Fifth Annual Washington, DC Fly-In Brings Together Policymakers
and Toy Industry
May 21, 2012 |
The U.S. toy industry’s annual total
economic impact in the U.S. is nearly $80.9 billion. Individual economic
impact reports for each state can be found in the Toy Biz section of the TIA website.
Representatives of 31 small, mid-size
and large toy companies made their way to the nation’s capital
last week to attend the Toy Industry Association’s (TIA) 5th Annual Washington, DC Fly-In
. The nearly
three-dozen delegates met with federal lawmakers and regulators to
discuss the toy industry’s unique legislative needs and the vital
role that it plays in the U.S. economy.
Held on May 15-16, the 2012 Fly-In began with a tour of a Consumer
Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Testing Lab and a peek inside the
Beltway during a speech delivered by political commentator Chris
Matthews, host of The Chris Matthews Show and MSNBC’s
Special guest Anne Northup (R-KY), CPSC Commissioner and former
Member of Congress, set the tone for a day on Capitol Hill with her
opening remarks, counseling Fly-In participants to be clear in their
messages to federal legislators. Commissioner Northup highlighted the
event as an important opportunity for lawmakers to hear directly from
their constituents and urged participants to tell lawmakers about the
impact that potential legislation could have on their businesses.
On Capitol Hill, an incredibly busy day unfolded with nearly 25 small
group meetings of toy industry stakeholders with Senators,
Representatives and their staffs. There was an active exchange of
information about key topics ranging from toy safety and chemical
regulations to environmental sustainability and protecting the privacy
of children online.
“I felt so privileged representing TIA and walking in the
footsteps of American history on Capitol Hill,” said Dr. Lisa
Williams, CEO of World of EPI. “Meeting with politicians and
their aides was among the highlights of the day.”
In addition to the CPSC commissioner and legislator meetings, formal
remarks from other special guests during the event included Senator
Richard Blumenthal (D-CT); Kevin Brady (R-TX), Chairman of the House
Ways & Means Subcommittee on Trade; Staff Director of the House Ways
& Means Committee; and staff from the Senate Commerce Committee.
“TIA’s Fifth Annual Washington, DC Fly-In was a huge
success for everyone who attended,” said Ed Desmond, TIA executive
vice president of external affairs. “Our loaded schedule
featured highly regarded speakers and one-of-a-kind opportunities for
participants to engage directly with Washington policymakers in small
Photos of the 2012 Fly-In will be made available on the TIA website in the next few days; details about
the 2013 event will be announced in early 2013.