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February 11, 2015
Past Issues

Nominees sought for grievance commission, disciplinary board

Under the authority of Iowa Court Rules 35.1 and 35.2, the Iowa Supreme Court has asked the ISBA, as one of several lawyer organizations in the state, to provide nominees for its Attorney Disciplinary Board and Grievance Commission. The nominees are needed to fill vacancies for terms beginning July 1.

Two lawyer positions are open on the disciplinary board and a number of positions are open on the grievance commission. Vacancies exist in nine of the 14 judicial election subdistricts. See all available positions here.

To be considered for nomination, please complete and submit the ISBA nominations online form. Alternatively, you can email the information, using the online form as a guide, to Be sure to put "Board/Commission Nominee” in the subject line.

All nominations must reach the ISBA office by Friday, Feb. 20. President-elect Bruce Walker and bar leadership will review the nominations and submit them to the court.

Appointments/reappointments made for boards, commissions of the court

The Iowa Supreme Court published an order Feb. 10 announcing the appointments and reappointments of individuals to the boards and commissions of the court:

Client Security Commission:
Jennifer Clemens-Conlon, Dubuque, reappointed for four-year term
Joel Vos, Sioux City, appointed member for four-year term

Lawyer Trust Account Commission:
Artemio Santiago, Fort Madison, reappointed for three-year term
Kimberly K. Murphy, Council Bluffs, appointed member for three-year term
Jay East, Garner, appointed lay member for three-year term


Appointments made for task force steering committees

Last month the Iowa Supreme Court established two task forces: one to study Iowa family law case processing and the other to review Iowa’s guardianship and conservatorship reform. Below are the individuals appointed to each of the steering committees:

Iowa Family Law Case Processing Reform Task Force Steering Committee:

Honorable Thomas D. Waterman, Justice, Iowa Supreme Court, Davenport, chair
Matthew J. Brandes, attorney, Cedar Rapids, co-chair and reporter
Lora L. McCollom, attorney, West Des Moines, co-chair
Dan Bechtol, Southwest Iowa Mediation Services, Atlantic
Honorable Thomas N. Bower, Iowa Court of Appeals, Waterloo
David Boyd, State Court Administrator, Des Moines
Andrea Charlow, Drake University Law School, Des Moines
Honorable Randy S. DeGeest, District Judge, Oskaloosa
Ann Estin, University of Iowa College of Law, Iowa City
Andrew B. Howie, attorney, West Des Moines
Chad Kepros, attorney, Iowa City
Steven Lytle, attorney, Des Moines
Amy Moore, Mid Iowa Mediation, Ames
Carrie O'Connor, Iowa Legal Aid, Dubuque
Laura Parrish, attorney, Decorah
Terry Parsons, attorney, Cedar Falls
Elizabeth Rosenbaum, attorney, Sioux City
Jenny L. Schulz, Kids First Law Center, Cedar Rapids
Anjela A. Shutts, attorney, Des Moines

Guardianship and Conservatorship Reform Task Force Steering Committee:

Honorable Bruce B. Zager, Justice, Iowa Supreme Court, Waterloo, chair
Honorable Jeffrey Larson, Chief Judge, Fourth Judicial District, Council Bluffs
Honorable Cynthia Danielson, District Judge, Mount Pleasant
Honorable Craig Block, District Associate Probate Judge, Ankeny
Gail Agrawal, Dean, University of Iowa College of Law, Iowa City
*Josephine Gittler, Professor, University of Iowa College of Law, Iowa City
Ben Ullem, Dean, Drake University Law School, Des Moines
*Jerry Foxhoven, Professor, Drake University Law School, Des Moines
Greg Kenyon, attorney, Des Moines
Molly Kottmeyer, Counsel to the Chief Justice, West Des Moines, ex­ officio member

* serves as coordinator of the steering committee

YLD Mentorship application deadline this weekend

The deadline for application to The ISBA Young Lawyer Mentorship Program is almost here. Mentor and mentee applications for the program will be accepted through Sunday, Feb. 15, for the year-long program set to begin March 15.

The YLD officially launched the ISBA Young Lawyer Mentor Program in early January. Members interested in becoming mentors or mentees should download the mentor or mentee applications online and submit them this week to be considered for the 2015-2016 mentorship year.

