Background on Paul Knupp, another Democratic candidate in IA-03

I missed the news last month that the Rev. Dr. Paul Knupp Jr. plans to seek the Democratic nomination in Iowa’s third Congressional district.

A psychiatric rehabilitation practitioner at Broadlawns Medical Center in Des Moines, Knupp has worked as a multi-denominational minister in the past. Since announcing his Congressional campaign on Facebook in mid-May, he has attended several Democratic events and marched in the Des Moines Pride Parade this past weekend.

Knupp’s running on what might be described as a “Berniecrat” platform:

Legislation to introduce- Rebuild America:
1. Medicare expansion to include all Americans
2. One trillion dollars to repair infrastructure/ jobs and provide permanent union employment
3. Citizenship for all undocumented persons – five years here, no felonies, pay $725
4. Free in-state tuition for all undergraduates
5. Restore full funding for all women’s health organizations and programs and provide guaranteed pregnancy choices
6. Environmental and legislative endorsement of Paris Accord
7. Raise minimum wage to $15 an hour

Knupp does not have a campaign website and is using his personal Facebook page to post information about his candidacy. He can be reached at or 515-991-5760. I enclose below biographical information and campaign literature provided by the candidate.

At least three other Democrats plan to compete for the 2018 nomination in Iowa’s third district: Anna Ryon, Cindy Axne, and Heather Ryan. In addition, Pete D’Alessandro and Theresa Greenfield are exploring campaigns here.

The sixteen counties in IA-03 contain 164,132 active registered Democrats, 175,639 Republicans, and 165,523 no-party voters, according to the latest figures from the Iowa Secretary of State’s office. Roughly two-thirds of the Democrats and more than half of all registered voters in the district live in Polk County, containing Des Moines and most of its suburbs.

Excerpt from resume provided by Rev. Dr. Paul Knupp Jr.:


B.A., magna cum laude, Roberts Wesleyan College, Phi Kappa Sigma

Honor Society

M. Div., Princeton Theological Seminary

M.A., Educational Psychology, University of Iowa (ABD)

Ed. D., Leadership Studies, Drake University

Dissertation: The Contribution of the Recovery Self Assessment to the Measurement of Illness Management and Recovery

Des Moines Social Services Employment


Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner

 Door-to- door Flood Counseling for Polk County Health Services

 Implemented Illness Management & Recovery (IMR) Curriculum

 Polk County Jail Counselor

 Polk County Health Services Faculty for Recovery Specialists, subject – mental health

 Started AA weekly recovery support group

 Psych Tech at Crisis Observation Center & Crisis Stabilization Center 3/1/17 – present

GOODWILL INDUSTRIES March 2006 – December 2008

Counselor/Case Manager

Vocational Specialist, Golden Circle PACT Team

Other Des Moines Employment

FIRST FRIENDS CHURCH (Quaker) 2002-2006


 Administration and financial management, public speaking, community relations

 Adult and children’s programming and teaching, volunteer coordination, counseling


State Coordinator

 Fundraising, public speaking, community relations, event planning and promotion

 Website design and newsletter publication


Red Barrel Program Coordinator

 Coordination and oversight of hundreds of volunteers, goods and funds at 30 stores

 Public speaking, community relations

 Financial and social service management

Additional Work Experience


College and University Instructor (12 years)

 At University of Iowa – taught educational psychology for two years as TA

 At Kirkwood Community College taught development and general psychology on the ICN

network, as well as religion and western civilization courses

 At Clarke College – advised psychology students (also head of department for one year), taught

general, developmental psychology, child & adolescent development, adult development,

behavior modification, cognitive psychology, healthy personality, educational psychology,

abnormal psychology, and social psychology


Multi-Denominational Minister (20 years)

 Administration and financial management, public speaking, community relations

 Staff and volunteer coordination, adult & children’s programming and teaching; refugee

resettlement, counseling, youth group leadership

 Keosauqua-Center Chapel-Bentonsport United Methodist Churches 1979 – 1983

 Keosauqua United Church of Christ 1980-1983

 Three quarters of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), one advanced, at University of Iowa

Hospitals and Clinics, Resident Chaplain 1983-1984

 Interim minister, Ainsworth & Cotter-Salem United Presbyterian Churches 1983-1984

 Interim minister, New London Presbyterian Church 1984

 Interim minister, Tipton United Church of Christ 1984-1985

 Minister, Summit Congregational United Church of Christ 1985-1989

 Associate minister, Coralville United Methodist Church, 1996-2000

 Minister, First Friends Church (Quaker), 2002-2006

Des Moines Community Involvement & Leadership


NAMI Iowa – Member

American Humanist Association – Co-founder & President Humanists of Iowa

AHA Chaplain, Iowa State Penitentiary, Ft. Madison, IA & Ft. Dodge Correctional Facility

Medication Manager Certification

Chauffeur’s license

Notary Public

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