Washington, D.C. — Testifying before a U.S. Senate committee today, Merchants Metals Inc. Chief Executive Officer Andrea Hogan urged the adoption of a National Strategic Agenda, championed by the non-partisan citizen-advocacy group “No Labels.” Headquartered in Atlanta with manufacturing facilities and distribution centers located across the country, Merchants Metals Inc. is one of the largest fencing system manufacturers and distributors in North America. Hogan’s testimony was part of a hearing held by the Committee on Homeland Security & Government Affairs’ entitled, “Governing Through Goal Setting: Enhancing the Economic and National Security of America.” Other panelists included the Honorable Joseph Lieberman, former Senator and co-chair of No Labels; the Honorable Jon Huntsman, Jr., former Governor of Utah and co-chair of No Labels; and Andrew Tisch, co-Chairman of the Board of the Loews Corporation.
No Labels and its National Strategic Agenda are non-partisan and focused squarely on advancing a framework of goals and solutions to make Washington DC – and America – work. The agenda highlighted at today’s hearing includes policy proposals aimed at achieving four objectives: creating 25 million new jobs over the next 10 years, balancing the federal budget by 2030, securing Medicare and Social Security for another 75 years, and making America energy secure by 2024.
In her remarks before the Committee, Hogan outlined her views on good governance and leadership, the need for collaborative goal setting, and developing strategies and tactics to achieve an organization’s goals.
“For those of us privileged to lead great organizations, trying to run an enterprise successfully without first establishing and communicating the key goals and objectives is inconceivable,” Hogan said. “I know of no business that can succeed long-term without a clear vision of what success looks like, a shared, goal-driven agenda of strategic imperatives, and a defined set of tactics aimed at achieving the organization’s goals. And yet, remarkably, the largest ‘enterprise’ in the world; the United States of America – all $17 trillion of it in economic output terms, operates precisely this way today. We can’t allow this to be the case anymore.”
Resolutions have been introduced in both the Senate and the House of Representatives calling on lawmakers of both parties to make goal-setting a primary component of the way that each chamber does business, and to establish a National Strategic Agenda. In the House, H. Res. 207 introduced by Rep. Reed (R-NY) and Rep. Bera (D-CA), already has 43 bipartisan cosponsors. A companion Resolution has recently been introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Bill Nelson (D-FL) and John Thune (R-SD).
Hogan added that swift adoption of an agreed-upon plan is vital for manufacturing businesses like Merchants Metals and the nation as a whole. As she told the Committee, “The gridlock in Washington has made it much harder for businesses such as Merchants Metals to execute against our most basic needs – finding qualified workers, developing cost effective ways to get products to market, and accessing credit.”
“Our economy is still not humming but we’ve navigated the post-crisis era better than most countries; a testament to our resilience as a people and our strength as a nation. But we need a plan. A federal government that adopts a plan – and demonstrates progress towards its goals – instills confidence in the population and, in turn, fuels new innovation, risk taking, and growth.”
“Absent that firm foundation, we wait, we postpone, we take the safer path, or we take no path at all.”
“There is so much untapped potential at Merchants Metals and thousands of businesses like ours that can be unleashed by our government re-building a sturdy economic foundation and renewing confidence in a functioning federal government.”
“If you do your job here I can guarantee you, American business leaders will do ours,” Hogan said.
About Merchants Metals
Merchants Metals Inc., or MMI, is one of North America’s largest fencing system manufacturers and distributors. Headquartered in Atlanta, the company has manufacturing facilities located in Houston, Texas; Statesville, North Carolina; Harrison, Arkansas; New Paris, Indiana; and Mexicali, CP, Mexico as well as 39 strategically-located distribution facilities across 26 states. With over 600 associates, the company offers the industry’s largest selection of premium quality fence product solutions for industrial, commercial, high-security and residential applications.