Marty Ryan will be honored by Iowans Against the Death Penalty Saturday, November 10 with the Governor Harold E. Hughes Award at the organization’s 50th anniversary dinner at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Des Moines. Please join us for this event.
Reception, dinner, award ceremony, keynote address and remarks by Rob Warden, award winning legal affairs journalist and executive director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions, Bluhm Legal Clinic, Northwestern University School of Law, and Iowa native Rev. Tricia Teater of the Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty.
Tickets $30 in advance. To RSVP email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 515-229-4578 or send your check to IADP, P.O. Box 65416 • West Des Moines, Iowa • 50265 by November 9.
“As a lobbyist and activist Marty has worked vigilantly for more than two decades to prevent reinstatement of the death penalty in Iowa,” said IADP chair Dennis Barnum of Gowrie, Iowa.
Beginning with his work as the legislative director for the ACLU of Iowa for 18 years, Ryan helped to build the coalition organizations that comprise Iowans Against the Death Penalty. He keep track of lawmakers’ positions on the death penalty and monitored any legislative attempt to bring the death penalty back.
“Marty always kept his vote count close to the vest, knowing which legislators stood against reinstatement. His work at the State Capitol has been important in maintaining Iowa’s status as an abolitionist state,” said IADP board member Patti Brown.
Ryan has continued to keep a watchful eye on the issue at the Iowa Statehouse through his work with Fawkes-Lee & Ryan, a legislative and public policy advocacy firm founded in 2010 with his wife Stephanie Fawkes-Lee. The firm does contract lobbying legislative monitoring, legal research and writing, and publishes an on-line newsletter that focuses on legislative and public policy issues.
Ryan is a native of west-central Iowan. He was born in Carroll and raised in Vail, a town founded in 1867 by his great-grandfather. Following graduation from Kuemper Catholic High School in Carroll Ryan was drafted and served at Fort Lee in Virginia during the Vietnam War.
In addition to his work with the ACLU, Ryan has worked as a heavy equipment operator, a land surveyor’s assistant, a retail and wholesale meat cutter, dislocated worker grant administrator, a legal assistant, and a labor negotiator and organizer for UFCW Locals 440 & 271. Ryan has two adult daughters and three grandchildren.
Previous recipients of the Hughes award include former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack, University of Iowa law professor David Baldus, Des Moines attorney James Benzoni, the late Sen. John Ely, Chuck Day and Marjorie Parris.
Iowans Against the Death Penalty (IADP) is an independent,
non-partisan, non-sectarian, grass-roots organization committed
to preventing reinstatement of the death penalty in Iowa through
public education and political activism.
IADP publishes an occasional newsletter, The Watch; sponsors
public events around Iowa; and engages in active lobbying when
death penalty legislation is pending in the Legislature.
IADP was founded in 1962 and was instrumental in promoting the
repeal of Iowa's death penalty in 1965. In 1990 the organization
was reconstituted in response to an initiative in the Iowa
Legislature to reinstate the death penalty in Iowa. Since that
time IADP has worked to bring together the voices of Iowans from
all walks of life and religious and secular traditions who stand
in opposition to the death penalty. Legislative proposals to reinstate the
death penalty in Iowa were defeated in 1991, 1995, 1997, and
Iowans Against the Death Penalty Fund (IADPF) was formed in
1990 as a non-profit organization eligible to receive tax-exempt
contributions that can be spent only on educational and
charitable projects. In 1997 IADPF was granted exemption from
federal income tax under section 501(c)(3). The Fund supports
educational material associated with the death penalty and has
reimbursed IADP for a portion of its newsletter costs.