Joseph P. Malanson






100 Court Avenue, Suite 600
Des Moines, IA, 50309

Court Admissions

All Iowa Courts


J.D. (Magna Cum Laude), Washington University School of Law, 2020

B.A. (Summa Cum Laude), College of William & Mary, 2017

Bar Admissions

Iowa, 2020


Joseph joined the firm in 2021 as a member of the Education Law Practice Area, focused in the areas of Public Finance and Procurement/Contracting. His early interest in politics and an internship with an Iowa congressional office helped him identify how as an attorney he could help strengthen communities with capital improvement projects that their citizens and schools need.

Working with K-12 school districts, he assists clients on a variety of issues, including those related to open meetings, public records requests, and public bidding and contracting. As a bond lawyer, Joseph works with school districts in the planning and financing of capital projects. This includes planning sessions, public meetings, analysis of state law and constitutional authority, working with financial advisors, and preparing proceedings for the sale and issuance of governmental bonding for a wide variety of projects. Joseph also assists clients with finance issues unique to schools, including lease-purchase financing, bond elections, and the adoption of special levies and taxes.

Upon graduation from law school, Joseph served for a year as a law clerk to the Honorable Leonard T. Strand, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa. Throughout law school, he held several internships with:  Ahlers & Cooney as a summer associate in 2019; the Iowa Attorney General’s Office; the Honorable Raymond W. Gruender, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in St. Louis; and the City of St. Louis Counselor’s Office. In law school, Joseph served as an Articles Editor for the Washington University Law Review.


American Bar Association

Iowa State Bar Association


  Order of the Coif


Iowa State University, Iowa School Business Management Academy, “UAP Chapter 2 and 11 on Elections / Revenue Purpose Statements / GO Bonds Timing and Planning" with Elizabeth Grob, April 2022 

Published Articles & Books

Note, “Returning Right-To-Farm Laws to Their Roots,” 97 Wash. U. L. Rev. 1577 (2020)

Professional, Community and Civic Leadership

Washington University School of Law, Pro Bono Pledge participant, completed 50 hours of pro bono work (2017-2019)