Omaha, Neb., August 27, 2020 –Leadership Omaha (LO), one of the nation’s longest-running community leadership programs, has graduated its latest “best class ever” – a diverse group of leaders engaged in precedent-setting activities throughout the region.

The 10-month course, nearly half of which was impacted by exponential change caused by a worldwide health pandemic, focused on opportunities in Greater Omaha designed to fuel a vibrant community characterized by forward-momentum. The result: collaboration in the form of small-group projects that translated insight into action, along with motivated leaders who are ready to strengthen and transform the community.

One LO small group, “GRL PWR,” partnered with Smart Gen Society, an Omaha-based nonprofit that educates youth and parents to avoid negative digital-world implications. The LO group hosted a virtual presentation for Class 42 and Leadership Omaha Alumni to learn more about Smart Gen Society.

“We really enjoyed our partnership with Smart Gen Society,” said Leadership Omaha Graduate Jillian Humphries. “Not only did we get to know one another on a deeper level, but we found ways to showcase each team member’s unique skills and talents.”

To meet the needs of families quarantined during the health crisis, the LO small group, “We Are One” partnered with The Union for Contemporary Art to create and deliver 70 art kits to 32 families. Demand for the kits was so high, an additional 120 kits were made and delivered.

“Our project was a quick reaction to an immediate need. The Union for Contemporary Art continues the effort through an ongoing program, Art + Life Kits, as part of its ongoing Radical Heart Initiative,” said Jenny Zimmer, Leadership Omaha Class 42 graduate and “We Are One” group member.

“It was truly an honor to guide this class of leaders, especially during unique pandemic circumstances. Their commitment to staying engaged took determination and was inspiring to see.  This class, like the alumni before them, exceeded expectations and I’m excited for their continued leadership in our community. Congratulations, Class 42!” said Liz Kerrigan, Greater Omaha Chamber’s leadership strategist.

The Graduates of Leadership Omaha Class 42: 

Sabrina Ahern, LEO A DALY

Brian Anderson, University of Nebraska Foundation

Tanin Arkfeld, Union Pacific Railroad

Kiley Armitage, QLI

Caitlin Bolte, Confluence

Nicole Carritt, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Kelli Cavey, The Omaha Community Foundation

Sam J. Cooper, TitleCore National

Savannah Cuevas, Greater Omaha Chamber

Steve Eck, FNBO

Elizabeth Evans, Jackson Lewis P.C.

Eric L. Ewing, Great Plains Black History Museum

Lauren Foster, Greater Omaha Chamber

Kate Gallagher, Buffett Early Childhood Institute

Steph Gould, American National Bank

Scott Hahn, Koenig | Dunne, PC, LLO

Mark Haner, LinkedIn

Adam Hartung, CIT

Kamron Hasan, Husch Blackwell LLP

James Hawthrone, Metropolitan Community College

Jillian Humphries, Frost Media Group

Brad Jones, MyStaff Inc

Jay Kline, White Lotus Group

Sharlyn Konfrst, Farm Credit Services of America

Gerald Kuhn II, City of Omaha

Laura Langford, Omaha Public Power District

Emily Lindsey, Starbucks Coffee Company

Itzel Lopez, AIM Institute

Abby Mack, Carson Wealth

Eric Mayberry, Omaha World Herald

Brian Miles, Bridges Trust

Pat Morris, DRT LLC

Erica Pieper, RISE

Brian Poppe, Mutual of Omaha

Katherine Porto, Nebraska Medicine

Laurent Quenaud, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Cynthia Ray, BVH Architecture

Josh Render, Kiewit Building Group

Eli Rigatuso, Bellevue University

Mark Rodgers, Core Bank

Toby Samuelson, Morrissey Engineering

Allison Schorr Zach, ICAN – Institute for Career Advancement Needs

Vanessa Silke, Baird Holm LLP

Kyle Soares, Bank of the West

Nick Thielen, EHPV Management Group Inc.

Andrew Wesely, Ayars & Ayars, Inc.

Troy Wharton, Lozier Foundation

Andy Yosten, HDR

Jenny Zimmer, Alley Poyner Macchietto Architecture

The application window for Class 43 has closed. Applications for Class 44 will be available in early 2021. Class members are chosen based on their demonstrated community involvement and vision for Omaha. Participants must attend at least 80 percent of the seminars to graduate.

For more information about Leadership Omaha, contact Liz Kerrigan, leadership strategist, at 402-978-7913.

About Greater Omaha
Greater Omaha is a No. 1 ranked up-and-coming-tech hotspot and Time magazine’s 2017 No. 3 Most Up-and-Coming City in America. Recognized for its “We Don’t Coast” attitude, and named America’s 2019 No. 2 Best Small City by Resonance Consultancy, Greater Omaha is home to more than 30 communities and nearly 1 million people, with a steady economic growth that outpaces the nation.