Laura Bergus Announces Candidacy for City Council

Laura Bergus announced her candidacy for city council in Iowa City today.

Bergus, 38 years old and a lifelong resident of Iowa City, is running at-large. She has a passion for community development, access to justice, and the arts. Bergus has committed herself to work for a better community for all of us.

“My first job in high school was to televise Iowa City’s city council meetings. I saw the importance of fair local government firsthand, and understood the value of public service in bringing equity and empathy to the community,” Bergus said.

She will kick off her campaign with a public meeting at Big Grove Brewery, 1225 S. Gilbert Street in Iowa City, on Thursday, May 9, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Voters can learn more about her at

Bergus was a municipal employee until 2008. She worked in North Liberty and Iowa City covering public meetings, promoting city initiatives, and working to connect citizens to their government. When she left professional public service to attend law school, Bergus was appointed by the Iowa City city council to serve on a public commission. Now, as an attorney, Bergus helps Iowans resolve disputes through mediation and working in our local courts.

“Local government should be fair, accountable, and transparent. I will keep focus on policy and planning, not micromanaging,” Bergus said. “The role of city council is to listen to citizens and staff, exercise judgment and discretion, and to set the strategic plan. I will help Iowa City stay on target for a just, sustainable, and equitable future.”

Engagement in Iowa City has long been important to Bergus. Her work and leadership has engaged her in the fabric of our community, and includes:

  • Joining as a founding member of FilmScene’s board of directors, helping to bring independent, non-profit cinema to Iowa City. She’s now working with FilmScene and the Englert to make Iowa City the greatest small city for the arts in America.

  • Serving nine years on Iowa City’s telecommunications commission, where she pushed the local cable provider for accountability on rates and services, and recommended broadband policy to the city council.

  • Giving hundreds of hours of pro bono legal services through Iowa Legal Aid’s Volunteer Lawyer Project, helping victims of domestic abuse, counseling non-profits, and defending clients against creditors.

  • Serving on the board of the Community Foundation of Johnson Community and the executive council of 5224GOOD to connect organizations and agencies directly serving our community with critical funding.

  • Recruiting volunteers, organizing events, and raising funds to benefit Grant Wood Elementary and the South District Neighborhood Association.

Bergus has chosen to live her entire life in Iowa City. She left City High School at age 16 to attend the University of Iowa. After working in local government for more than a decade, she attended the University of Iowa College of Law. Since 2011, Bergus has been an attorney in Iowa City, and is now an owner and managing partner at Hayek, Moreland, Smith & Bergus, LLP. Bergus is also a professional mediator and works in collaborative law. She lives with her husband, Nick, and their seventh-grade daughter, Evelyn, in southeast Iowa City.

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