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Gloria Betcher


Ames, IA


Gloria J. Betcher has served on the City Council of Ames, IA, since 2014 and is now in her second term as the city’s First Ward Council Representative. In 2017, she became the First Vice Chair of the NLC University Communities Council (UCC), chairing and facilitating meetings and webinars on town-gown relations for the UCC. Her day job—teaching in the English Department at Iowa State University—and her home in a near-campus neighborhood contribute to her ongoing interest in neighborhood quality of life and City-University partnerships. Most recently, Gloria guided the creation of the Campus and Community Commission, a City commission that provides a public forum to facilitate discussion of issues of common interest to the City of Ames, Ames neighborhoods and business community, Iowa State University, and Iowa State University Student Government.

Before her election to City Council, Gloria chaired the Ames Historic Preservation Commission for seven years and served as President and Executive Director of Preservation Iowa, the state’s 501c3 for historic preservation. She is an ardent advocate for historic preservation as both an economic generator and a best practice for sustainability. As a professional preservation consultant, Gloria has written grants; trained others in preservation research, grant-writing, and commissioner roles; and worked on National Register of Historic Places nominations. She has presented papers on preservation in college towns to national audiences at the National Trust for Historic Preservation Conference and the National Alliance of Preservations Commissions.

In her City Council role, Gloria has acted as a representative to the Ames Economic Development Commission Board, the Ames Convention and Visitor’s Bureau Board and Executive Committee, and the Central Iowa Sports Authority Executive Board. She holds a B.A. cum laude in Latin and Medieval Studies from St. Olaf College, M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Minnesota, and a Certificate in Town-Gown Relations from the International Town and Gown Association.

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