Janet Petersen

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Janet Petersen
Janet Petersen.jpg
Iowa State Senate District 18
In office
Term ends
January 8, 2017
Years in position 2
Base salary$25,000/year
Per diem$135/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Iowa House of Representatives District 64
Bachelor'sUniversity of Northern Iowa
Master'sDrake University
Date of birthAugust 1, 1970
Office website
Personal website
Janet Petersen (b. August 1, 1970) is a Democratic member of the Iowa State Senate, representing District 18. She was first elected to the chamber in 2012. She previously served in the Iowa House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013.


Petersen earned her B.A. in Communications/Public Relations from the University of Northern Iowa in 1992 and her M.A. in Integrated Communications from Drake University in 1999.

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Petersen served on the following committees:

Iowa Committee Assignments, 2012
Commerce, Vice-chair
Government Oversight, Chair
State Government
Ways and Means


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Petersen served on the following committees:


In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Petersen served on the following committees:



See also: Iowa State Senate elections, 2012

Petersen ran in the 2012 election for Iowa State Senate District 18. She ran unopposed in the Democratic primary on June 5, 2012 and defeated Vicki Stogdill in the general election on November 6, 2012.[1][2]

Iowa State Senate, District 18, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJanet Petersen 69.2% 18,954
     Republican Vicki Stogdill 30.8% 8,455
Total Votes 27,409


See also: Iowa House of Representatives elections, 2010

Petersen won re-election to the 64th District seat against Dan Kennedy (R). Petersen had no opposition in the Democratic primary. The general election took place on November 2, 2010.[3]

Iowa House of Representatives, District 64 General Election (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngJanet Petersen (D) 6,689
Dan Kennedy (R) 3,626
Vicki Stogdill (Ind) 1,490


On November 4, 2008, Petersen was re-elected to the 64th District Seat in the Iowa House of Representatives, defeating Steve Svejda (R).[4] Petersen raised $75,960 for her campaign, while Svejda raised $444.[5]

Iowa House of Representatives, District 64
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngJanet Petersen (D) 10,259
Steve Svejda (R) 5,034

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Petersen is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Petersen raised a total of $319,868 during that time period. This information was last updated on September 19, 2013.[6]

Janet Petersen's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Iowa State Senate, District 18 Won $53,952
2010 Iowa State House, District 64 Won $55,185
2008 Iowa State House, District 64 Won $75,960
2006 Iowa State House, District 64 Won $47,394
2004 Iowa State House, District 64 Won $34,835
2002 Iowa State House, District 64 Won $19,957
2000 Iowa State House, District 72 Won $32,585
Grand Total Raised $319,868


Petersen won election to the Iowa State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Petersen raised a total of $53,952.


In 2010 Petersen collected $55,185 in campaign donations. The largest donors are listed as follows:[7]


In 2008 Petersen collected $75,960 in donations.[8]

Her four largest contributors were:

Donor Amount
Iowa Credit Union League $9,500
Associated General Contractors of Iowa $4,000
Iowa Bankers Association $3,000
Qwest Communications $2,250


See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in Iowa

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of Iowa scorecards, email suggestions to scorecards@ballotpedia.org.

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.


Petersen is a member of the 21st Century Forum, American Danish Brotherhood, Des Moines Arts Festival Board of Directors, Big Sister with Big Brothers/Big Sisters, on the Board of Directors of the Small Business Development Centers and a member of the Walnut Hills Methodist Church. Petersen served on the Staff of the 1992 Clinton/Gore Presidential Campaign, was a Lobbyist for the American Heart Association and a Senior Account Executive for Strategic America.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Liz Mathis (D)
Iowa State Senate District 18
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Iowa House of Representatives District 64
Succeeded by
Bruce Bearinger (D)