GEIA President Dan Heinemeier is excited at the prospect of the new capability, and about building upon the strong heritage of the EIA Government Relations program to augment and enhance GEIA’s already well established membership services. “These enhanced resources will provide us with a premier ability under GEIA auspices to address public policy issues on Capitol Hill and throughout the Executive Agencies,” said Heinemeier. “GEIA will benefit hugely from this added capability, and we enthusiastically welcome a number of experienced EIA Government Relations professionals to our team.”
EIA served for many years as a national alliance of high-tech trade associations serving the technology industries by addressing domestic and international policy matters. Recently, the EIA Board of Governors approved a plan to bolster the services provided by EIA’s member associations so that they can better support the U.S. technology industry. EIA will now liquidate its assets and distribute them to founding sectors, including GEIA, for their use in dramatically enhancing their ability to meet distinct objectives such as improved advocacy in Washington. Among the prominent players bringing their Government Relations expertise to GEIA are Susan Tonner and Nick Paliokas, while Storme Street will work with GEIA in a consulting capacity.
With over 20 years of experience in the Federal policy environment, Susan Tonner has addressed a wealth of public policy issues in Federal acquisition and procurement, lobbying,compliance, and ethics policies, as well as marketing to the U.S. Government. Susan was elected in 2006 to chair the Acquisition Reform Working Group (ARWG), in conjunction with her former role as Director of Government Relations at EIA – both positions provided broad opportunities to serve the interests of Federal solutions providers in the electronics and IT industries. Susan will continue her support to the Government Procurement Relations Council, now under GEIA auspices.
Nick Paliokas has served in the Government relations arena covering policy issues ranging from H-1B and employment-based green card reform to patent and intellectual property protection. Having worked for Senator Debbie Stabenow, Nick previously was involved in legislative reporting and tracking for an extensive list of clients; his initial focus at GEIA will be International Trade policy plus other areas in support of GEIA’s public policy goals. Former Vice President of EIA’s Government Relations Department, Storme Street, will also be working as a consultant to GEIA as the newly expanded Government Relations function continues to grow. Her primary responsibilities will be in the areas of tax and trade policy.
“This is a tremendous boost for us,” said Heinemeier. “Through active support and representation in the regulatory and legislative fields, our newly-formed GR department provides a tremendous opportunity for GEIA members to influence change and promote solutions that benefit our industry and government clients alike.”
Tonner echoed those sentiments.
“This connection provides a clear advantage to GEIA members through enhanced advocacy on the Hill and in the agencies as well,” said Tonner. “It is important that our government relations member participants and senior executives alike understand the value that this relationship adds to the association. We intend to dive right in and begin to make a difference on key public policy issues being addressed this fall in the Executive Branch and on Capitol Hill.”
In adding this enhanced capability, GEIA intends to maintain its historical focus on promoting clear and unbiased idea and information exchange so that association members and Federal decision-makers can more openly and effectively communicate. The expanded government relations focus will only promote the ability of GEIA’s member companies to deliver effective solutions to Government customers.
About the Government Electronics and Information Technology Association (GEIA) GEIA is a trade association representing the “high-tech” industry doing business with government. Our member companies are active in serving the electronics-and information technology-related needs of government customers. We connect industry to government through a unique forecasting process, conducting hundreds of customer interviews in which our companies directly participate. We analyze and issue reports on the federal market for IT solutions, technologies, and advanced electronics product and services of all kinds, producing: An annual 10- Year Defense Forecast; and annual 5-Year Federal IT forecast; and special studies of the government market such as Services & Support and Homeland Security. Visit www.geia.org for more details.