J.D. (Highest Honors), Drake University, 2017
B.A., (Summa Cum Laude), Creighton University, 2014
- Economic Development/Urban Renewal
- Real Estate & Environmental
Jenna joined the firm in 2017 as a member of the firm’s Public Law Practice Area, after clerking with the firm while she attended Drake Law School. Jenna primarily works with cities and counties throughout the state of Iowa. Jenna’s practice centers around assisting cities and counties with economic development, real estate transactions, land use issues such as zoning, annexation, and eminent domain, as well as general municipal matters.
Jenna currently serves as the Firm’s Economic Development/Urban Renewal Practice Group leader. Within the Economic Development/Urban Renewal portion of her practice, Jenna advises Iowa municipalities on the utilization of various economic development tools and programs, including urban renewal/tax increment financing (TIF), urban revitalization/tax abatement, and state programs such as Workforce Housing Tax Credits and the High Quality Jobs Program. As part of this work, she creates and amends urban renewal and urban revitalization plans, structures development agreements for commercial and residential development, and assists municipalities in the adoption process for these plans and agreements.
Within the Real Estate & Environmental Practice Group portion of her practice, Jenna helps clients navigate real estate transactions from start to finish. She is experienced in preparing and negotiating purchase/sale agreements, reviewing abstracts, and writing title opinions. Overlapping with her general municipal practice, Jenna advises her municipal clients on the specific requirements and processes for governmental entities in these transactions.
Jenna also spends a considerable amount of time advising cities and counties on various land use issues and general municipal questions. These land use issues include zoning and PUDs, annexations, and eminent domain and condemnation. Additionally, Jenna answers questions on topics unique to governmental bodies such as open meetings and conflicts of interest under Iowa law. Jenna currently serves as Assistant City Attorney for the City of Albion.
While attending Drake Law School, Jenna competed on the ABA Negotiations and ABA Client Counseling teams and worked on the Drake Law Review, serving as Executive Editor during her final year of law school. During law school, Jenna completed 60+ hours of uncompensated legal work in the public sector, earning a Public Service Certificate upon her graduation.
All Iowa Courts
Iowa State Bar Association – Young Lawyers Division
Polk County Bar Association
Polk County Women Attorneys
Selected to give keynote address at Drake Law Review Awards Banquet, March 2019
Order of the Barristers
Order of the Coif
Iowa State Bar Association, 2017 Graduating Senior Award
Drake University Law School, 2017 Public Service Certificate
Iowa State University, 2020 Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute, "Financing Options and Economic Development." with Maria Brownell, Jason Comisky, and Kristin Cooper, July 2020
Iowa League of Cities, Annual Conference, “Should Your City Use Urban Renewal Minimum Assessment Agreements?,” with Nathan Overberg, September 2019
Iowa State University, 2019 Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute, “Financing Options and Economic Development,” with Maria Brownell, Jason Comisky and Kristin Cooper, July 2019
Iowa State Association of County Auditors, Summer Conference, "The Auditor's role in Real Estate Transactions." July 2019
Iowa League of Cities, Annual Conference, "Beyond Buildings: Creating Jobs Through Urban Renewal" with Nathan Overberg, September 2018
Iowa Municipal Finance Officers Association, Spring Conference, "TIF Basics" with Nathan Overberg, April 2018
Published Articles & Books
Cityscape, Iowa League of Cities, Vol 75 No.10, April 2020, "Electronic Meeting Guidance," 2020
Cityscape, Iowa League of Cities, Vol 75 No. 9, March 2020 “Questions Answered: Helping Communities Thrive,” 2020
Ahlers & Cooney, Iowa Urban Renewal Law, A Primer from Ahlers & Cooney, original authors: Mark Cory and Patricia Martin, authors of 2018 update: Jenna Bishop, Jason Comisky and Nathan Overberg, 2018
Two Decades of Obscenity and Free Speech Issues in Hong Kong, with a U.S. Comparative Perspective, co-authored with Drake Law Professor Mark S. Kende, 46 Ga. J. Int’l & Comp. L. 317, 2018
Note, Weeding the Garden of Pesticide Regulation: When the Marijuana Industry Goes Unchecked, 65 Drake L. Rev. 223, 2017
Professional, Community and Civic Leadership
Iowa Legal Aid, Volunteer Intake Attorney
Iowa State Bar Association, Young Lawyers Division – PR Committee & Communications Chair (2017-2019)
Polk County Women Attorneys, Board of Directors (2018-present)
- Community Engagement Chair (2018- present)
- Basket Auction Co-Chair (2019)
Pi Beta Phi Des Moines Alumnae Club
Des Moines Community Playhouse, Curtain Crowd – Sponsorship Chair for Playhouse's 100th Anniversary