Three finalists named for Iowa Supreme Court vacancy

DES MOINES — A state panel has sent Governor Kim Reynolds three nominees for the vacancy on the Iowa Supreme Court.

The State Judicial Nomination Commission met Thursday, interviewed a dozen applicants and chose a judge and two attorneys as finalists. Joel Barrows is a district court judge in Bettendorf. Matt McDermott works in a Des Moines law firm and was the lead counsel defending the state’s new collective bargaining law when public employee unions sued. Dana Oxley works at a law firm in Cedar Rapids. She’s also an adjunct professor at the University of Iowa law school.

Reynolds now has 30 days to choose one of them for the vacancy created when Chief Justice Mark Cady died of a heart attack in November. The governor’s choice will join the court, then the justices will meet and vote on who among them will be chief justice.