New Fellows, Three Long-Time Legal Professionals Honored by Nebraska State Bar Foundation

Three long-time members of the legal profession were honored March 9 in Omaha at the 31st annual Fellows Dinner of the Nebraska State Bar Foundation.

Administrative Judge Ron Lahners received the Bar Foundation’s Distinguished Service Award in recognition of his outstanding service to the legal profession. Others honored were Omaha attorney Gary Gotsdiner, who received the Bar Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and retired District Court Judge Mary Gilbride of Wahoo, who received the Legal Pioneer Award.

Also at the event, 30 Nebraska lawyers and judges were inducted as Bar Foundation Fellows, joining 761 colleagues who have been nominated for this honor over the past five decades. Lawyers are invited to become Fellows based on their integrity and character, their distinction in the profession or in the community, their contributions to the profession or the community, and their contributions to the Bar Foundation.

Steve Guenzel of Lincoln, president of the Bar Foundation, was master of ceremonies for the event at the Holland Center. The Bar Foundation’s Law-Related Education theme for 2018-2019 is “Championing Civility.”

“At a time of great political and public discord, the Nebraska State Bar Foundation offers resources and programs to help educators and others teach and model ways to explore and discuss controversial topics in a rational and respectful manner,” Guenzel said. The Bar Foundation offers Law-Related Education programs for Nebraska teachers and students and manages the Roman L. Hruska Institute for the Administration of Justice, the Standing Bear Scholarship Fund and the Dan Jewell Trial Institute, Guenzel added.

Headquartered in Lincoln, the Bar Foundation is dedicated to serving the citizens of Nebraska and the legal profession through the administration and funding of innovative programs directed at the improvement of the administration of justice and the fulfillment of the American vision of equal justice for all.

The Bar Foundation’s new Class of Fellows is listed below:

Jeffrey Blumel, Omaha

Max Burbach, Omaha

Ronald Comes, Omaha

Patrick Cooper, Omaha

M. Douglas Deitchler, Lincoln

Robert Gonderinger, Omaha

Michael Huffer, Omaha

Jeffrey Jarecki, Albion

Bradley Kalkwarf, Wilber

Jennifer Kulwicki, Lincoln

Hon. John Marsh, Kearney

Michael Matukewicz, Omaha

Richard Moberly, Lincoln

Edward Morse, Omaha

Denise Myers, Cairo

Hon. Michael Nelson, Omaha

Justice Jonathan Papik, Lincoln

Hon. Holly J. Parsley, Lincoln

Hon. Michael Piccolo, North Platte

Todd Richardson, Omaha

Hon. Rick Schreiner, Beatrice

Lawrence Sheehan, Omaha

Hon. Julie Smith, Tecumseh

Hon. Michael Smith, Plattsmouth

Cathy Trent-Vilim, Omaha

Janine Ucchino, Omaha

Kelly Werts, Humboldt

Hon. Paul Wess, Alliance

Hon. Horacio Wheelock, Omaha

Melanie Whittamore-Mantzios, Lincoln