Barbara Riedesel Iverson

Honored by:the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication
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Barb Riedesel Iverson. Iowa State University and Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication advocate, industry thought leader and generous friend.

A native of Glidden, Iowa, Barb graduated from Iowa State University in 1976 with a degree in journalism and mass communication.

In 2017, Barb retired after more than 40 years in public relations with her final 20 years as president of Weber Shandwick’s robust financial services industry practice. She now consults for organizations and companies, plus takes on writing and editing projects.

Weber Shandwick, a global public relations firm with headquarters in New York City, is viewed as a powerhouse in the financial services industry. Under Barb’s leadership, the financial services industry practice specialized in retirement services, banking, insurance, asset and wealth management, electronic payments, and tax compliance and administration.

As the leader of the 300-person practice, Barb worked with Weber Shandwick offices around the world to provide seamless service to well-known financial services clients including EY, the U.S. Treasury, Bank of America, Transamerica, MasterCard Worldwide, the Federal Reserve Banks, State Farm, TIAA, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Prudential, New York Life, Nasdaq, Cerberus Capital Management, Life Happens, the Internal Revenue Service, Envestnet and Brown Brothers Harriman. Barb has long been considered an industry thought leader in the areas of retirement services and financial education. She joined Weber Shandwick in 1996 and served on the firm’s global executive management team until leaving the firm in December 2016. She continues to live in Minneapolis but has always spent a good share of her time in New York City and Washington, D.C.

She continues to serve on the board of DCIIA, the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association, which is a member-driven non-profit organization made up of the largest 401(k) providers in the country. She is also a long-time member the Public Relations Society of America.

In 2012, Barb was recognized with the James W. Schwartz Award, the highest honor conferred by the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication. The same year, she was chosen to present the Chamberlin Lecture, sponsored by ISU alumni Margaret and L. Eugene Chamberlin.

Barb also served on the school’s advisory council from 2010-2018, serving as the vice chair from 2014-16 and the chair from 2016-18. During her time on the council, Barb championed several efforts including developing key messages for the school, creation of the public relations major and establishing the Greenlee Summit. The impact she has made during her time on the council will continue to benefit the university, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Greenlee School for years to come.