Local Banking Exec Christine Nowaczyk Helps Guide ACG Global Board of Directors
PHOENIX (December 10, 2020) — How can a high-profile networking group based on personal connections manage a pandemic? The Association for Corporate Growth-Arizona Chapter is becoming a great example.
ACG Arizona, which is marking its 15th year of existence, was forced to go almost completely virtual when the pandemic hit in March. The group, which consists of more than 100 professionals in the mergers and acquisitions field, was holding more than two dozen in-person meetings each year as part of a global network of chapters.
When the pandemic hit, the organization pivoted in several key ways in order to stay connected to its membership:
— The group’s monthly events went virtual, but rather than just relying on Zoom calls, many of them were produced in a socially distanced manner in a professional studio, enhancing the overall quality of the content.
— ACG Arizona also added several new events, including a members-only “Cup of Coffee” series and a new Women in Business and Leadership series in partnership with two other ACG chapters.
— And, the group focused on more personal connections through unique interactive events including a virtual wine tasting event focused on private equity.
“We have worked very diligently to find ways to make sure our members stay connected during this challenging time,” said Elise Thorpe, ACG Arizona Board President and Principal with Lovitt & Touché, A Marsh & McLennan Insurance Agency LLC. “We have put a strong emphasis on the quality of our content and providing opportunities for high-level networking in the virtual space.”
ACG Global, the parent organization of ACG Arizona, also implemented a number of changes to adapt for the pandemic. One important step was a restructuring of its board governance, which included ACG Arizona President-Emeritus and local banking executive Christine Nowaczyk playing a key role on the Global board.
ACG Global also created a new Chapter Council to help chapters such as the Arizona chapter to meet the challenges created by the pandemic, and has significantly invested in increased online and digital content to provide to its members. And, it has increased its focus on diversity and inclusion through a Board subcommittee addressing the issue and programs hosted by chapters specific to the issues.
“It has been gratifying to see the Global organization work so diligently to respond in an effective manner to the challenges we are seeing in the pandemic, and I am pleased to be able to play a role in that planning,” said Nowaczyk, who serves as Arizona Banking Executive for BOK Financial. “We have been focused on making the Global leadership more nimble and responsive during the pandemic, and the results to date have really had a positive impact on the organization’s overall health.”
ACG Arizona has a number of programs and initiatives coming up in the first quarter of 2021. It will continue its Young Dealmaker and Women in Business and Leadership programs, and has launched an M&A 101 series for younger professionals. On January 19, the group will host its next major virtual event, an Economic Forecast presentation by Jim Glassman, economist with JP Morgan Chase.
The group will be carefully following the progress of COVID-19 vaccinations before determining when to go back to full in-person events.
“We’re hopeful that by the second quarter we will be able to host more in-person activities, including potentially our Spring Social, which is a Spring Training game,” Thorpe said. “We will look at every option we can to make sure we are serving our members in the most effective and productive manner possible.”Founded in 1954, the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) is a global association for professionals involved in corporate growth, corporate development, and mergers and acquisitions. Today ACG stands at more than 14,000 members from corporations, private equity, finance, and professional service firms representing Fortune 500, Fortune 1000, FTSE 100, and mid-market companies in 56 chapters in North America, Europe, and Asia. The Arizona chapter of ACG includes representatives from corporate investment and private equity groups, financiers, venture capitalists and supporting consultant services. For more information, visit www.acg.org/arizona.