The 17th annual TechNet Day was a terrific success. Thank you to the 20 executives who made the trip to Washington, D.C., for a full day of meetings on Wednesday with leading federal policymakers to discuss our sector’s most pressing issues. The robust turnout among administration and congressional leaders was due to the diverse and impressive group of tech leaders in attendance. This executive engagement strengthens our advocacy efforts tremendously. A recap of the day’s meetings can be found below.
To kick off the day, two of TechNet’s Executive Council members — John Chambers, Founder & CEO of JC2 Ventures and Co-founder of TechNet, and Kevin Mandia, CEO of FireEye — appeared live on CNBC. The two executives previewed the day’s agenda and outlined the policy solutions we need for the U.S. to maintain our global leadership in tech.
TechNet Day executive participants and member company representatives gathered at the historic Decatur House for our annual membership meeting and a discussion with top American pollsters Glen Bolger and Geoff Garin, the bipartisan duo that conducts the Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, about the political landscape ahead of the 2018 midterm elections and public opinion of the technology industry.
Our executives then moved on to the White House to meet with several members of the President’s senior staff, including Justin Clark, Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Office of Public Liaison; Michael Kratsios, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy U.S. Chief Technology Officer; Abigail Slater, Special Assistant to the President for Technology, Telecommunications, and Cybersecurity Policy; Mathew Lira, Special Assistant to the President for Innovation Policy and Initiatives; and Steve Pinkos, Staff Secretary to the Vice President and Deputy Director of Domestic Policy. The conversation focused on tax policy, immigration reform, cybersecurity, computer science and STEM education, trade, autonomous vehicles, and smart infrastructure, among other issues.
Following the White House, we proceeded to Capitol Hill for the bulk of our TechNet Day meetings.
Each of the Capitol Hill discussions was wide ranging and included robust exchanges on our top priorities: immigration reform, trade, cybersecurity, education and workforce development, autonomous vehicles, advanced energy, and infrastructure modernization.
First, we convened a luncheon discussion with members of the Problem Solvers Caucus. Participants included Problem Solvers Caucus Co-chair Tom Reed (R-NY) and Representatives Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), Jared Polis (D-CO), and Jacky Rosen (D-NV). As reaching across the aisle becomes increasingly less common, their demonstration of and commitment to bipartisan cooperation was refreshing.
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA) then convened seven of her top lieutenants for an interactive discussion on our priorities. Participants included Representatives Joe Crowley (NY), Anna Eshoo (CA), Steny Hoyer (MD), Zoe Lofgren (CA), Jerry Nadler (NJ), Richard Neal (MA), and Bobby Scott (VA).
A meeting of 17 Senate Democrats was then convened by Senate Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee Chairman Amy Klobuchar (MN). Participants included Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (NY) and Senators Michael Bennet (CO), Richard Blumenthal (CT), Tom Carper (DE), Chris Coons (DE), Dick Durbin (IL), Kamala Harris (CA), Joe Manchin (WV), Ed Markey (MA), Patty Murray (WA), Bill Nelson (FL), Debbie Stabenow (MI), Tina Smith (MN), Mark Warner (VA), Sheldon Whitehouse (RI), and Ron Wyden (OR).
Senator Orrin Hatch (UT), Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Republican High-Tech Task Force, then led a meeting of Republican Senators. Participants included Mike Lee (UT), Rob Portman (OH), Dan Sullivan (AK), and Todd Young (IN).
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA) and Representative Will Hurd (TX) hosted our final meeting of leading House Republicans. Participants included Representatives Marsha Blackburn (TN), Doug Collins (GA), Barbara Comstock (VA), Leonard Lance (NJ), Michael McCaul (TX), Erik Paulsen (MN), and Kevin Yoder (KS).
TechNet Day was capped off with a reception recognizing the service of Senator Orrin Hatch (UT), the longest serving Republican senator in history, in the U.S. Capitol’s storied Lyndon Baines Johnson Room. TechNet President and CEO Linda Moore, John Chambers, Kevin Mandia, and Senator Hatch gave remarks that underscored the importance of the day’s activities.
As part of our TechNet Day goal of building
support and momentum for our pro-innovation agenda, TechNet amplified our
message in the media through op-eds, interviews, and social media. Below is a roundup of notable coverage
highlighting our efforts.
Now More Than Ever, the U.S. Must Reclaim Leadership in Tech
Op-ed by John Chambers, JC2 Ventures Founder & CEO
April 8, 2018
the Best Way to Create Jobs and Growth in the U.S.
Op-ed by Bruce Aust, Nasdaq Vice Chairman
April 13, 2018
Atlanta's Cyberattack Underscores Our Nation's Cyber Insecurity
Op-ed by Linda Moore, TechNet President & CEO
April 13, 2018
Innovation in America: Tech Heads to the Hill
TechNet Holds Fly-in