Fall 2018 President’s Letter

Giving Our Members A Voice

A Letter From the AAF-Baton Rouge President

AAF is often referred to as the “Unifying Voice for Advertising.” Here in Baton Rouge, we take this adage seriously. In addition to networking opportunities and professional development programs, AAF is committed to protecting and promoting advertising interests across all levels of government.

Headquartered in Washington D.C., AAF National constantly works with legislators on issues concerning the advertising industry including ad tax, mobile marketing, and data security. In a similar manner, AAF-Baton Rouge uses our geographical advantage to directly meet with state representatives here in our state’s capital. Last month, Immediate Past President and Government Relations Chair Theresa Nguyen attended Grub With Garret, a roundtable lunch discussion, with Congressman Garret Graves to discuss priorities and ideas surrounding current issues. Having AAF representation in these public forums establishes rapport with the local government in the event AAF-Baton Rouge needs to lobby on your behalf.

In 2013 a state commission proposed an amendment that would tax advertising services. By utilizing the resources of our club AAF-BR appeared before the commission with a simple and logical argument: advertising is the engine that fuels the economy. On an annual basis it generates $88.6 billion in economic activity and produces on average 282,360 jobs in Louisiana. Less advertising means fewer sales. Fewer sales mean reduced revenue, fewer jobs and less sales tax revenue for the state. After hearing this argument the committee decided to remove the tax amendment from consideration. This victory would not have been possible without your membership dollars funding our mission.

With what’s at stake it’s crucial for our local club to maintain strong ties with elected officials. The Government Relations committee is in the process of planning an inaugural “Louisiana Day on the Hill” on April 9, 2019 here in Baton Rouge. This event will demonstrate the power and passion of local advertising members to local lawmakers. Stay tuned to your inbox for details as we continue to plan this exciting initiative.

In the upcoming year I urge all of our members to take an active role in advocacy by staying educated on issues that involve our industry and participating in the Louisiana Day on the Hill. Through this unified effort we will make sure that you have a voice and that it is heard.

Patrick Box

AAF-Baton Rouge President