Bill Menner is the founder of The Bill Menner Group, a consulting firm focused on community development, rural partnerships and economic vitality. Previous to the creation of that small business, Menner served the Obama Administration as Iowa’s state director of USDA Rural Development. In that position, he oversaw an organization that provides housing, community facility, energy and business support across Rural Iowa. Between 2009 and 2017, Rural Development invested more than $5 billion in loans and grants in rural communities and businesses in Iowa.
Prior to his White House appointment to USDA, Menner served as executive director of Poweshiek Iowa Development, a county-wide economic development organization based in Grinnell. In addition to acting as the county economic development director, he led downtown development, historic preservation and tourism efforts in the City of Grinnell.
Menner also spent 14 years as a public radio reporter, seven covering government and politics – including the 1992 and 1996 Iowa caucuses.
A native of the Cleveland, Ohio-area, Menner is a graduate of Ohio State University with a BA in journalism and an MA in political science.