The Small Business Legislative Council (SBLC) has named C.E. “Tee” Rowe, president of America’s Small Business Development Centers, chair effective February 15. An annually elected position, Rowe succeeds John Grau, chief executive officer of the National Electrical Contractors Association.

The mission of the SBLC, of which PPAI is a member and for which PPAI President and CEO Paul Bellantone, CAE, serves as a board director, is twofold: to make improvements in public policy for small business and to help member associations in their communications with business members.

The SBLC has announced that its top priorities for 2017 will be improving health care, tax reform, and infrastructure. Rowe says, “We expect 2017 to be an important year in Washington. Because of the power of our unique permanent coalition representing all sectors of our economy, we will play a major role in providing a voice for our nation’s small and privately-owned businesses. As chair, I look forward to helping the SBLC continue to grow in 2017.”

Outgoing chair Grau introduced the SBLC’s new membership-engagement plan, stating this “will engage all SBLC members in dialogue important to our associations.” It will also allow the members to “get to know each other as peers.”

“John Grau, as our 2016 chair, played a significant role in advancing the SBLC’s agenda. He is an outstanding leader and voice for small business,” says SBLC President and General Counsel Paula Calimafde, Esq. “We expect that under Tee Rowe’s leadership the SBLC will continue to grow even stronger.”