Iowa Board of Regents

Regents History

Iowa’s 33rd General Assembly created the State Board of Education in 1909 to oversee, coordinate and govern the state’s three public institutions of higher learning, including the State University of Iowa in Iowa City, the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in Ames, and the Iowa State Teachers College in Cedar Falls.

The State Board of Education was renamed the Iowa Board of Regents in 1955. The three institutions followed with name changes of their own, beginning with the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts changing to Iowa State University of Science and Technology in 1959. The Iowa State Teachers College became the State College of Iowa in 1961 and the University of Northern Iowa in 1967. Finally, the State University of Iowa shorted its name to the University of Iowa for common use in 1964.

The Board also previously had oversight of two special K-12 schools, the Iowa School for the Deaf (from 1917 until 2023), and the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School/Iowa Educational Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired (from 1911 until 2023). 

The Board of Regents monthly newsletter will revisit past meetings that spurred important developments in the history of the enterprise. In addition, the lives of past board presidents will be highlighted.  

Selected Past Meetings

The University of Western Iowa

The three-year project that united a town, divided a Board, and nearly changed the landscape of Iowa's public education 


The Student Regent

Steven Zumbach, the first student ever appointed to the Board, recalls his experience working with Governor Robert Ray, Board President Stan Redeker and others during a tumultuous time in American history.


Board Members 1909-Present (PDF)


Presidents of the Board of Regents

President Served
Sherry Bates 2024-Present
Michael Richards 2017-2024
Bruce Rastetter 2013-2017
Craig Lang 2011-2013
David Miles 2008-2011
Michael Gartner 2005-2007
Robert Downer 2005
John Forsyth 2004-2005
Owen Newlin 1996-2004
Marvin Pomerantz 1995-1996
Marvin Berenstein 1993-1995
Marvin Pomerantz 1987-1993
John McDonald 1985-1987
S.J. Brownlee 1981-1985
Mary Louise Petersen 1973-1981
Stanley Redeker 1965-1973
Alfred Noehren 1963-1965
Harry H. Hagemann 1958-1963
Dwight Rider 1951-1958
Henry Shull 1941-1951
George Baker 1926-1940
D.D. Murphy 1915-1925
J.H. Trewin 1909-1915


President Pro Tems of the Board of Regents

President Pro Tem Served
Greta Rouse 2024-Present
Sherry Bates 2021-2024
Patty Cownie 2017-2021
Katie Mulholland 2013-2017
Bruce Rastetter 2011-2013
Jack Evans 2008-2011
David Miles 2007-2008
Teresa Wahlert 2006-2007
Robert Downer 2004-2006
Deborah Turner 2003-2004
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