The theme “Going for the Gold” was perfect for this pre-2014 Winter Olympics event—the 17th Annual DBA International Conference. It was held at the Aria in Las Vegas, with the keynote address provided by Mark Spitz, one of the most recognizable Olympic athletes of all time. A few of his remarks that resonated with me include:
- Live as if your glass is half-full rather than half-empty. Early in my career with NL, Randy Nicola, my boss and a very wise man, once asked me: “Is your glass half-full or half-empty?” I chose to live my life, both personally and professionally, considering that my glass is half-full. Yes, there are challenging times, but it’s how I deal with those challenges that define me.
- Constantly check your direction. Do you know where you want to go, both personally and professionally? Are you on track? Our lives and businesses are constantly evolving, so we need to be sure we are still on the path that will take us there. Is what you are doing today the best use of your time and money? Do you need to diversify? Try something new? Check your path!
- Destiny is not by chance but by the choices we make. Every decision we make, good or bad, defines our destiny. We make our own choices and our own challenges, based on those decisions…so choose wisely.
- Always challenge yourself & be in the driver’s seat. Life and business are what you put in to them. Control your own destiny!
The DBA Conference was a great experience. As a first-time-ever attendee, I immediately felt welcomed – from the very nice lady at the registration booth who, after finding out I was a first timer, personally walked me to the Ambassador table—to each of the NL clients and attorney members that I was able to finally meet in person.
Pre-Conf. Agenda 2/5
DBA began with a “Current Topics Program – The Debt Collection Drill Live,” with speakers John Rossman, Mike Poncin and Michael Bahner. “This podcast series is one of the most popular sources for information in the debt industry with tens of thousands of downloads and an audience that spans the globe.” Presented live for the first time, this fast-paced and interactive session provided many wise tips for listeners. Also included that day were sessions divided into a Debt Buying Track and an Attorney Track. The day concluded with an opening reception.
Annual Conf. Agenda 2/6-7
Highlights of the Annual Conference included:
- CFPB: A Conversation: a question and answer program that focused on Rulemaking, Supervision/ Examination and Consumer Response.
- State Legislative & Regulatory Activities
- Federal Legislative & Regulatory Activities
- Designing a CFPB Compliance Program
- Keynote Presentation by Professor Todd Zywicki: “Debt Collection and the Ecosystem of Consumer Credit: Economic and Legal Perspectives on Collection and its Regulation”
- The Best Defense is a Good Offense: Practical Advice & Latest Developments
on the TCPA, and How to Avoid Becoming a Defendant
DBA International elected Bryan Faliero as president. “Attending the annual conference I was able to appreciate the diversity of our organization, our contributions to America’s credit economy, and the need to ensure that all in our industry recommit to treating consumers with respect,” said Faliero. “With so many people just getting back on their feet, debt collection requires sensitivity to the hardship that so many are working to put behind them.”
During my visits with DBA participants (vendors, clients, attorney members), one common theme I heard was that everyone related to the “Constantly check your direction” quote from Mr. Spitz. The collection industry has changed. But it is how each and every business/law firm is responding to those changes that continues to define us. So I say, in behalf of the debt collection industry, “Yes, our glass is half-full!”
By Leslie Herr, NL Systems Administrator