Des Moines Public Library Board of Trustees
The Des Moines Public Library Board of Trustees is appointed by the Mayor of Des Moines, with the approval of the City Council. The five-member board determines and adopts policies that govern the operation and program of the Library, including personnel policies and policies governing the selection of library materials, supplies and equipment.
Meet the DMPL Board of Trustees
Jessica Cezar is a Des Moines native and relishes in the memories of growing up and discovering her favorite books in the South Side library, where she now creates memories with her own kids.
Cezar is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Elementary Education. With her background and love for education she took on the diligent task of providing education to her two kids during the pandemic. She is a deep supporter of the Des Moines Public School system where her children are enrolled. Her passion for education and DMPS translates to consistent engagement and advocacy for educational rights.
Cezar is also the partner to Pernell Cezar, CEO of BLK & Bold, the first Black-owned nationally distributed coffee company, and recently marked as one of the fastest growing companies in the country.
When Cezar isn’t helping with the company or celebrating and spending time with her two children, you can find her listening to her favorite podcasts, creating custom shortbread cookies, or watching basketball.
Bob Mahaffey joined the Library Board of Trustees in 2017 after spending 12 years serving as a City Council Member. A long-time executive at Anderson Erickson Dairy and resident of the city’s east side, Mahaffey played a role in building the current East Side Library. Mahaffey says he’s a supporter of libraries and recognizes the importance of the role libraries play in our community.
Tim Hickman is an architect and principal and Substance Architecture, an architectural design firm based in Des Moines. Hickman graduated from Iowa State University with a BA in Architecture and holds a Master Degree in Architecture from Yale University. Hickman was appointed to the Board of Trustees by Mayor Frank Cownie in 2022. Hickman has been a dedicated ally of Des Moines’ library system since working on the design of the Forest Avenue Library in the early 1990s.
Hickman served on the Board of Directors of the Des Moines Public Library Foundation from 2015 to 2020 serving as Secretary, Vice President, and President of the Board during his tenure. An avid reader, he is energized by the ways the Des Moines’ Library system serves every resident of the metro area, providing education, entertainment, literacy, and equity while its branches provide cultural centers within the city’s neighborhoods.
Isobel Osius graduated from the University of Wyoming with degrees in accounting and English literature and holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Temple University. She worked as a custom research director and marketing database director for Conde Nast Publications in New York City for more than eighteen years. In 2002, she joined Meredith Corporation where she served as an editorial researcher until her retirement in 2007. In her spare time, she likes to read and travel.
Mayor Frank Cownie appointed Wes Graham to the Des Moines Public Library’s Board of Trustees in September 2014. In accepting the appointment, Graham shared what a strong impact the library had on his own growth and education. He has “great memories of growing up here and going, seemingly every week, to the public library.” He looks forward to serving on the board and believes that “the public library system is extremely important to the cultural growth of a city like Des Moines.”
A Des Moines native, Graham has a law degree from the University of Minnesota. After working for seven years with a law firm in Minneapolis, MN and watching his hometown grow and evolve, he decided to return to Des Moines. Graham worked at Graham, Ervanian, & Cacciatore for six years. He currently works at Duncan Green Law Firm.