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Employment Law Judges in Iowa Resign

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Marlon Mormann, a former administrative law judge at the Unemployment Appeals section of the Iowa Workforce Development, left his position in 2014 due to the rapidly changing environment at the IWD in the past few years.  One of the catalysts for these changes was the appointment of the former director of the IWD, Teresa Wahlert.  Ms. Wahlert was appointed by Terry Branstad in 2010, beginning a wave of controversy that continued through her resignation in January 2015.  Ms. Wahlert, a non-attorney, was in charge of the agency's administrative law judges and reportedly "bullied" many of them to rule in certain ways, and even to outright change their decisions.  Mr. Mormann was one of the judges who was directly told to change his decisions.  For these reasons, many of the judges left the agency, leaving the remaining judges with excessive case loads.  Many of the remaining judges were also less experienced, forcing the experienced judges to train them, thus taking on even more work.  Since Beth Townsend was appointed to replace Wahlert, the environment at IWD appears to be less hostile, but only time will tell whether it will recover from the negativity created during the last four years.

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