Age 29 | Development director, Science Center of Iowa
Determined. Confident. In her first interview seven years ago at the Science Center of Iowa, Susan Kloewer demonstrated those characteristics. In the process, she gained a mentor.
“After hearing how accomplished she had been throughout her college career, I looked at her and said, ‘Is there anything you can’t do?’ She said ‘no.’ And she has continued to deliver,” said Chris Kramer, vice president of development at the Science Center.
A year after being hired, Kloewer was promoted to development director. She changed some approaches to fund raising; she turned some heads. Just as important, Des Moines and its residents turned hers.
“I was told when I was hired at the Science Center that you’ll be done with Des Moines in one year … and the Science Center.” Kloewer recalled.
“Des Moines and the Science Center are full of so much potential, why would I leave?” Kloewer, who grew up in western Iowa, has stayed and become active in the community.
She was part of the 2009-2010 Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute class, she is a board member of the Junior League of Des Moines and she is a charter member of 100+ Chicks for Charity. She has completed the Junior League’s Mary Louise Smith Women’s Leadership Initiative class, and she is a member of Pi Alpha Alpha, an academic honor society for public administration students.
MD Isley, executive director of Bravo Greater Des Moines, said in a nominating letter that Kloewer “brings an incredible amount of leadership, professionalism and civic-mindedness to our community.”
“During our work together on the Give Back Des Moines community project, Susan provided strong leadership to our committee and steering committee by helping create focused plans, providing effective and timely communication and organizing critical details that contributed to the success of the project,” he said. “Give Back Des Moines raised more than $490,000 and collected more than 30,000 basic need items for various local charities.” Kloewer said her experiences at Iowa State University, where she was an advertising major, shaped her can-do attitude.
“When I was ready to go out and find that first job, I felt that I really could do anything – what I lacked in skill, I could make up for in determination,” she said.