Town Hall Forums: Conversation & Collaboration

This fall Junior League of Omaha members had the exciting opportunity to participate in town hall forums that sought to both educate members on the new community impact focus areas and gather feedback regarding membership engagement. Approximately 130 Junior League of Omaha members attended, and almost 50 shared feedback through surveys!

The Community Research and Development Committee and President-Elect-Elect Katie Triplett, on behalf of the Membership Engagement Ad Hoc Committee, organized these meetings for Junior League of Omaha members as a way to engage in powerful conversations about League experiences and shared visions for the future. According to President-Elect-Elect Katie Triplett, “members really are excited about building a more diverse and inclusive League experience. JLO leadership is committed to participating in AJLI’s Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives, so we are excited our membership is already supportive of these efforts.”

In January, League members will be voting on one of three areas in which to focus future Junior League of Omaha programs: Disenfranchised Youth; Hunger and Access to Healthy Foods; or Abuse in Women and Children. Additionally, the Membership Engagement Ad Hoc Committee’s focus is to ensure that the Junior League of Omaha continues to attract and retain members by providing enriching opportunities. With such significant topics of interest, it was the perfect time to coordinate conversations and seek feedback from the many perspectives shared by the membership.

As a result of the conversations, questions, and suggestions garnered by the town hall forums, the Membership Engagement Ad Hoc Committee will present a report to the Board, which will feature current information on where the League stands, as well as recommendations from other Leagues and from AJLI. Specific ideas and concepts to bear in mind while planning for the 2019-2020 year will also be included.

The town hall forums have provided a wonderful way for League members to meet and engage with other League members in a smaller setting. President-Elect-Elect Katie Triplett stated, “I’m so appreciative so many of our members joined us for these forums and shared so candidly! In addition to receiving great details about how to make League membership even more amazing, we also had an opportunity to meet and visit with members we hadn’t met before. Members also shared with me how much they liked the forums – we are going to try to work these town hall forums into future years! We want to ensure the Junior League of Omaha stays transparent, relevant, and influential for years to come!”

Recruitment for next year’s New Member group begins in February. For more information about joining the Junior League of Omaha, visit https://www.jlomaha.org/join-us/.  

“JLO Class of the Century” Welcomes 86 New Members

The New Members kicked off their League year with their first meeting on Aug. 28 at Security National Bank, where the women got to know their core groups and learned about their upcoming year.

September’s New Member Meeting focused on Community Impact. The women enjoyed a football and fall theme with beer and pizza.

The Communications Council presented at the October New Member Meeting with a Halloween theme.

November activities included a social at the Makery and meeting at The Mattress Factory. New Members learned more about the 100th Year Anniversary Celebration and guest Marian Andersen shared her volunteerism background with the New Member Class.

Additionally so far this League year, New Members celebrated and acknowledged the significance of their membership class, complete with a hashtag they chose (#JLOClassOfTheCentury) and a special class logo.

New Member Committee Chair Megan Horn focused on creating a theme and tone of building League relationships and sharing the experiences and community impact opportunities available. The committee has revised the format of the meetings and focused more on providing experiences and helping build connections.

Recruitment for next year’s New Member group begins in February. For more information about joining the Junior League of Omaha, visit https://www.jlomaha.org/join-us/.

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Congratulations to Mary Lynn as a 2015 Junior League of Omaha Sustainer Hall of Fame award winner.

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Tell us about your family?
Husband Dick, two grown children, Todd Reiser and Sally Christensen, 5 grandchildren, Tyler, Nate, Luke Christensen, Caroline and Courtney Reiser

Pets: mixed breed hound, Cisco

Hometown: Lincoln, NE

College: UNL and UNO

Sorority: Alpha Phi

Job/Business: Director, UNO Center for Economic Education

What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life?
Serving as JLO President which led me in a entirely new career direction as an administrator at UNO.

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Tell us about your family? Husband, Mike.

Pets: Sage, 6 year old English Setter

Hometown: Mapleton, Iowa

College: Undergrad: Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine: Iowa State University

Job/Business:  Associate veterinarian at: Animal Clinic of Council Bluffs and Glenwood Veterinary Clinic

What are your favorite restaurant(s) in Omaha? Twisted Fork, M’s Pub, Wheatfield’s

What other organizations are you affiliated with? Rotary Club in Council Bluffs  Continue reading “Connecting with …”

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Why did you join the Junior League? To become more active in the Omaha community and meet new people!

Tell us about your family?  I’m very close to my family! It would be weird if I didn’t talk to them every day. I have one older sister and a 12 year old nephew that I adore!

Pets: One cat named Lucy.

Hometown: Omaha

College: University of Nebraska @ Omaha

Job/Business: Operations Manager at ACCESSbank

What was your favorite placement and why? This is my first active year and I’ve loved my placement as the Distribution Coordinator for Project Hope Pack!  With this role I’ve been able to see the impact that providing backpacks has to the different agencies.  They are always so appreciative and thankful.

What is your favorite thing about living in Omaha?  There is always something fun to do!

What is your favorite song? I love anything by Eric Church.  I’ve lost track of how many of his concerts I’ve been to!

What is your favorite thing to do on a day off? Catch up on reading or watch Netflix.  

What is your favorite season and why? I love everything about fall: football, bonfires, pumpkin carving!

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go? I’d love to take a month or two off work and just travel and see where I end up.  My list of places I want to visit is very long!

