Topical Thoughts from MICPA President & CEO, Bob Doyle What About...Bob?

We Have Certainly Been “On the Road” in Michigan

 

Wow, has it been a whirlwind the last several weeks! We have literally been “On the Road” meeting with our members, hosting grassroots advocacy discussions, and participating in the Mackinac Policy Conference. It’s been a great experience that I wanted to reflect on:

What better place to kick off our town hall series than in our hometown of Troy on May 5th. It was awesome to have 50+ of our members there, live and in person, along with even more than that on our simulcast from across Michigan. It gave us an opportunity to talk about MICPA activities, as well as provide an update on the profession and our advocacy efforts. The MICPA’s VP of Government Relations Rachel Reardon taught the Michigan Specific Ethics course, which always results in great questions and conversation from our members! Finally, I would like to thank Thomson Reuters who partnered with us on our series, providing a course on building advisory relationships.

After a trip to Austin, TX, for my first in-person AICPA Council meeting, we were off to Traverse City from May 23-24. There we held a grassroots advocacy happy-hour event with Traverse Connect. These events are a fantastic opportunity to meet with local elected officials to talk about issues impacting the business community and discuss solutions. We’ve even had legislation come as a result of these meeting discussions. Partnering with chambers allows us to provide networking opportunities for members as well. In Traverse City, we had Rep. Jack O’Malley, Rep. John Damoose, Rep. John Roth, and Sen. Wayne Schmidt join us for an excellent panel discussion. The next morning was our town hall which went really well! While in town we had a couple of firm visits, and I would be remiss to not mention the delicious craft beer we enjoyed at a local establishment!

The week after Memorial Day was the annual Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference. Rachel and I attended with two of our board members. It was a great event, the weather was perfect, the conference speakers were fantastic, and we were able to meet with many of our elected officials, including the four Michigan quadrant leaders (Sen. Shirkey, Sen. Ananich, Rep. Wentworth, and Rep. Lasinski). We also had a chance to meet with Rep. Haley Stevens, whose bill on adding accounting to STEM is currently in committee in Washington, D.C. As you can imagine we are big supporters of that bill! The conference had some fabulous networking opportunities, which included a lunch we hosted for all our members that were on Mackinac Island that week.

The next week it was back on the road to Grand Rapids, where we hosted a grassroots breakfast with Rep. Mary Whiteford and Rep. Luke Meerman, then rolled into our town hall immediately after that. Again, amazing conversations, and we enjoyed more craft beer while in town! (Are you sensing a theme here?) It was wonderful to partner with the Grand Rapids Chamber on this event which was hosted in their beautiful offices in downtown GR.

Then today we’re in Lansing, where we partnered with the Lansing Chamber on our grassroots advocacy breakfast that featured Sen. Hertel and Rep. Sarah Anthony, followed by the town hall. I always love going to Lansing, not only for our advocacy activities but it feels like I’m coming home since I grew up not far away in Grand Ledge!

We’re now taking a little break, then our series will start back up again on August 15th in Battle Creek in conjunction with the MICPA Small Firm Practitioners Conference. This fall we’ll be off to Frankenmuth on October 25th, followed by our trip through the UP with a stop in Marquette on October 27th. We’re looking forward to it!

It has been a great experience getting out, meeting with our members, and learning from them. Thank you to all who have participated, and we look forward to seeing you again soon out “On the Road”!

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