Who We Are

  • Our Mission

    One Iowa advances, empowers, and improves the lives of LGBTQ Iowans statewide.

    Our work includes:

    • Educating Iowans about the LGBTQ community
    • Training healthcare providers, business leaders, and others to ensure LGBTQ Iowans are respected in every facet and stage of their lives
    • Promoting policies within state and local government that protect the civil rights, health, and safety of LGBTQ Iowans
    • Empowering tomorrow’s LGBTQ leaders through training and mentorship
    • Connecting LGBTQ Iowans with vital resources
  • Our Vision

    One Iowa seeks to improve the lives of LGBTQ Iowans by protecting and advancing equality and inclusiveness through education, improving workplace culture, and increasing access to quality healthcare across our state.

    What we do at One Iowa can be described in three words:

    • Educating
    • Advocacy
    • Collaboration

    Learn more about One Iowa’s initiatives

    Our work
  • History

    One Iowa was founded in 2005 to advocate for LGBTQ Iowans’ right to marry. The original goal of the organization was realized on April 3, 2009 when the Iowa Supreme Court made the unanimous decision in Varnum v. Brien to make marriage equality a reality in Iowa.

    The organization then changed course and dedicated itself to defending the right to marry from powerful opponents. In 2012, it became clear that marriage equality in Iowa no longer needed the vigorous defense it once did.

    We shifted our focus to a comprehensive approach to ensure LGBTQ Iowans’ rights and dignity are respected in every facet and stage of their lives. One Iowa’s current mission is to advance, empower, and improve the lives of LGBTQ Iowans statewide.


success stories

Gary Moore

One Iowa has been the go-to organization for thoughtful responses to issues arising in the community. The LGBTQ Older Adults Conference has been another such response. It provides leadership and workshops to thoughtfully explore the needs of our gay seniors, those that led the way 30-40 years ago and can continue to do so with our help.

  • Gary Moore
  • LGBTQ Activist
Emily Brown

Partnering with One Iowa and bringing their leadership and expertise to the table to work alongside our Executive Leadership team allowed UnityPoint Health to begin providing frequent and regular LGBTQ education for teams across the system… The impact the partnership with One Iowa has had will live on for decades to come.

  • Emily Brown
  • UnityPoint Health
Heidi Yang

The people are what drew me to One Iowa and why I’ve been volunteering here since 2008. The staff at One Iowa have always been kind, considerate, and accepting. I admire the work they do and I’m happy to help out in whatever way I can; whether it’s doing data entry or volunteering at an event.

  • Heidi Yang
  • One Iowa volunteer
Portrait of Jarrel Johnson

This experience has definitely created a fire in me to think about how I can be more active; how I can leave this space in a better place than it was when I got here.

  • Jarrel Johnson
  • LGBTQ Leadership Institute 2018
Portrait of Mariah Himes

I had the opportunity to see people like me in [leadership] positions, which honestly was super empowering. I can now visualize myself in different kinds of roles.

  • Mariah Himes
  • LGBTQ Leadership Institute 2018
Headshot of Kristel Payne

Max came and did a lunch and learn for us on non-binary and was their normal wonderful self. I had several comments afterwards and people really enjoyed the presentation, but even better, they learned a lot and it opened more minds and hopefully created more allies.

  • Kristel Payne
  • Bankers Trust

Please note that One Iowa is not a legal or social service agency and cannot provide legal, medical or social services or referrals. We will try to direct you to information about resources appropriate to your needs. For resources, click here.