Who can apply? ISBA members who have been licensed for fewer than five years in the state of Iowa are eligible to be a mentee. To serve as a mentor, attorneys must have been licensed for five years or more in Iowa, have a clean disciplinary record, and carry malpractice insurance (if required).

More information about the program is available in the December Iowa Lawyer magazine (Pages 8-11). For questions regarding the mentoring program, contact the YLD Mentoring Committee at

Repertory Theatre of Iowa to feature Clarence Darrow: A One Man Play

The Repertory Theatre of Iowa is producing a one-man show portraying one of America’s turn-of-the-century criminal attorneys: Clarence Darrow. The show is scheduled for various times March 11-14 at the Kum&Go Theater at 9th and Cherry in downtown Des Moines, Iowa.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Richards will be performing the lead role. Richards, an ISBA member, has been a contract artist performing with regional opera and theater companies for the past 20 years.

To read more about Richards or the production, visit the Repertory Theatre of Iowa’s website, or to contribute in other ways, read the contribution request letter from the theater.

In Other News...

IowaDocs is now published On HotDocs Market
HotDocs Market, the innovative new virtual marketplace from the document assembly experts at HotDocs, is now a platform for the distribution of IowaDocs automated legal content. Offered to Iowa State Bar Association’s members, IowaDocs is a library consisting of hundreds of legal documents, automated with HotDocs to create intelligent templates where the user answers questions to create customized documents based on the responses. This member-only service saves time, effort and cost in the production of documents and forms. The documents and forms cover a range of practice areas such as business law, civil litigation, family law and employment law and were available only on CD prior to distribution on HotDocs market.
Virtual Strategy Magazine

Iowa Gov. Branstad's legal counsel leaves for private sector
Gov. Terry Branstad’s legal counsel is leaving state government for work in the private sector. Branstad announced Thursday that Brenna Bird would leave his administration after four years of service. A press release did not provide any further details on Bird’s future plans. Bird launched an unsuccessful Republican bid for attorney general in 2010. Her last day was Friday, Feb. 6. Branstad has appointed policy adviser Michael Bousselot as his new legal counsel. He took over the role Monday, Feb. 9.
Associated Press via Omaha World Herald

Courthouse funding needs assistance, Iowa counties say
When it comes to funding courthouse operations, including security, counties would like a little help from the state. James Bronner, finance director for Black Hawk County, on Tuesday told a panel of state lawmakers that many courthouses contain extensive state operations — particularly the court system — yet funding comes exclusively from county budgets. Bronner said he would like to see the state help pick up a portion of the bill.
Quad City Times

Black Hawk County dismantles obsolete law library
The Black Hawk County law library today is a dark and lonely place. Few attorneys still venture back to library — once a vital tool for the local legal community — tucked away behind courtrooms and offices on the third floor of the courthouse. "It's used very, very rarely if at all," said Linda Nilges, district court administrator. "With the online accessibility of information these days, it has made this library a little obsolete." The county board of supervisors voted last week to authorize the district court to dispose of the large collection of mostly dated county-owned law books and legal publications currently lining shelves and stacked on the floor of the library.
Waterloo/Cedar Falls Courier


The Iowa Lawyer Weekly is an electronic newsletter published every Wednesday. Please submit comments, letters to the editor, articles, or photos, to Contact information should be included with submissions. The ISBA reserves the right to refuse any submission, but will take all submissions into consideration for future publication.


Legislative Report - Feb. 11

ABA Major Legislation for 113th Congress
 January 2015

February 6, 2015

No. 12–1323
Defendant seeks further review of a court of appeals decision affirming his conviction for first-degree kidnapping. DECISION OF COURT OF APPEALS AFFIRMED IN PART AND VACATED IN PART; DISTRICT COURT JUDGMENT REVERSED AND CASE REMANDED.

No. 13–0224
The State seeks further review of a court of appeals decision reversing the defendant’s first-degree arson conviction and remanding for a new trial based on pretrial counsel’s conflict of interest. DECISION OF COURT OF APPEALS VACATED; DISTRICT COURT JUDGMENT AFFIRMED.




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