L.E.A.D. Makes A Difference In Washington, D.C.

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The seventh annual L.E.A.D. drew more than 70 participants from across the promotional products industry.

The seventh annual L.E.A.D. drew more than 70 participants from across the promotional products industry.

The seventh annual PPAI Legislation Education and Action Day (L.E.A.D.) is ongoing in Washington, D.C., today as more than 70 industry professionals from 30 states meet with senators, representatives and legislative staff to discuss relevant legislation, issues and opportunities.

Conversations focused on important national and state issues, including the Department of Labor’s overtime rule; the Safe Harbor Rule of the Revenue Act of 1978 regarding independent contractors; deductibility for business advertising expenditures and legislation to modify the tax code to support incentives for wellness programs, among other issues.

L.E.A.D. drew participants from 30 states. Its Texas delegation included (from left) Peter Hirsch, D'Anne Zimmer, Matt Stirlein, Dana Floyd, Leslie Roark and Sean Roark.

L.E.A.D. drew participants from 30 states. Its Texas delegation included (from left) Peter Hirsch, MAS; D’Anna Zimmer; Matt Storlien; Dana Floyd; Leslie Roark, CAS, and Sean Roark.

“The three meetings I was involved in today were right on task,” says Brad Ness, president of Fargo, North Dakota’s S & S Promotional Group. “We had some good conversations about independent contractors and the overtime rules, and they remembered us from last year and some of the things I told them in those visits. One of the aides I visited with thanked me for the hand sanitizer I gave her last year—she remembered it. The word is getting out about our industry.”

Left: Among her meetings on Capitol Hill, Dana Floyd, director of information services at SAGE met with Texas Rep. Pete Sessions. Right: Aaron Blake, Washington Post political reporter, presented a Capitol Hill insider’s look at the 2016 presidential campaign during the opening luncheon on Wednesday.

Left: Among her meetings on Capitol Hill, Dana Floyd, director of information services at SAGE, met with Texas Rep. Pete Sessions. Right: Aaron Blake, Washington Post political reporter, presented a Capitol Hill insider’s look at the 2016 presidential campaign during the opening luncheon on Wednesday.

While visiting the office of Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, HALO Branded Solutions’ Regional Vice President, Mid-Atlantic, Eric Ekstrand, MAS+, and Vice President of Sales Dale Limes, MAS, pulled out a one-piece baby sleeper with “THIS SIDE UP” printed on the front and began to explain how the garment helped decrease infant mortality rates in Columbus, Ohio.

“The staffer’s eyes got big when we told her this case story,” says Ekstrand. “She told us that Rep. Ryan was going to be in a committee meeting tomorrow requesting continued funding to prevent infant mortality. She saw the garment and said, ‘That’s so perfect! I’m going to use this visual to get our point across.’”

While in D.C., L.E.A.D. participants Ryan Small, Perry Wherle, D’Anna Zimmer, Michael Salvio, Eric Ekstrand, Jolie Porter, Jane Mitchell and Michele Jennrich met with Sen. Ted Cruz.

While in D.C., L.E.A.D. participants Ryan Small, CAS; Perry Wehrle; D’Anna Zimmer; Michael Salvio; Eric Ekstrand, MAS+; Jolie Porter; Jane Mitchell, CAS; and Michele Jennrich, MAS, bumped into Sen. Ted Cruz (center) at a local restaurant.

As part of L.E.A.D.’s goal of growing and protecting the promotional products industry, the Association is also hosting a virtual fly-in to give industry members an opportunity to voice their concerns about legislation and policy that affect their business and the promotional products industry as a whole. Find out more about L.E.A.D. and the virtual fly-in at www.ppailaw.org. Follow L.E.A.D. on social media on Twitter @PPAILAW and use the hashtag #PPAILEAD. Read more about participants’ experiences and outcomes in next Tuesday’s issue of PPB Newslink.

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