The Iowa Caucus App Company’s CEO Appears To Be Based In Denver, And He’s Sorry

February 4, 2020
Carl VossCarl VossNati Harnik/AP
Precinct captain Carl Voss of Des Moines displays the Iowa Democratic Party caucus reporting app on his phone outside of the Iowa Democratic Party headquarters in Des Moines, Iowa, Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020.

Shadow Inc., the company whose app is at the center of the delayed Iowa caucus results, was incorporated in September 2019 in Colorado, the Daily Beast reported.

The app has been blamed for what a former Iowa Democratic Party chairman called a "systemwide disaster" after officials at caucus sites were unable to communicate results to the party.

Shadow Inc.'s website on Tuesday posted a statement credited to CEO Gerard Niemira:

"We sincerely regret the delay in the reporting of the results of last night's Iowa caucuses and the uncertainty it has caused to the candidates, their campaigns, and Democratic caucus-goers. As the Iowa Democratic Party has confirmed, the underlying data and collection process via Shadow's mobile caucus app was sound and accurate, but our process to transmit that caucus results data generated via the app to the IDP was not. Importantly, this issue did not affect the underlying caucus results data. We worked as quickly as possible overnight to resolve this issue, and the IDP has worked diligently to verify results. Shadow is an independent, for-profit technology company that contracted with the Iowa Democratic Party to build a caucus reporting mobile app, which was optional for local officials to use. The goal of the app was to ensure accuracy in a complex reporting process. We will apply the lessons learned in the future, and have already corrected the underlying technology issue. We take these issues very seriously, and are committed to improving and evolving to support the Democratic Party's goal of modernizing its election processes."

The Colorado Secretary of State's website shows the company's lists a Washington, D.C., office address and an Alexandria, Virginia, mailing address for the company.

Niemira is actively registered to vote in Denver, state records show.

The Nevada Democratic Party had planned to use the same app in its caucuses, scheduled for February 22, but has said it will find a different solution in the wake of the difficulties in Iowa.

The Denver address associated with Shadow, Inc. on file with the Colorado Secretary of State is a residential building in the Highland neighborhood. (Hayley Sanchez/CPR News)

Colorado Democratic Chair Morgan Carroll said the party was never planning on using the Shadow app at its March 7 caucuses, which no longer determine presidential candidates but are still the first step toward nominating candidates to state offices and the Congressional representatives.

“Colorado was never planning on using that app and we most certainly won’t be using it now,” Carroll said. 

Caucus leaders in Colorado will use “low tech” methods to report the results, she said.

“They are keeping the original paperwork, they are scanning it and they are sending it in (to the state party)," Carroll said.

The executive director of the state Republican party, Lx Fangonilo, said the app won’t be used at GOP caucuses, either.

The state will hold its first presidential primary in 20 years on March 3.

CPR News producer Michelle P. Fulcher contributed reporting to this story.

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