Vikings of Distinction


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2013 Vikings of Distinction

2013
Past Honorees

Erna Nickelsen Clanton, Class of 1937, Omaha, NE. - A lifetime of music performance, including directing and mentoring young people and she is now introducing music therapy to seniors citizens! Ernaʼs extensive music training and great musical gifts raised the musical consciousness of several generations. From the lead alto soloist with the Omaha Symphony to church choir director for 45 years to founder of bell choirs, she now shares her talents for making beautiful music at the Immanuel Village.

James R. Duffack, Class of 1960, Omaha, NE - A love for cars, fast and fun, led to his 40-year business success story in Omaha and Council Bluffs, Iowa. He advanced from his 1947 Chevy Fleetline hotrod, that he fixed up, to his first used car lot Duffack Car Sales. Jim went on to own his Toyota dealership in the Bluffs. He built an award winning business based on excellent performance, operating standards, and customer satisfaction. His love of collector cars has led to his amazing personal collection! Jim enjoys giving back to the community through themany charities that he supports.

Donald J. Parrish, Class of 1961, Winter Park,FL - A 40-year career in the military began with his West Point graduation in 1965. Retiring as a US Army Lieutenant Colonel, he taught and served in many venues around the world. He served in Viet Nam as a battery commander, and as a mathematics professor at West Point, and after US Naval Postgraduate School in Operations Research and Systems Analysis, he took on other complex duties. Don was awarded a Bronze Star among many awards. He is active in skiing, Special Olympics and Habitat for Humanity.

Ron A. Sayers, Class of 1965, San Diego, CA - After graduating from UNO where he played football, he was drafted by the San Diego Chargers. Leaving the NFL after an injury, he obtained masters and advanced degrees in Educational Counseling at San Diego State University and he has devoted his life to working with children. As a school psychologist,a career counselor and coach, he has had an impact on hundreds of studentsʼ lives over the years. Ronʼs committment to education and young people extend into his church and community.

Lorna Fischer Ruebelmann, Class of 1961, Silver City, NM - She excelled in a long career in public administration in Wyoming where she held a variety of positions. From being Energy Conservation Director for the State, and President of Wind River Consulting solar planning, she became the Wyoming Democratic Party Executive Director, and State Labor Standards Compliance Officer. Lornaʼs community efforts center around a foundation for hospice care in Tanzania and Colorado,Rotary Exchange Programs and she was the technical director for an award winning Council for the Humanities Program, “That Gold Mine in the Sky.”

Edward T. Reed, Retired Faculty - He was a French teacher extraordinaire beginning in 1961, Department Head of Foreign Languages in 1975, Curriculum Specialist from 1979 until retirement in 1996, as well as the magnet schoolʼs Recruitment Director. He served as Assistant Athletic Director from 1982-1996 among many other leadership positons. Ed was a member of the Vikings of Distinction Committee from 1983-2011 and an original member of the Omaha North High School Foundation. He has been active in swimming and golf all of his life, an expert on the WWII Flying Tigers, and a world traveler. Ed Reed was an exceptional teacher, mentor, leader and always a tremendous advocate for Omaha North HighMagnet School.



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