Spark Stories

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Teens, Adults
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Join us on Facebook for the premier of Renee Hardman's spark story.  You'll hear the “spark story” that motivated her to make the Des Moines Metro a better place to live.

In 2017 Renee made history when she was elected as the first African American woman to the West Des Moines City Council in its 127 year history.

Renee is currently Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa. She has served this organization for over 30 years as Big Sister, eight year Board member, and Big Sister of the Year in 1996.

Renee has a lengthy list of community service and honors. A select few include Trustee for Des Moines University, Advisory Board member for The Robert D. and Billie Ray Center, Board Member of the Latina Leadership Initiative, Polk County Housing Trust Fund, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority (29 years), Des Moines Chapter of The Links, Inc. and past President of the Chrysalis Foundation and longtime volunteer and past 5th Judicial District Commissioner appointed by the Governor.

In 2014, she was inducted into the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame and also has received a number of awards for her outstanding civic engagement to include but not limited to: Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute’s Alumni Volunteer Award, DMU’s Diversity Champion Award, Connie Wimer Spirit Award, President Obama’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Drum Major of Service Award, Des Moines University Glanton Scholarship Honoree, Women of Influence Award, Best Minority Business Leader Award, YWCA’s Women of Achievement Award and most recently being the 2020 Forty Under 40 Alumna of the Year.



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