Rebecca E. Reif

Tel/Direct:

515-246-0347

Tel/Main:

515-243-7611

Address:

100 Court Avenue, Suite 600
Des Moines, IA 50309

Court Admissions

All Iowa Courts

U.S. District Courts – Northern and Southern Districts of Iowa

U.S. Court of Appeals – Eighth Circuit

Education

J.D. (with Highest Honors), Drake University, 2013

B.A., Political Science (Magna Cum Laude), Colorado State University, 2008

Bar Admissions

Iowa, 2013

Background

Becky joined the firm in 2015 and is a member of the firm’s Public and Private Law Practice Areas, with a focus on Employment & Labor Law, Education Law, and Litigation.

In the area of employment law, Becky serves clients in strategic planning and litigation related to employment relationships, including reviewing and revising policies and employment agreements, and advising on compliance with federal laws such as the FLSA and FMLA. In addition, she assists employers in defending claims of retaliation, discrimination and harassment, and other employment-related claims. 

For clients in the education practice, Becky serves in both advisory and advocacy capacities, including developing and implementing policies, providing day-to-day counseling, and litigating cases in state and federal court and before administrative agencies. She assists education clients with issues such as student rights and discipline, employee misconduct, civil rights and discrimination, and compliance with laws such as Title IX and the Clery Act. Becky does a particularly significant amount of work with Iowa private colleges and universities.

Originally from Cheyenne, Wyoming, Becky graduated from Drake University Law School with Highest Honors and was named to the Order of the Coif and Order of the Barristers. While in law school, she was a member of the ABA National Moot Court team and Research Editor for the Drake Law Review.

Representative Projects

  • Defended private colleges and universities and school districts from employment discrimination claims in state and federal agencies and federal and state district courts, including allegations of sex or sexual orientation discrimination, race discrimination, and disability discrimination.
  • Successfully obtained summary judgment for a school district in a lawsuit involving claims of race and disability discrimination in education. In this matter, the state district court granted summary judgment on an arguably novel application of the doctrine of issue preclusion.
  • Litigated and obtained a summary judgment ruling in favor of a private college on civil rights and tort claims in federal court.
  • Defended a national corporate client which had a multi-million default judgment entered against it in a personal injury action in a state district court. Won a motion to set aside the default judgment, and the Iowa Court of Appeals declined to overturn the order setting aside the default.
  • Drafted and advised many public and private educational instructions on obligations under Title IX and the Jeanne Clery Act, including preparation of comprehensive policies and reports.

Memberships

Iowa Bar Association

Polk County Bar Association

Polk County Women Attorneys

C. Edwin Moore Inn of Court

National Association of College and University Attorneys

Recognitions

Order of the Coif, 2013

Order of the Barristers, 2013

M. Gene Blackburn Best Brief Award (Drake Law School Supreme Court Day Moot Court Competition), 2013

Drake Law School, ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition Team - Regional Competition Semi-finalist, and 2nd place for Best Brief Award, 2012

Drake Law School, Finalist, First Year Oral Argument Advocacy Competition, Spring 2011

Drake Law School, Finalist, C. Edwin Moore Oral Advocacy Competition, Fall 2010

Speaking/Presentations

Becky's most recent speaking engagements include:

Ahlers & Cooney P.C., Employment Law Client Seminar, "Pay Equity Update" with Lindsay Vaught, October 2018

Ahlers & Cooney P.C., Employment Law Client Seminar, "Current FMLA / ADA Issues" with Emily Kolbe, October 2018

Iowa Employment Conference, Fall Conference, "Advanced Employment Law: Pay Equity, ADA, FMLA & Other Case Law Updates" with Lindsay Vaught, October 2018

Iowa Employment Conference, Spring Conference, "Dealing with Employees on Job-Protected Leave - ADA and FMLA Compliance Issues" with Lindsay Vaught, April 2018

Ahlers & Cooney, Employment Law Client Seminar, "Legal Pitfalls of Employee Hiring" with Lindsay Vaught, November 2017

HRANI Law Conference,"Recruiting and Selection," November 2017

IASB Employee Relations Conference, “Website Accessibility: What You Should Know,” October 2017

Iowa Employment Conference, “Employee Hiring: Avoiding Legal Pitfalls” with Lindsay Vaught, September 2017

IASB Employee Relations Conference, “US DOL Regulations on Overtime: What Board Members Need to Know,” November 2016

Published Articles & Books

Drake Law Review, Volume 61, “Note, Knowledge is Power: Reform of For-Profit Educational Institutions on an Individual and Jurisdictional Level”

Professional, Community and Civic Leadership

Animal Lifeline of Iowa, Board Member (December 2017 - present)

Young Women's Resource Center, Young Empowerment Partnership Member (December 2017 - present)

Iowa State Bar Association, Executive Council of Young Lawyers Division

  • District 5C Representative (2014 - present)
  • Committee Chair: Disciplinary Opinions (2016 - present)

Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute – Class of 2017

Iowa Legal Aid, Volunteer Intake Attorney

Book Club Project - Iowa Correctional Institute for Women

The Wall that Heals (traveling Vietnam memorial)