Statehouse, Des Moines 50319


In 1976 the legislature established the Iowa Court of Appeals as a five-member intermediate court of appeals. A sixth judge was added in 1983. In 1999, three additional judges were added, making the Court of Appeals a nine-member court. The court has jurisdiction to hear appeals from civil actions and special civil proceedings whether at law or in equity, criminal actions, small claims cases, and post-conviction relief proceedings. A decision of the Iowa Court of Appeals is final and shall not be reviewed by any other court except upon a grant by the supreme court of an application for further review.

In 1962, the people of Iowa approved a constitutional amendment which provides for judges to be selected by merit rather than on a political ticket. When a vacancy occurs on the Iowa Court of Appeals, an independent state body, the State Judicial Nominating Commission, composed of citizens appointed by the Governor and attorneys elected by lawyers licensed to practice in Iowa, reviews the applicants and forwards the names of nominees to the governor. The governor must appoint a judge from the slate of nominees within thirty days.

Judges are appointed for a term of six years. When a term is about to end, the judge's name is placed on the ballot in the general election so that voters may decide whether or not to retain the judge for another term. The chief judge is elected by a majority of the court in each odd-numbered year to serve a two-year term.

Summaries of court of appeals decisions and the full text of the opinions are available on the Judicial Branch website at www.judicial.state.ia.us/decisions/appeals/opinions.

SACKETT, Rosemary Shaw - Okoboji
Chief Judge, Iowa Court of Appeals

Birth: January 17, 1940, Fort Dodge. Parents: Frank W. and Irene Rafferty Shaw. Education: Graduated Pocahontas Community High School, 1957; B.A., cum laude Buena Vista College, 1960; J.D., Drake University Law School, 1963; L.L.M.; University of Virginia Law School, 1990. Spouse: Robert W. Sackett of Okoboji, 1964. Children: 1 daughter, Mary Margaret; 4 sons, Murphy, Morgan, Barry, and Frank. Profession and Activities: Practiced law, Pocahontas and Spencer, 1963-1983. Former member: Iowa Commission on Alcoholism, Supreme Court Juvenile Advisory Rules Committee, Spencer Low Rent Housing Commission. Member: American, Iowa, Judicial District 3A (president, 1977 and 1983), Clay County (president, 1981-1983), and Dickinson County Bar Associations, Iowa Judges Assoc. (chair, Family Law Committee, 1985-1992), Catholic
Church, Rotary, American Assoc. of Univ. Women. Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, September 1983. Term: ends December 31, 2002.

HECHT, Daryl L. - Sioux City

Education: B.A., Morningside College, 1974; J.D., University of South Dakota, 1977. Married and has two daughters. Profession and Activities: Private practice, Sioux City, 22 years. Served as member of the Board of Directors of Boys and Girls Home and Family Services, the Morningside College Alumni Association, the Woodbury County Judicial Magistrate Nominating Commission and Woodbury County Compensation Commission. Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, 1999. Term: ends December 31, 2000.

HUITINK, Terry L. - Ireton

Birth: December 2, 1951, Orange City. Education: Graduated West Sioux Schools, Ireton/Hawarden, 1970; B.A., University of Iowa, 1974; J.D., Drake University Law School, 1976. Spouse: Kathleen Gaul, 1971. Children: 4 sons; Michael, Johnathan, Daniel, and Zachary. Profession and Activities: General practice, Ireton, Sioux Center, 1977-1988; Juvenile court referee, third district, 1981-1988; District court judge, District 3B, 1988-1994; Member: Sioux County Bar Association, Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Bar Association Criminal Law Committee, Supreme Court Appellate Restructuring Committee, Iowa Supreme Court Improvement Project; Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, February 1994. Term: ends December 31, 2002.



MAHAN, Robert E.-Ames

Birth: October 23,1946, Carroll. Parents: Roy and Betty (Kisgen) Mahan. Education: Graduated Coon Rapids H. S., 1965; B.S., Iowa State University, 1969; J.D., University of Iowa, 1973. Spouse: Janet K. (Lloyd) Mahan. Children: 4 daughters; Lindsay, Melissa, Allison, Ashley. Profession and Activities: Summer Internship, Manhattan District Attorney's Office, New York, 1972; Practiced law, Waterloo, 1973-78; Asst. Co. Atty., Black Hawk, 1976-78; District Associate Judge, 1978-87; District Court Judge, 1987-97; Lecturer in Juvenile and Family Law, University of Northern Iowa, 1977-present; Member: Iowa Supreme Court Comm. on Judicial Orientation; Black Hawk and Story County Bar Assoc.; Iowa Bar Assoc.; recipient of Iowa Trial Lawyers Judicial Achievement Award, 1995; Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, July 31, 1997. Term: ends December 31, 2004.

