Steven M. Nadel






100 Court Avenue, Suite 600
Des Moines, IA 50309-2231


Iryna Matviienko

Court Admissions

All Iowa Courts

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

U.S. Supreme Court


J.D., Cornell Law School, 1992

B.B.A., Accounting (with Highest Distinction), University of Iowa, 1989

Bar Admissions

Iowa, 1992


Steve Nadel is a member of the firm’s Public Finance Practice Group, serving cities, counties and municipal utilities throughout the state of Iowa. Steve regularly serves as bond counsel assisting municipal clients in the issuance of governmental bonds, including general obligation bonds and utility revenue bonds. As bond counsel, Steve guides the issuer in its preparations for debt issuances, and prepares all proceedings and approvals necessary to authorize the issuance and delivery of the obligations to the initial purchaser. In this role, Steve guides his public clients with regard to state and federal laws, including applicable federal tax regulations, and provides a validity and tax opinion upon issuance. As a member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers, Steve stays current on the latest federal municipal tax regulations.

Steve has represented many of Iowa’s municipal electric utilities and has worked on municipal financing aspects of major electric power and transmission facilities, as well as smaller municipal power and transmission facilities. In addition to governmental bond issues, Steve works with municipal electric utilities and electric joint action agencies on a variety of matters including joint utility ownership, governance, and power and transmission agreements.

He has also represented many of Iowa’s municipal communication utilities and has worked on municipal financing of municipal fiber network facilities. In addition to governmental bond issues, Steve works with municipal communication utilities on a variety of matters including governance and state law aspects of municipal communication utility operations.

Steve has experience with other revenue bond financings, including those related to nursing homes, assisted living centers, governmental and 501c(3) hospitals, and manufacturing facilities; as well as New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) transactions.

Prior to joining the Ahlers firm, Steve served as judicial law clerk for Justice David Harris, Iowa Supreme Court in 1992-1993. At Cornell Law School, he was a member of the Law School Moot Court Board.

Representative Projects

  • Municipal electric utility financing
  • Municipal communications utility financing
  • Capital improvement project and equipment acquisition financing statewide, including utility work, streets, roads, bridges, communication towers, and building construction and renovation 
  • USDA Rural Development Financing – community and utility improvements
  • SRF Financing – utility improvements
  • Manufacturing facility conduit financing
  • Long-term power purchase and sale agreements and other municipal power and transmission agreements
  • Sale of ownership interest in major electric power and transmission facilities


National Association of Bond Lawyers

Iowa Municipal Attorneys Association

American Bar Association – Sections: State and Local Government Law

Iowa State Bar Association

Polk County Bar Association

C. Edwin Moore Inn of Courts, Master/Emeritus


Best Lawyers in America©

  • Municipal Law (2023-2024)
  • Public Finance Law (2021-2024)

Chambers USA – Labor and Employment/Iowa (2007-2011)

Great Plains Super Lawyers – Employment & Labor Law (2009-2013)


Steve's most recent speaking engagements include:

Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities, Municipal Utility Law 101 Workshop, "Financing," October 2023

Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities, Municipal Utility Law 101 Workshop, "Municipal Utility Law," and "Municipal Utility Financing," November 2022

Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities, Municipal Utility Law 101 Workshop, "Municipal Utility Bid-letting," October 2021

Iowa State University, 2019 Iowa Municipal Professionals Institute, Clerks Roles in Elections,” with Molly Widen, Secretary of State's office, July 2019

Ahlers & Cooney, Client Seminar -- Post-Issuance Compliance Training for Bonds, "Ongoing Tax Obligations," October 2016

Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities, "Do's and Don't's of Financing Municipal Broadband," March 2015, 2016

Iowa Economic Development Authority, Iowa Finance Authority, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, US Dept. of Agriculture, "Iowa Bidding Requirements," August 2014

Iowa Municipal Finance Officers Association, "Resource Table," 2012-2017

Professional, Community and Civic Leadership

Central Iowa Aquatics, Board of Directors (2017-2020), President (2019) 

Des Moines Symphony Foundation, Board of Trustees (2018-2020)

Des Moines Symphony Association, Board of Trustees, President (2013-2015), Co-President (2012-2013), President-Elect (2011-2012), Vice President (2009-2012), Secretary (2009), Annual Campaign Committee Chair (2009-2012), Board Member (2007-2016)

Iowa Association of Business and Industry, Employment & Workforce Committee (2001-2011)

Temple B’Nai Jeshurun, Board of Trustees, Vice President (2011-2016), Brotherhood President (2002-2004)

Iowa Jewish Senior Life Center, Board of Directors (1997-2003)

Leadership Iowa (Class of 2002-2003)

Polk County Bar Association, Bench-Bar Committee (2000-2004)

Polk County Bar Association, Web Site Committee (2000-2001)

Iowa State Bar Association, Young Lawyers Division, Career Issues Committee Co-Chair (1996-1997)

Polk County Second Chance Program, working with at-risk youth (1993-1994)

Ithaca (NY) Youth Bureau, similar to local Big Brothers (1991-1992)