Iowa State Representative Curt Hanson (D-Fairfield) died at home on Friday. He was 73.
Hanson served in the Iowa House since 2009. He was the ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee. Hanson also served on the Agriculture, Education, and Environmental Protection Committees, as well as the Education Appropriations Subcommittee. He represented House District 82 which includes Davis, Jefferson, and Van Buren Counties.
Hanson was born and raised on a farm near Swea City in Kossuth County. He resided in Fairfield for 52 years. Hanson graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a Bachelor of Arts degree and from the University of Iowa with a Masters of Arts degree.
Hanson was a driver education teacher at Fairfield High School for 43 years. As a driver education teacher, he received the Fairfield Jaycee Outstanding Young Education Award, was named the Fairfield Teacher of the Year, and was named runner-up for the National Driver Education Teacher of the Year. He is also an amateur radio operator and has been a private pilot.
Hanson was a former president of the Iowa Association of Safety Education and was their business manager for many years. He was also a former president of the Fairfield Education Association and a member of the National Education Association and the Iowa State Education Association. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church, the Fairfield Kiwanis, and the Fairfield Chamber of Commerce. Hanson is survived by Diane, his wife of 48 years, two adult children, and five grandchildren.
Iowa House leadership and the Reynolds Administration responded to Hanson’s passing.
“Iowa lost an exceptional public servant today with the passing of Rep. Curt Hanson. Curt taught thousands of students to drive safely on the roads in Jefferson County and was an active member of the Fairfield community his entire life. Rep. Hanson was the model for thoughtful, diplomatic, and constituent-centered representation. He worked tirelessly for his constituents every single day. His passion for education and expertise on transportation issues will be sorely missed in the Iowa House. My thoughts and prayer are with Diane and the family,” House Minority Leader Mark Smith (D-Marshalltown) said in a released statement.
“Rep. Hanson was passionate about being a voice for his constituents and was a friend to many in the Iowa House. He will be missed. We send our thoughts and prayers to the family and friends of Rep. Hanson,” House Speaker Linda Upmeyer (R-Clear Lake) said in a released statement.
“I was saddened to hear the news of Rep. Curt Hanson’s passing this morning,” Governor Kim Reynolds said. “Rep. Hanson was a champion of education. As a former teacher, he wanted to ensure everyone in Iowa had the same access to quality, affordable education. Rep. Hanson’s presence in the Iowa House will greatly missed. I am keeping his wife, Diane, his children and his grandchildren in my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”
“Around the State Capitol, Rep. Curt Hanson had a reputation for being kind,” Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg said. “In a political climate where kindness often tends to be the exception, not the rule, Rep. Hanson’s thoughtful nature did not go unnoticed. He will be greatly missed, not only by his fellow lawmakers but also by his family. Please join me in keeping the Hanson family in your thoughts and prayers as they mourn the passing of their husband, father, and grandfather.”