Jenna H. Sabroske






100 Court Avenue, Suite 600
Des Moines, IA 50309


Melissa Pearson

Court Admissions

All Iowa Courts


J.D. (Highest Honors), Drake University, 2017

B.A., (Summa Cum Laude), Creighton University, 2014

Bar Admissions

Iowa, 2017


Jenna joined the firm in 2017 as a member of the firm’s Government Law Practice Area, after clerking with the firm while she attended Drake Law School, and became a shareholder in 2023. 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, such as zoning and annexations.
Additionally, Jenna works as part of the attorney team serving as city attorney/general counsel to several cities.

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.

Representative Projects

  • Negotiate terms for development agreements involving various forms of public incentives, including the sale of city-owned land and Tax Increment Financing (“TIF”) incentives
  • Assist cities in annexation proceedings, including representing city clients in matters before the City Development Board (administrative board of the Iowa Economic Development Authority)
  • Help cities understand and evaluate tools to incentivize development of new residential subdivisions and in-fill housing


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


Jenna's most recent speaking engagements include:

Iowa State Association of Counties - Spring Conference, "Using Public Funds for Private Purpose," with Nathan Overberg, March 2023

Iowa State Association of County Auditors, "Introduction to Real Estate Law, Documents of Transfer, and Auditor Responsibilities," November 2022

Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute 2022, "Financing Options and Economic Development," with Maria Brownell, Jason Comisky, and Kristin Cooper, October 2022

Iowa Municipal Finance Officers Association, Fall Conference, "Open Records," with Emily Kolbe, October 2022

Iowa League of Cities, Annual Conference, "Providing Funds to Private Entities for a Public Purpose," with Nathan Overberg, and "Fostering Childcare Availability in Your City," September 2022

Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute 2021, "Financing Options and Economic Development," with Maria Brownell, Jason Comisky, and Kristin Cooper, October 2021

Iowa City/County Management Association, Iowa Municipal Management Institute, "Property Acquisition 101: What to do When Negotiations Fall Apart," with Kristine Stone and Maria Brownell, March 2021

Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute 2020, "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 Municipal Professionals Institute 2019, 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

Drake University Law School, Recent Alumni Engagement Board (2020 - present), Secretary (2020-2022), Vice Chair (2022-2023)

Iowa State Bar Association, Young Lawyers Division – PR Committee & Communications Chair (2017-2019)

Polk County Women Attorneys

  • Board of Directors (2018-2021)
  • Community Engagement Chair (2020, 2021)
  • Basket Auction Co-Chair (2019)
  • Law School Liaison (2018)

Pi Beta Phi Des Moines Alumnae Club

Des Moines Community Playhouse, Curtain Crowd – Sponsorship Chair for Playhouse's 100th Anniversary