What is one of your favorite quotes? One person can make a difference and everyone should try—John F Kennedy

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Why did you join the Junior League? I joined the Junior League as a way to meet women throughout the community and as a way to give back to the community of Omaha. Junior League has really been a fantastic way for me to meet women and get involved with awesome events.

Tell us about your family? Husband-Travis, three children, Izabel (8), Nolan (6), Nash (5 months)

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Pets: Dog Boxer/ bulldog mix-Rocky

Hometown: Laurens, Iowa

College: Clarkson College

Job/Business: Manager of Diagnostic Imaging, Nebraska Orthopedic Hospital

What was your favorite placement and why?

I love the American Girl Fashion Show. It is such an amazing fundraiser that has a lot of things going on-it gets young girls and their families to participate in a weekend event that is creating memories they will cherish forever. The event is big, with so many moving parts- it’s awesome to watch how it all comes together.

What is your favorite thing about living in Omaha?

I grew up in a very small farm town, so Omaha is a BIG, yet a small town to me. It has a variety of events to appeal to any personality. So, to me the diversity it has to offer, yet small town feel.

What is your favorite song?  Billy Joel-Uptown girl

What is your favorite season and why?
I like summer. We are a very active family so when the weather gets nice it’s great to be outdoors-working in the yard, hiking, bike rides-you name it!

What is your favorite book or the last good book you read?
Out of the spin cycle-by Jen Hatmaker. It was a gift from a good friend and is truly a reminder that as women our roles change on a dime so it’s good to know that there are ways to lighten our loads…

What is your favorite television show?  The Voice

What is one of your favorite quotes?

Read this the other day, pretty catchy “The purpose of life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely with a preserved body, but rather to slide in sideways, totally worn out shouting, ‘woohoo, what a ride!”  -unknown

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Why did you join the Junior League?  I joined the JLO to meet new people and to become more involved in Omaha.

Tell us about your family? Husband (Michael Stillmock).  My parents (Fred and Marianne) and my sister Kathryn Anderson (who is in the JLO) all live in Omaha.  I am an aunt to the three cutest little boys!

Pets: 7 month old black lab named Bismark.Stillmock_Patricia (7)

Hometown: Omaha, Nebraska

College: University of Kansas – majored in Art History and Communications Studies

Sorority: Kappa Alpha Theta

Job/Business: Sr. Manager, Employee Development at First National Bank.  I have worked in Human Resources at First National Bank for just over three years.  Some of my responsibilities include managing the Corporate Internship Program, the Management Trainee Program and the bank’s emerging professionals group.

What was your favorite placement and why?

I love being on Project Hope Pack because the committee is so fun and I love getting to meet new people at the project shifts.  The impact the backpacks have on the community is unbelievable and makes being on this committee a truly unique experience. Continue reading “Connecting with Patricia”

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Why did you join the Junior League? I joined the Junior League of Omaha to meet more like-minded women. I have met a lot of wonderful ladies and I am so glad I joined!

Tell us about your family? I am blessed with a wonderful family! I am the oldest of four kids. I have two younger sisters and a younger brother. I’m the only child living in Omaha right now and I get lots of quality time with my fantastic parents!

Hometown: Omaha, NE

College: I completed my undergrad studies at UNL and my graduate studies at UNO.

Sorority: I am a proud Chi Omega!  (Kappa chapter at UNL)

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Tell us about your family? I am the only child of Tom and Holly Lewis.  I have been dating Justin for eight years and consider my best friends to be like sisters! ThanksgivingMom&Dad

Pets: I help take care of my parents dogs, Harry and Mo.

Hometown: Omaha

College: Undergrad @ UNL; Masters programs through Doane College.

Job/Business: First Grade Teacher, Paddock Road Elementary, Westside Community Schools

What was your favorite placement and why?

My favorite placement was Chair of the High Heel Dash.  It was fun to take on a fundraiser as vice-chair and then be able to follow through for another year.  It was hard work but I had the chance to meet a lot of people in the community, in the League, and I learned a lot about volunteerism, planning, and fundraising!  Continue reading “Connecting with …”

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Why did you join the Junior League? To meet people, and it worked! Some of my best friends and favorite people I met though the league.

Tell us about your family? I married my high school sweetheart, Nick Thielen, in September of 2008. He went to Colgate University in Upstate NY and Law school at University of Nebraska. He is an attorney at Kutak Rock and also very interested and involved in the Omaha Community. We have a goldendoodle named Chloe that we got from the humane society the night of his first law school final exam.  We just had a baby, Miss Audrey who is absolutely incredible and the love of our lives. She was born Nov 21st 2014.

Pets: Chole – Goldendoodle and baby #1 of the family Chloe_2

Hometown: All over – I was adopted in Ohio, moved over seas to Germany, Spain, and England. Then back to the US to Michigan, then Nebraska, Boston and back to Nebraska.

College: I went to Boston University and LOVED IT

Job/Business: I work for Nebraska Children and Families Foundation as the Assistant Vice President of Strategic Partnerships. My job is to cultivate donors and community engagement for NCFF.

What was your favorite placement and why?

My favorite placement was the development and first year running of Project Hope Pack. I loved working with the community to find out what was needed and then strategize with a group of amazing women to make it happen. I really enjoyed how closely we worked together during the development year and the first year of running the project as co-chair. I met some of my best friends in the league during those two years. It was a blast working out all the logistic and small details to make the project a success and it amazes me to see how well the project is doing and the difference it is making in the community. Continue reading “Connecting with …”