2019 Graduates of the Nebraska Water Leaders Academy

Class IX Nebraska Water Leaders Academy – November 22, 2019

Front row: Ross Lawrence, Lincoln; Melissa Panella, Lincoln; Ellen Argo, Lincoln; Lydia Hendrickson, North Platte; Crystal Powers, Lincoln; Sue Dempsey,Lincoln; Samantha Bartz, McCook.;

Back row: Steven Herdzina, Lincoln; Lynn Webster, Chadron; James Ostdiek, Lincoln; Cay Ewoldt, Lincoln; Wade Ellanger, Bute; Logan Ricley, Hastings; Jodi Kocher, Lincoln,

Not pictured:  Carolyn Hudson, Scottsbluff: Quinn Charling, Omaha

Leadership In The Workplace

Not only has every person who started the program also finished it, but a comprehensive study by the University of Nebraska has proved that following their academy experience, graduates are significantly more involved in their communities and more frequently demonstrate leadership in their workplaces.

Employers support the Academy experience for employees for a variety of reasons. Whether they run a multi-national company or a non-profit, good managers know that well-educated employees affect the bottom line in significant ways—they stay longer, so turnover expenses are minimized and they contribute to the organization in meaningful ways because they feel valued.

For more data about the program, view the 2016 Nebraska Water Leaders Academy Annual Report.

“Participating in the Nebraska Water Leaders Academy has given me important tools to educate and enable others to develop a sense of urgency in preserving and sustaining Nebraska’s water resources.”

Ann Williams

Class IV, HDR Engineering


Graduate Rate!

Every person who has started the program has also completed it!

Meet Academy graduates who are serving in leadership positions:

Matt Lukasiewicz, Class I

Matt was appointed to serve on the Nebraska State Irrigation Association and was elected to the Lower Loup Natural Resources Board of Directors.

Todd Schipporeit, Class III

Todd was elected to the Upper Loup Natural Resources Board of Directors.

Scott Snell, Class II

Scott serves on the City Council in Hasting, Nebraska.

Ryan McIntosh, Class VII

Ryan was appointed to serve on the Nebraska Environmental Trust Board of Directors.

Michelle Koch, Class I

Michelle was recently appointed as an assistant division administrator for water policy at the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission.

Brad Dunbar, Class I

Brad was recently appointed by the Governor to serve on the Nebraska Natural Resources Commission.

Kristi Boswell, Class I

Kristi was recently appointed as senior advisor to U. S. Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue.