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Charlie Wittmack


Des Moines

(515) 282-7800

(515) 282-8700



Charlie is a trial lawyer and business strategist with extensive international experience, who draws on more than a decade of experience in the courtroom and more than twenty years as an entrepreneur and marketing professional.

As a strategist, Charlie is dedicated to helping clients pursue strategies that increase total revenue, increase net profitability, and increase scalability. He serves clients that range in size from ambitious, local, start-ups, to large multi-national corporations ranked in the Fortune 500. In addition to working with clients from California to New York, Charlie also serves international clients on projects in Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Nepal.

In addition to his strategy work, Charlie has earned a reputation as a relentless and effective trial attorney. He is licensed to practice before the state and federal courts of Iowa and North Carolina and is eligible for pro hac admission in proceedings across the United States.

Representative Matters

  • Prosecuted multiple suitability claims through FINRA related to the Auction Rate Securities market collapse for clients with portfolios valued between five- and eight-figures.
  • Prosecuted a complex construction case alleging engineering malpractice and breach of contract, obtaining a seven-figure settlement from one defendant and a seven-figure jury verdict against a second group of defendants.
  • Obtained a six-figure settlement from a residential window manufacturer outside of a related national class action and without filing a complaint.
  • Successfully prosecuted nearly 100 F.E.D. proceedings in English and Spanish for a real estate developer who was converting a group of mobile home parks into retail space.
  • Founded numerous charities including the drafting of organizational documents, independent contractor agreements, state charitable solicitation filings, and strategic partnership plans.
  • Designed and implemented a fundraising strategy for a start-up charity that raised $1.3 million in funding during the first 20 months of operation, including donations from all 50 states and 18 foreign states and nations, through a strategic mix of grassroots fundraising, crowd-sourcing, grants, corporate sponsorships, and events.
  • Developed proprietary technology to simplify complex operational processes for an industry certified through the International Standards Organization (ISO).
  • Developed, scripted, directed and produced a comprehensive training program with videos, written materials and tests, and deployed the “responsive,” cross-platform system to a workforce with hundreds of employees.
  • Created human resource tools for job forecasting and recruiting, while performing an organizational redesign.
  • Automated legal forms and processes, on both the client and supplier side.
  • Created enhanced financial tools for improved strategic planning through metrics and benchmarking.


  • Doctor of Law (JD) with Distinction (2003-2006)
    University of Iowa, College of Law
    Iowa City, Iowa
  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), Management and Marketing (1997-2001)
    University of Iowa, Tippie College of Business
    Iowa City, Iowa
  • National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) (1995)
    Semester in East Africa
  • Theodore Roosevelt High School (1995)
    Des Moines, Iowa

Civic Engagement

  • General Counsel, Keystone Montessori School, Charlotte, North Carolina (2013-present)
  • Fellow and Counsel, The Explorers Club, Manhattan, New York (2010-present)
  • Adjunct Faculty, Department of Global Health, Des Moines University (2010-1017)
  • Ambassador, Save The Children, Washington, D.C. (2010-2011)

Honors & Awards

  • Iowa Law 150, University of Iowa, College of Law (2015)
  • Hall of Fame, Des Moines Roosevelt High School (2012)
  • Fellow National, The Explorers Club (2010)
  • Iowan of the Decade, The Des Moines Register (2009)
  • Forty Under 40, Business Publications (2007)
  • Commencement Speaker, University of Iowa (2004)
  • Executive Proclamation, Governor Tom Vilsack (2003)
  • Honorary Senate Resolution, Ambassador Mary Kramer (2003)

Selected Publications

  • “Antarctica: Before It Melts,” NEWSWEEK Magazine, videos and photographs (2016)
  • “The Teen Issue: 50 Years Later,” NEWSWEEK Magazine, videos and photographs (2016)
  • “An Interest-Based Approach to Management and Leadership,” Kendall Hunt, contributor (2011)
  • “The Dichotomy of Security and Adventure,” The Leader, The NOLS Alumni Magazine, author and photographer (2011)
  • “Committed to the Core,” 220Triathlon Magazine (U.K.), author and photographer (2011)

Personal Interests

Charlie has swum the English Channel and climbed Mount Everest (twice), and was the first American to have done both. He has completed ocean marathon swims around the world, scaled peaks on five continents, trekked across East Africa with the Maasai tribesmen, and sailed the Indian Ocean in a handmade boat. His expeditions have been featured in the national and international media including ESPN, CNN, Outside Magazine, Men’s Journal, AOL, Huffington Post, the Washington Post, Bloomberg, and many more.

Lately, Charlie’s adventures have been keeping him much closer to home as he works to keep up with his two sons, James and Jack.

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