Rockne Cole


  • Luther College, Economics (1997)
  • The University of Iowa College of Law, J.D. (2000)

Practice Areas

  • Criminal Defense
  • Civil Rights
  • Habeas Corpus
  • Removal Defense

A Message from Rockne

I graduated with distinction in 2000 from the University of Iowa College of Law. While in law school, a panel of judges, law faculty, and Iowa City lawyers selected me from a field of 36 law students to participate on the six member Stephenson Mock Trial team. After law school, my family set down roots in Iowa City. I have represented residents from all walks of life from Iowa City and the world, ranging in diverse areas such as: historic preservation, educational law, commercial and agricultural disputes. I also believe in community service, and volunteered with various non-profit organizations in Iowa City.

I have spent my legal career building bridges and resolving disputes. I embrace a legal philosophy of our greatest President Abraham Lincoln:

Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser — in fees, expenses, and waste of time. As a peacemaker the lawyer has a superior opportunity of being a good man. There will still be business enough.

Honest Abe’s words still true today. Litigation is time intensive, expensive, and stressful. It rarely achieves the result that the parties intend. That is why I will try to do everything possible to resolve your dispute in a prompt, quiet, and least costly way possible. That said, it takes two to embrace that philosophy. So, while I try to persuade your neighbor to amicably resolve your dispute, I am always prepared to litigate your case, as long as necessary to achieve what you need to achieve. To paraphrase the Rolling Stones, while I may not always be able to get what you want, I will do everything possible to get what you need. No matter how difficult your case becomes, I will not leave your side, and stand with you as you navigate troubled waters.

Having practiced in Iowa City for 20 years, I also have built up a strong professional network of highly experienced lawyers in civil and criminal justice, university discipline, alternative dispute resolution, landlord/tenant, and immigration law. Sometimes, we may need to bring them on board to advance your cause. With your permission, I will invite them to join our legal team.

But I cannot achieve a good result without you. I believe in a working with you collaboratively to solve your dispute. While I have the legal experience, you are the expert in your own story. The more effectively I can convey your story, the more likely I will be able to persuade the decision makers to find in favor of you, whether that be the opposing counsel, a judge, or a jury of your fellow community members.

That is my story. Send me an email, or give me call so that I begin learning your story and solving your legal challenge.