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Deborah Stearns


Deb Stearns serves as a consultant for our Research Division.

With nearly 30 years of management and marketing research experience, Deb brings strong professional ethics, confidentiality, and research standards to SPPG.


Her responsibilities at SPPG + Essman Research include methodology recommendations, research design and development, focus group facilitation, sampling, data collection, data analysis, new business development, and report presentations. Deb serves clients locally, within the state of Iowa, nationally, and internationally. 


The level of accreditation and industry leadership matches the dedication Deb has for every project. She has been awarded the Professional Researcher Certification through the Insights Association and has been certified by the Marketing Research Association for successfully completing the Professional Interviewer Module of the MRA’s Data Collection Training Program. She is an active member of Insights Association, the American Marketing Association, AMA Iowa, and is involved with the Downtown Des Moines Chamber of Commerce and the Des Moines Leadership Network.


Deb is passionate about community involvement – and a community close to her heart is her alma mater, Iowa State University. She would go as far as to say she “bleeds cardinal and gold!” She is a former member of the Iowa State University Alumni Association Board of Directors (2015-2019), as well as a previous member of the Greater Des Moines Partnership Communications Advisory Council. Stearns currently serves on the Leadership Board for the Iowa Arthritis Foundation.


Deb finds the aspect she appreciates most about SPPG is also one that greatly benefits our clients – the team approach. Our dynamic SPPG team provides skills and perspectives for informing our research projects. Statistics are far from static and stiff! As a researcher, she appreciates the lens of real-world application of every data set.

More About Deb 

A few things about me: 
  • My hometown is Sioux City.

  • I began my career in broadcast journalism as the assistant news director at KICD AM-FM radio in Spencer, news reporter at KASI-KCCQ radio in Ames, and the assistant news director at KCOB radio in Newton.

  • My family has adopted precious pups from the Animal Rescue League (Fonzie, Packer and Reggie), and we can’t thank them enough for our four-legged friends!

Movie concession choice:
  • A big bucket of freshly popped popcorn, no extra butter on top needed. 

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