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About I.O.W.A.


I.O.W.A. promotes the welfare and interest of women lawyers, maintains the honor and integrity of the profession of law, secures justice and equality for all persons within the state, and advances the following goals:

  • to promote full participation of women attorneys in all the rights, privileges, benefits, and responsibilities of the legal profession
  • to promote issues of statewide, national, and international significance that relate to women lawyers and women as affected by the law and the legal system
  • to support the Iowa State Bar Association and other organizations in advancing the status of women in society
  • to promote the growth of local bar associations for women and assist in their activities, and
  • to provide a system of communication and support among its members.


Membership in I.O.W.A. is open to any lawyer or law student.  Join us!


I.O.W.A. is administered by a volunteer Board of Directors that includes:

  • the executive officers,
  • a representative from each judicial district in Iowa,
  • the immediate past president, and
  • committee chairpersons.

Board members are elected for one-year terms at each annual meeting held in June.



On February 25, 1984, forty-one Iowa attorneys convened and drafted the constitution of the Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys (I.O.W.A.). The framers debated a range of topics concerning Iowa women and Iowa attorneys. Since then, I.O.W.A. has expanded its membership throughout the state.

Download a copy of the constitution, by-laws, and articles of incorporation, including a list of founders.

Past Presidents: Megan Merritt, Christina Thompson, Angie Schneiderman, Shellie Mackel, Dawn Boucher, Ann Smisek, Jennifer Smith, Alison Werner Smith, Mary Spellman Walsh, Jackie Armstrong, Heather Palmer, Anjela Shutts, Christine Conover, Ruth Cooperrider, Emily Gould Chafa, Lynette Donner, Gail Sheridan-Lucht, Miki McGovern, Linda Whittaker, Diane Tvrdik, Marti Nerenstone Connie Cohen, Mary Ellen Perkins, Jaki Samuelson, Marie Cohen Prince, Mary Schlicher, Janet Lyness, Marsha Bergan, Chris Corken, Diane Stahle, Ione Shadduck, Fran O'Brien Andersen, and Marsha Beckelman.


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