The 1977 - 78 biennium was a time of changes, experiments, and advancements for the Iowa Civil Rights Commission. Major revisions were made in the Iowa Civil Rights Act as were many changes made in the agency itself. A new executive director came to the Iowa Civil Rights Commission at the beginning of fiscal year 1977 and fiscal year 1978 saw a large reorganization in the agency. A protection and advocacy program for the developmentally disabled was implemented by the Commission while a new statewide organization combining personal and group resources into a unique network emerged from an Iowa Civil Rights Leadership Conference. The Iowa Civil Rights Commission turned to a study of rental practices across the state while VISTA volunteers from across the nation came to the Commission as a result of an experimental program. In order to provide incoming staff with greater expertise and sensitivity in the area of civil rights, an increased emphasis was placed on the classroom portion of training. Although the number of case closures dipped, the case inventory was reduced over the two year period. The largest settlement in the history of the Commission was negotiated during this biennium; and more public hearings were held in fiscal 1978 than in the previous ten years.