Pearl of Muscatine: Alma Brunson
by Margaret Hurlbert
April 07, 2020

As someone who grew up in Muscatine, Alma Brunson knows how much the community cares for everyone. In everything she does, Brunson works to spread that care to others. 

A judicial specialist III, Brunson works every day to help keep cases moving on time, assisting judges and attorneys during cases, and even helping interpret for members of the public attending cases. Though Brunson must manage the needs of many different people every day, she enjoys the challenge of doing so many different things and of getting to help people in the process. “I have always worked with the public, so it’s a natural fit,” said Brunson, “but I think the variety in my job keeps it fresh.” 

Along with her work, Brunson values getting to give back to the community in numerous ways, from serving on the Salvation Army of Muscatine County’s board, to volunteering with Calvary Church, Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center, Muscatine Center for Social Action, the Muskie Boosters, and United Way of Muscatine.

Brunson also works hard to promote suicide awareness and to encourage blood and organ donation to celebrate the life of her daughter, Micaela Brunson, who became an organ donor after dying from suicide. “We speak openly and honestly about her death in hopes of raising awareness,” explained Brunson. “It’s important to us to honor her legacy of helping others with an annual blood drive on her birthday.”

For Brunson, giving back to the community feels natural, as Muscatine has supported her family through challenging times ever since her parents immigrated to Muscatine from Mexico before her birth. “When someone has a tragedy, illness, natural disaster, or fundraiser, the community rallies,” she shared. “Our family has been the recipient of this out-pouring of love and support when we lost our daughter.”

Brunson also values the ingenuity of the community in solving problems. “People in this town get creative, and they get things done,” she asserted. “The heart of our community is strong—I just love my little town.” As someone who gives so much to so many organizations, Muscatine appreciates Brunson’s own creativity and devotion to helping all around her.

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