Dr. Deborah Ann Turner is recognized as the 20th president of the League of Women Voters of the United States, having been elected to her formal position in 2020 at the 54th National Convention. Having remained active with the prestigious organization for over 10 years, she previously served as its co-president and state vice president in Iowa, as well as a member of its finance committee and governance committee. Additionally, Dr. Turner is a past chairperson of its diversity, equity and inclusion committee and has chaired the board of trustees for the League of Women Voters Education Fund. Drawing upon an inherent passion for preserving the democracy of the United States as it relates to voters’ rights, she enjoys having a significant influence on voters’ lives.
Prior to entering the nonprofit sector, Dr. Turner served in the field of medicine for 35 years as a gynecologic oncologist. To this end, she was the associate medical director at Planned Parenthood of North Central States from 2016 to 2022, and she was also affiliated with such facilities as the Genesis Medical Center in Davenport, Iowa, and the Mercy Cancer Center in Mason City, Iowa. As an extension of her career in health care, Dr. Turner also taught medical courses to students and residents at the University of Nebraska, the University of Iowa and the Medical College of Wisconsin.
For her extensive achievements in both the medical and nonprofit fields, Dr. Turner has received numerous accolades. She earned a Certificate of Compassionate Care from the Schwartz Center, a Gertrude Rush Award from the National Bar Association, and a Louise Noun Visionary Woman of the Year Award from the Young Women’s Resource Center of Des Moines. Impressively, Dr. Turner was also inducted into the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame and has been highlighted in Fortune Magazine and The Wall Street Journal.
Dr. Turner holds a Bachelor of Science in distributed studies (zoology, chemistry and psychology) from Iowa State University, a Doctor of Medicine from the University of Iowa and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from Drake University. She also completed a residency in obstetrics-gynecology at the University of Iowa and a fellowship in gynecologic oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Civically involved as well, Dr. Turner is involved with the Outreach nonprofit organization, through which she has notably traveled on 12 medical missions to Tanzania between 2010 and 2019. She is a member of Rotary International and Singida’s Medical Center, among other civic organizations.