Age 39 | Executive director, Central Iowa Shelter & Services

Tony Timm has made helping Des Moines’ homeless his mission.

Timm, the executive director of Central Iowa Shelter & Services (CISS) since 2008, helped lead the organization’s $15 million capital campaign and oversaw the construction of its new $13 million shelter, which opened in September 2012.

Each year, CISS helps between 1,200 and 1,500 different individuals suffering from domestic abuse, mental illness or substance abuse, Timm said, providing them with emergency shelter, health care and food.

“I was really drawn to the organization because it does the right thing,” he said. “By offering basic shelter and services, we can help people get back on their feet.”

Gov. Terry Branstad appointed Timm to the Iowa Council of Homelessness, which is a statewide council made up of representatives from different cities and state departments. “We take a collaborative look and find the ‘best practices’ on how to serve these folks,” he said.

His desire to increase awareness for the shelter led him to join the Des Moines Downtown Chamber of Commerce in 2008. “I wanted to be partners with the business community, not just ask them for donations once a year,” he said. “Businesses need to be part of the solution.”

He then served as the chamber’s president in 2012.

“My observations of Tony include him as a passionate advocate for local issues, a caring leader of those he represents and a creative problem-solver,” wrote John Smith, former president of the West Side Chamber of Commerce. “Tony has a not-for-profit spirit and an entrepreneurial mindset.”

The husband and father of two is also a competitive darts player, a pastime he picked up while attending Iowa Wesleyan College. He plays in a league and will be attending this year’s state tournament in Waterloo. He and his partner have gone to the state championship for the past several years, he said, and once took home third place in the second highest skill-level group.


Five reasons he’s a 40:

• Helped lead and complete Central Iowa Shelter & Services’ $15 million capital campaign.

• Past president of Des Moines Downtown Chamber of Commerce.

• Appointed to the Iowa Council of Homelessness by Gov. Terry Branstad.

• Recipient of the 2012 Social Czar designation from the Des Moines Social Club.

• Board member of the Greater Des Moines Partnership and the Downtown Community Alliance.


Mentor: Businessman Jim Cownie

Fun fact: Timm is certified to shoot fireworks and ordained to perform marriages in the state of Iowa.