Register for Regional ABI Meetings Now - Monday Memo 6/1/20

June 1, 2020

Register Now for Next Week’s Virtual ABI Regional Meetings

ABI will host five regional meetings online next week and all members are invited to participate.  The goal of the meetings is to provide meaningful information and assistance to members and to learn about what you are experiencing in your operations related to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As you may recall, the five ABI regions are generally the northeast quadrant of Iowa, the southeast, the southwest, and the northeast.  Polk County, due to its density of membership, is its own region.  Members in each region will soon receive an email message with information about when and how to register for and participate in their regional meeting.  Or, go online and register now here:

Each meeting will include a review of ABI and ABI Foundation activities, as well as an update with the very latest legislative and congressional news.  The highlight of each meeting will be an opportunity for ABI members to share comments regarding operations and business projections.  Please plan on participating in the meeting for your region. 

Public Policy Team Headed Back to Statehouse; ABI Policy Meetings Coming this Summer

As you have been reading in the weekly ABI newsletter and elsewhere, members of the Iowa General Assembly will reconvene Wednesday at the Statehouse.  It is still not clear what interaction will be allowed for lobbyists and the public. 

Regardless, members of the ABI public policy team have been very busy working with legislators over the past several weeks on issues important to Iowa employers.  Watch for news as it develops from the statehouse. 

Upon adjournment, ABI will schedule regional policy meetings.  These meetings will likely be much different than in past years.  For example, there likely won’t be as many of them and they will likely be held online.  As always, however, those meetings will be followed by meetings of the ABI’s five policy committees.  Those meetings will be held in August.  Again, watch for more news soon.  Your participation in these meetings ensures ABI continues its successful advocacy at the Statehouse. 

Register Now for ABI Executive Open

It is time for me to share the story I often tell of the time an ABI staff member approached me with an idea for a late-summer, early-fall golf outing.  I said something like, “No one wants another golf outing, but sure let’s try it.” 

Well, the event sells-out every year and this was one more example (there are many) of me being wrong.  This year’s ABI Executive Open will be held at Des Moines Golf and Country Club on Monday, August 31.  Everyone loves the venue, as Des Moines Golf is one of the Midwest’s finest and most beautiful private clubs.  Learn more about it here:  While the course is fantastic, the real reason the event is so popular is because of the terrific networking and fun that are a part of it. 

Register now by clicking on this link:  You can register yourself or as part of a foursome.  And, even you don’t golf, join the crowd for the reception that caps the afternoon.  See you at Des Moines Golf in August! 

Leadership Iowa Class to Hold Virtual Session Next Week

As noted previously, the members of the 2019-2020 Leadership Iowa Class have been incredibly flexible.  With the help of the ABI Foundation staff, the class readily shifted into and embraced a virtual model for sessions. 

The class will meet virtually next week for a session on healthcare.  That will take place on June 10 and 11.  Plans for the class to graduate are being developed.  Whether that will take place virtually or in person later in the year is not yet known.  Stay tuned for more developments. 

22nd Episode of Iowa Business Report Radio Program Broadcast across Iowa

The Iowa Business Report radio program’s 22nd edition was broadcast statewide over the weekend.  ABI is proud to sponsor this terrific program.  Click here to listen for yourself:  Links can also be found on the ABI website at  The show is produced by well-known Iowa broadcaster Jeff Stein.  

This week’s episode has an interesting interview about interns and a timely interview with Iowa Speaker of the House Pat Grassley.  The final segment features a long time ABI member: Red Star Yeast of Cedar Rapids. 

CIRAS News Focuses on COVID-19 Resources; MEP Information of Interest

As you know, longtime ABI member/partner CIRAS (the Center for Industrial Research and Service at Iowa State University) is a tremendous resource for Iowa businesses.  The latest edition of the CIRAS News e-publication is another example of why that is the case. 

The newsletter focuses entirely on COVID-19 and ways to help you and your business.  The center of the issue includes 10 pages of checklists with links to supporting documents.  Please click here to read the newsletter and feel free to email to let the CIRAS team know if there is any other information you’d like to see.  Thank you to CIRAS for this great information. 

Speaking of CIRAS, that organization is also Iowa’s administrator for programs and assistance available through the U.S. Manufacturing Extension Partnership.  Last week, CIRAS shared an MEP infographic that illustrated that Iowa was now ranked 3rd among states for manufacturing intensity.  The state has never been ranked that highly before.  Click here to see the information from yourself:  It is YOU who make the ranking possible and thank you!

Kunert Part of CBJ Panel

ABI Board Member Kathryn Kunert (MidAmerican Energy Company, Des Moines) is a well-known Iowa business leader.  As such, she has been selected to be a part of the panel of speakers at an upcoming event. 

ABI member Corridor Business Journal, the weekly newsprint business publications in the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City corridor, will host its Mid-Year Economic Review by Zoom on June 24th.  Kathryn and other business leaders will share information about the current economic cycle.  Congratulations on being selected, Kathryn!  To register for the free webinar, go here:  

The Business of ABI: Serving Members

Remember to call on ABI.  Your investment in our association each year comes with an expectation from us that we will provide a return on that investment.  We want to help. 

For some members, thinking about ABI doesn’t come naturally.  It should.  For example, when it comes to managing issues related to COVID-19, ABI is doing many things.  We found and connected ABI members with Plexiglas vendors.  We helped find new vendors for supply chain issues.  We provided clear guidance on policies and state and federal laws.  We even helped arrange financing in a couple of cases.  We continued to press (successfully) for changes in laws and regulation that had genuine benefit for Iowa employers.  

We’ll keep at it.  Don’t forget to call on ABI when we can be of assistance.  And thank you for your support which makes that assistance possible.