PFMA and the Pennsylvania Distributors Association (PDA) held a joint meeting on October 20 and 21 at the West Shore Country Club in Camp Hill to discuss the possibility of merging the groups. Both associations are concerned with many of the same legislative and regulatory issues.
Some board members enjoyed a day of golf and later convened for a reception and dinner featuring guest speakers Ann Holloway, vice president of government affairs, and Dirk Smith, director of state government affairs for the Convenience Distribution Association (CDA).
Holloway shared the many federal issues of concern to members, including health care, tobacco regulations and food safety. In addition, consolidation is causing major changes in the industry. Earlier this year CDA changed its name from the American Wholesale Marketers Association to better communicate the work of the association. The group also hired Dirk Smith to handle state government affairs and updated its website with better advocacy tools.
On October 21, the groups met individually and in a combined. They voted to explore the possibility of a merger.
Before lunch, the groups heard from Philadelphia Daily News columnist John Baer. He shared many anecdotes from his many years covering politics at the capitol.
Following lunch, Lt. Governor Mike Stack stopped by to meet the group and to discuss his role on the Board of Pardons and the Emergency Management Council, as well as his role as business developer and job creater.