-Iowa City Downtown District Establishes Next Phase of Nighttime Mayor Position

(Iowa City, IA)- May 22, 2019- The Iowa City Downtown District has officially hired their newest “Nighttime Mayor.” Joe Reilly, a local Iowa City resident, University of Iowa alum, and culinary enthusiast, will be joining the Downtown District team, tasked with continuing and growing the work of former Nighttime Mayor Angela Winnike. 

Reilly is a Council Bluffs transplant that moved to Iowa City 15 years ago to attain a BA in Theatre Arts from the University of Iowa. For the past decade he has focused his time being the face for airline brands at the Eastern Iowa Airport while spending his free time and weekends downtown at the Englert, Film Scene, and other downtown haunts.  Reilly was hired for his knowledge base in the arts, passion and familiarity with the downtown community, experience with media and Public Access TV, customer service skills, and perspective related to diversity and inclusivity.

“Joe has a natural intuition of what this role is all about and his familiarity with downtown and its opportunities will allow him to hit the ground running.  We couldn’t be more pleased to add his talents to the pool,” said Nancy Bird, Iowa City Downtown District Executive Director.

While the inaugural Nighttime Mayor was a part-time position, Reilly has been hired as a full-time employee under a new partnership with Think Iowa City. Joe will be tasked to expand the ICDD’s role in championing Downtown’s night economy through targeted marketing initiatives, leading the newly formed Arts & Cultural Council for the Downtown District and working directly with the downtown hotels and conferences.

“At the heart of every culturally vibrant district are the people that make it a point to stay in the area and engage regularly”, said Joe Reilly. “Whether that means being a patron, owner, creator or promoter. When the opportunity came up for me to have a hand in shaping, drawing and welcoming that vibrancy, in a city that has become very dear to me over the years, I pounced on the chance.”

When first introduced in 2017, the Downtown Iowa City Nighttime Mayor position was one of the first in the United States, inspired by similar positions in Europe and notably, Amsterdam.  Reilly now joins dozens of cities throughout the U.S. and world that have invested in staff to directly support and advocate for the unique needs of the night economy and cultural venues.