Building Relationships on the Hill and at Home
MESSAGE FROM NAFA
This year, we held NAFA’s annual Annuity Leadership Forum (ALF) June 8-10 in Washington, D.C., hosting more than 125 members for record attendance. More importantly, those members held more than 250 face-to-face meetings in the offices of elected officials from the House and Senate to reiterate our concerns about the detrimental effects the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule stands to have on businesses throughout our industry and, ultimately, the future of consumer retirement.
While we are currently fighting the DOL rule on many fronts, including through litigation and by working with our fellow trade groups and others, we must continue our outreach efforts to elected officials. It’s important to keep this issue at the forefront of our Senators and Representatives by asking them for help to stop or significantly alter the DOL rule.
While I was in Washington, D.C. at our ALF meeting, I met with my U.S. Representative from my district in Missouri. In addition to meeting her personally, I also met with her staff members and together we had a great discussion on the DOL rule. She was up to speed on the rule and communicated that she fully supports NAFA’s position. As I was leaving her office, I explained that my nephew was a Missouri State Representative from our district back home, whom she knew and had endorsed during his last campaign. She told me that she would be attending a fundraiser back home While we are currently fighting the DOL rule on many fronts, including through litigation and by working with our fellow trade groups and others, we must continue our outreach efforts to elected officials. in a few weeks and we agreed to meet again at the event. Before I returned home to Kansas City, I got an email from her inviting me to a breakfast (fundraiser) back home with some of her key advisors. I immediately accepted her invitation and attended the event, where I was surprised to learn that the breakfast was for 10 people, all important leaders in the Kansas City area. We spent an hour-and-a-half discussing important issues and getting to know each other well. Among those in attendance were the head of a large construction firm, a partner in a large CPA firm, and several other business owners with firms of hundreds of employees. What a great way to meet other key players in my community! I followed up with a “thank you” email after the event and received a nice reply to further solidify the relationship with my Representative.
My point here is that developing relationships with our elected officials is imperative, and it starts with just one meeting. I urge you to visit your Representatives while they are back home in your district, at the federal level and also at the state level. After all, we will have other critical issues where we will need their support long after the DOL rule has been resolved. Without quality relationships established over time, we will not get our voice heard.
Reach out and let your elected officials know how you feel about the issues that are important to you, your family and your business. If I can develop these relationships, I am certain you can, too. Thank you for your support.
Executive Director, NAFA