All six members of the leadership team for the 36 Democrats in the Iowa House this year are women.

“It’s history making and I think that’s worth noting,” said House Democratic Leader Jennifer Konfrst.

After each election, Republicans and Democrats in both the House and Senate meet privately to choose senators and representatives to serve in leadership positions. This is the first time one of those four partisan groups will have women in every leadership post.

“We’re going to continue to make sure that the voices that need to be heard from across the state are heard, including women’s voices, which are sometimes drowned out up here, let’s be honest,” Konfrst said.

Lindsay James of Dubuque is minority whip, the number two Democrat in the Iowa House. The assistant leaders for House Democrats are Representatives Sue Cahill of Marshalltown, Heather Matson of Ankeny, Amy Nielsen of North Liberty and Sharon Steckman of Mason City. Konfrst posted a photo of the group on social media.

“I got a letter from a little girl who’s a third grader, that said she was so excited to see all girls in charge,” said Konfrst, who has been House Minority Leader since mid-2021. “What they see is what they can be and so if we can show that women can lead, I think it’s really important for future generations.”

Republican Linda Upmeyer of Clear Lake is the only women to be elected by her peers to serve as Speaker of the House, a role she held from the fall of 2015 through late 2019. Republican Mary Lundy of Marion is the only women to be elected to be a floor leader in the Iowa Senate. Lundy held the position in 2006 and 2007.

After this year’s General Election, Senate Republicans chose Amy Sinclair of Allerton to be Senate President. She’s the second woman elected by her peers to the post.

Lieutenant Governor Ann Zimmerman also served as Senate President, but that was prior to passage of a constitutional amendment. Prior to 1991, lieutenant governors served as president of the state senate. Since then, the majority party chooses the person who serves in that role.

Minnette Doderer of Iowa City was the first woman to be elected and serve as senate president pro tempore in 1975 and 1976.

Radio Iowa