October 2016

Retirement: Judge Ronald E. Longstaff

The Honorable Ronald E. Longstaff, U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of Iowa, retired from the federal bench on September 30, 2016.
Judge Longstaff was born in Pittsburg, Kansas on February 14, 1941, the son of a coal miner. He graduated with his Bachelor’s degree in accounting from Kansas State College of Pittsburg (now Pittsburg State University) in 1962 and his Juris Doctor degree, with distinction, from the University of Iowa College of Law in 1965, where he was comment editor of the Iowa Law Review.
Following law school, he clerked for Judge Roy L. Stephenson of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa from 1965 to 1967. He worked 10 months in private practice in Des Moines before serving, at Judge Stephenson’s request, as both Clerk of Court and part-time U.S. Magistrate for the Southern District of Iowa from 1968 to 1976. During this period, he also taught as adjunct professor at Drake Law School from 1973 to 1976. He then served as the District’s first full-time U.S. Magistrate Judge from 1976 to 1991.
In 1991, Judge Longstaff was appointed to a new seat as U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of Iowa. He served as Chief Judge from 2001 to 2006 and assumed senior status on November 5, 2006.
Judge Longstaff has been published many times in the Iowa Law Review and was active in professional organizations, including the Federal Court Clerks’ Association (president, 1974-1975), the National Council of United States Magistrate Judges, the Iowa State Bar Association Special Committee to Revise Iowa Exemption Law (chair, 1968-1970), the U.S. District Court committee on local rules, and the Advisory Committee for the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. Congratulations, Judge Longstaff!