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2023 Vistage on the Hill with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Tuesday, July 25, 2023 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. EDT

Event Overview

**Event by invitation only**

Congratulations! You are among an elite group of Vistage Member Excellence Award winners selected to be a representative of the Vistage community at Vistage on the Hill, an in-person event with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Monday, July 24, and Tuesday, July 25, 2023. Space is limited to 15 Vistage Member Excellence Award winners on a first-come, first-served basis. This event is by invitation only. The day will feature several U.S. Chamber of Commerce policy experts presenting on key issues including small business policy, international policy and more, with time for Q&A and an exclusive, iconic D.C. experience. More than just representing Vistage, this is a chance to gather feedback and learnings pertinent to what you’re facing in business and beyond. You can then share these insights with your group.

Event Speakers

Allison L. Dembeck

Vice President of Education and Labor Advocacy, Government Affairs

Allison L. Dembeck is vice president of education and labor advocacy in the Government Affairs Division at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, focusing on education, labor, and workforce development issues.

Before coming to the Chamber in September 2012, Dembeck was the education, labor, pensions, and welfare policy analyst on the Senate Republican Policy Committee—first under the chairmanship of Sen. John Thune (R-SD) and then under the chairmanship of Sen. John Barasso (R-WY). Previously, she spent several years as a legislative assistant for Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH), handling education, labor, pension, and child and family issues. She also was manager of government relations for Ceridian Corporation, focusing on pension, health care, and payroll compliance.

In addition, Dembeck did two stints with the House of Representatives Committee on Education and the Workforce—the first during former Speaker of the House John Boehner’s (R-OH) tenure as committee chairman and the second under Rep. John Kline (R-MN).

She is a former adjunct faculty member of Montgomery College in Maryland. She has an M.A. from The George Washington University and a B.A. from Binghamton University-State University of New York (SUNY).

Tom Sullivan

Vice President, Small Business Policy

Thomas M. Sullivan is vice president of small business policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Working with chambers of commerce and the U.S. Chamber’s nationwide network, Sullivan harnesses the views of small businesses and translates that grassroots power into federal policies that bolster free enterprise and reward entrepreneurship. He runs the U.S. Chamber’s Small Business Council, engaging those members on a regular basis to increase small business input and involvement in Chamber activities.

Previously, Sullivan was an attorney in the government relations practice of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP, a law firm with a major East Coast presence from Tallahassee to Boston. Before rejoining Nelson Mullins, he served as general counsel for the Bipartisan Policy Center, a nonprofit organization founded in 2007 by former Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole, and George Mitchell.

Sullivan represented several firm clients before Congress and federal agencies and built a small business advocacy platform that included the Coalition for Responsible Business Finance, a group of non-bank small business providers, and the Small Business Coalition for Regulatory Relief.

Sullivan served under President George W. Bush as the highest-ranking government official charged with exclusively advocating the views and needs of small business before government agencies and Congress. As chief counsel for advocacy at the U.S. Small Business Administration, he was directly involved in more than 100 regulatory and legislative matters, testified frequently before congressional committees, and was a spokesman on economic conditions and entrepreneurship. The hallmark of his tenure at SBA was a national legislative initiative guaranteeing that small business has a voice in state regulatory decisions.

Upon leaving government, Sullivan was named to the National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center Advisory Board, and he serves on the board of directors of the Global Entrepreneurship Network, a platform of programs and initiatives aimed at creating an entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Sullivan earned his Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School in 1993 and a Bachelor of Arts in English in 1989 from Boston College. He lives in Virginia with his wife and two sons.

Isabelle Icso

Director, International Policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Isabelle Icso advocates for the Chamber’s international trade and investment priorities before the administration, Congress, and foreign governments. She focuses on U.S.-China relations, efforts surrounding the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, Russia-related sanctions, and the World Trade Organization, among others. Icso works alongside leaders in the International Affairs Division to execute advocacy actions with a country or region-specific focus.

Before joining the Chamber, Icso was a trade and tax policy analyst with D.C. investment firm Height Capital Markets where she analyzed policy moves and market implications.

Earlier in her career, she was a reporter with Inside U.S. Trade for roughly five years. There her coverage focused on Capitol Hill activity, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and Trade Promotion Authority. In addition, she covered U.S. trade talks with Japan, Korea, and Brazil as well as international summits like the G20, G7, and OECD.

Isabelle also has experience with the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee where she provided in-depth research on the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

She completed her bachelor’s degree in international business at the University of Rochester and her master’s from the Simon Business School there. She resides in Washington, D.C., with her husband.

Michael Richards

Director, Policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC)

Michael Richards is director of policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC). He manages the Chamber’s artificial intelligence and IT modernization work, which analyzes federal artificial intelligence, facial recognition, and IT modernization policy impacting U.S. businesses. Richards also directs the Chamber’s AI Policy Working Group, which comprises over 100 companies and trade associations, which has developed AI principles.

Before joining the Chamber, Richards served as deputy chief of staff and legislative director for Rep. Scott Franklin (FL-15) and served in the same role for Rep. Pete Olson (TX -22) before his retirement. Richards was the lead staffer for Olson’s work as co-chair of the House AI Caucus and the Victims’ Rights Caucus. He also handled the Communication & Technology portfolio for the congressman within the Energy and Commerce Committee.

Richards earned his undergraduate degree at Texas State University and his Master of Public Policy from Pepperdine School of Public Policy.


U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Monday, July 24th

6 :00 - 8:30 p.m.
Welcome Reception & Dinner hosted by Vistage

Tuesday, July 25th

9:00 - 9:30 a.m.
Breakfast | U.S. Chamber of Commerce

10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Policy Briefings

Lunch to be served.

3 - 9 p.m.
D.C. Experience | Closing Reception & Dinner

*agenda subject to change



U.S. Chamber of Commerce
1615 H Street, NW
Washington, D.C.