously and register now for the annual conference. 

NAM Report: Manufacturing expands for Sixth Consecutive Month

Last week’s Monday Economic Report, published by the National Association of Manufacturers, was a strong one.  The report outlined several positive data points and noted that manufacturing activity expanded for the sixth month in a row.  If you wish to read the report for yourself, please reply to this memo and I will forward it to you at once. 

Agri-Industrial Plastics Unveils New Website

Many ABI members have developed new websites recently and it is fun to see the exciting new online presence that has been created for these companies. One of the members with a new website is Agri-Industrial Plastics Company.  

Agri’s new website is sleek, with terrific graphics and convenient links. One of the very best features of the new website is a short video that details the company’s history and commitment to its employees and its customers.  I particularly enjoyed one scene that depicts company founder and former ABI Board Member Dick Smith (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield) handing the reins of the company, in the form of a wrench, to his daughter, company President and ABI Chair Lori Schaefer-Weaton (Agri-Industrial Plastics Company, Fairfield)

Click here to see the website and the video for yourself: http://agriindustrialplastics.com/aip-corporate/about-us/.  Congratulations to Dick, Lori, and everyone at Agri on the new website! 

Steve Jacobs to Attend International Meeting

Longtime ABI Board Member Steve Jacobs (BCC Advisers, Des Moines) is also a leader in his industry.  He is a longtime member of the Board of Directors of the Alliance for International Corporate Advisers (http://www.aoica.org/) and currently is the Treasurer of the Board.  Next month, Steve will be attending the AICA Global Mergers and Acquisitions meeting in Oslo, Norway.  Congratulations, Steve! 

Denise Essman Celebrates

Former ABI Board Member Denise Essman (Essman Companies, Des Moines) is celebrating her birthday this week on Friday, March 31.  ABI sends happy birthday wishes to Denise!