MILLER, John C. - Burlington

Birth: Wellman, IA.. Education: B.A., University of Iowa, 1969; J.D. with Distinction, University of Iowa, 1975. Married and 3 children. Profession and Activities: Private practice, 1975-1980. District court judge, District 8, 18 years. Member: Des Moines County, Iowa State, and American Bar Associations. Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, 1999. Term: ends December 31, 2000.

STREIT, Michael J. - Chariton

Birth: April 14, 1950, Sheldon. Education: Graduated from University of Iowa, B.A. in Economics, 1972; University of San Diego, J.D., 1975. Spouse: Sonya B. Streit. Children: Ashton M Streit. Profession and Activities: Member of San Diego Law Review,1974-1975. Admitted to practice in Iowa and California. Member of Iowa, California, Lucas County Bar Associations; practiced law in Chariton, 1975-1983; Lucas County Attorney, 1983; Assistant Lucas County Attorney, 1975-1979; District Court Judge, 1983-1996; Chair, Supreme Court Education Advisory Committee, 1990-present; Chair, Iowa Judicial Institute, 1991-present; Chair, New Judge Orientation/Mentor Program, 1991-present; Co-chair, Judges Association Education Committee, 1990-present; Supreme Court Technology Committee, 1988-present; Anglo American Exchange Program, Middle Temple, London, England, 1991; Bencher, Blackstone Inn of Court, 1990-present. Term: ends December 31, 2004.

VAITHESWARAN, Anuradha - Des Moines

Birth: Hyderabad, India. Education: attended high school in Cedar Rapids. Undergraduate degree, Grinnell College, 1980; J.D. and Masters in Political Science, University of Iowa, 1984. Married and 2 children. Profession and Activities: Law Clerk for the Honorable Charles R. Wolle, Iowa Supreme Court, before Wolle's appointment to the federal district court. Worked as an attorney with Legal Services Corporation of Iowa and with the Iowa Attorney General's Office prior to appointment to the appellate court. Member: Polk County and Iowa State Bar Associations; Polk County Women's Association; C. Edwin Moore Inns of Court. Appointed to Iowa Court of Appeals, 1999. Term: ends December 31, 2000.

VOGEL, Gayle Nelson - Knoxville

Birth: June 14, 1949, Rockford, IL. Education: B.A. Rockford College, 1971, cum laude; J.D. Drake Law School, 1983 with honors, Order of the Coif. Spouse: Thomas E. Vogel. Children: 3 sons; Tim, Carl and Andrew. Profession and Activities: General practice, Johnson, Lane & Vogel, Knoxville, 1983-1996. Member: Past President of Marion County and District 5A bar associations; Iowa State Bar Association; Grievance Commission, 1988-1996; Good Shepherd Lutheran Church; Knoxville Area Community Hospital Board of Directors, 1991-1996; Tax Review Board, 1995-1996; Rotary Club Member, Board of Directors, 1991-1994. Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year, 1994. Member of C. Edwin Moore Inns of Court and Iowa Judges Association. Board of Directors of Brenton Bank, 1992-96, and South Central Iowa Health Care Partners, Inc., 1994-96; Family Law Committee; Iowa Supreme Court Improvement Project; past co-chair of the Quality of Representation Task Force and current chair of the Summary Appeal Task Force. Appointed to Court of Appeals, April 25, 1996. Term: ends December 21, 2004.


ZIMMER, Van D. - Vinton

Birth: November 15, 1947, Vinton. Education: B.A., University of Iowa, 1969; J.D., University of Iowa, 1972. Spouse: Julie Corken Zimmer. Children: 1 daughter, Emily; 1 son, Brian. Profession and Activities: Assistant Linn County Attorney, 1973-1978. Adjunct faculty member at Mt. Mercy College, 1974-1975; and Kirkwood Community College, 1975-1976. Assistant Attorney General, Area Prosecutors Division, State of Iowa, 1975-1978; Assistant U.S. Attorney, Northern District of Iowa, 1978-1979. Legal practice, Vinton, 1979-1985; District Court Judge, 1985-1998. Member: Benton Co. and IA State Bar Assoc.; chair, IA Judge's Assoc. Courts and Community Committee, 1996-present; chair, Supreme Court's Criminal Issues Committee, 1994-1997; Supreme Court's Public Education Committee, 1998-present; Faculty, New Judges Orientation Program, 1991-present. Former Member: Board of Governors, IA State Bar Assoc. Fellow: Iowa Bar Foundation, elected to membership in 1997. Appointed to Court of Appeals, December 1998. Term: ends December 31, 2000.