Diane Dornburg

Managing Attorney
image description

Diane is passionate about helping families. Personally, she has parented ten children, as a foster parent, stepparent, adoptive parent, grandparent and guardian. “I see right in front of me my own kids who struggle with their parents’ family conflict, mental illness, substance abuse, incarceration, and generational domestic violence. I learn from my kids every day; they remind me of the realities of life as I practice family law.”

After graduating from Gustavus Adolphus College and The University of Michigan Law School, Diane represented low-income persons in Ann Arbor, Muscatine, and Des Moines for over 25 years, most of that time as the supervising attorney of the family law unit at the Legal Aid Society of Polk County. She was most recently an associate at Carney & Appleby, where she represented parents and children in divorce, custody, domestic violence and all other types of family law cases.

In her role at Iowa Center for Children’s Justice, she sees families from the children’s viewpoint. Diane is an experienced litigator, mediator and parenting coordinator and is trained as well in Neutral Evaluation. Diane is enthusiastic about alternative approaches to handling family law problems, to help families maintain control of their lives. Everyone in the family benefits when parents have the tools to parent with clear expectations and minimal conflict.

In addition to her work as a lawyer, Diane facilitates a continuing care group at Powell Chemical Dependency Center, is actively involved at Urbandale United Church of Christ and has served on the Walnut Street School PTO. She is a member of the Polk County Bar Association Family Law Committee, the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, Iowa Collaborative Divorce Practice Group and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals. She is the Legislative Chair of the Family & Juvenile Law Section of the Iowa State Bar and served on the Iowa Supreme Court Family Law Reform Task Force.