Vikings of Distinction

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2014 Vikings of Distinction


  • Dick Christie, Albuquerque, NM, formerly Richard L. Johnson, Class of 1966. Hollywood actor, writer, and director. Dickʼs career started on the stage of North High and moved on to UNO, acting in many local Omaha community stages and dinner theatres.  Taking his talent to L.A. in 1980, he would, as he said, “get lucky” as actor Dick Christie. He starred in FOXʼs first sitcom, Small Wonder, and had many more roles in television and feature films over the past 33 years. Heʼs been a featured guest-starring on top-rated television series such as Hart to Hart, Eight is Enough and Newhart amongst others. Dickʼs most current role is on this seasonʼs The Bold and The Beautifulon CBS.

  • Christie A. Jensen Gehringer, Omaha, NE, Class of 1961, Friend of North High Christie is an outstanding volunteer at North High Magnet School, committed to the improvement and support of her alma mater. Since 2010, Christie has served as President of the Omaha North High School Foundation and writes the alumni newsletter. She is actively involved with the Viking Voyage, the Foundationʼs fund-raising campaign for North Highʼs 90th Anniversary in the fall of 2014. She has served on the Vikings of Distinction Committee since 1999 where she was a past Committee Chairman, Video and Program writer and past chairman of the Selection Committee, as well as her Class of 1961 reunion committee. Christie was a teacher for 33 years for the Omaha Public Schools. She is also an active member of AAUW, the Danish American Archive & Library, and Trinty Lutheran Church

  • Robert D. Greenlee, Lafayette, CO, Class of 1959 Bobʼs entrepreneurial spirit has led him to become a successful restauranteur, advertising executive, radio station owner, casino developer, microbrewery developer, a Boulder, Colorado City Councilman and the Mayor in 1998-99. He and his wife Diane are dynamic civic leaders and philanthropists and made possible the development of the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication at Iowa State University named in their honor. He is dedicated to providing excellent educational opportunities for children through programs they have established such as the “I Have a Dream” project they brought to Boulder, Colorado.

  • Bruce D. Hunter, Evanston, IL, Class of 1991 Bruce is a graduate of Norfolk State University and Emory University School of Law. Currently, he is an attorney with the Law office of Bruce D. Hunter P.C. L.L.O. in Evanston, IL. He is a member of the Urban League Young Professionals and in 2013 ran for the District 2 seat on the Omaha City Council. He is interested in providing jobs and opportunities for those in the inner city, enhancing green technology, and providing jobs through urban farming. He is dedicated to lowering crime in our communities and improving education for all children.

  • Ron Kaplan, Omaha, NE, Class of 1959 Ronʼs creative flair led him to be a founding partner in Smith Kaplan Allen and Reynolds Advertising Agency, now SKAR. Beginning in 1963, the agency gained a national reputation for itʼs work; at the time of Ronʼs retirement in 2000, the agency had not only grown but was one of the largest in the region. His civic involvement includes service on numerous community boards. Ron was also the recipient of many awards in writing and producing advertisements within his industry, was made a Lifetime Member of the Omaha Federation of Advertising, and in 1999 was honored by the American Advertising Federation with their highest award--the prestigious Silver Medal--for service to the community and his industry.

  • Michael L. Mench, LaFayette, CO, Class of 1963 Mike attended UNO earning degrees in English Literature and Criminal Justice. He served with the U.S. Army in Vietnam as a member of the Personal Security Detachment responsible for the safety of General Creighton W. Abrams, Commander of the US Military in Vietnam. Being an expert rifleman, he has served on SWAT teams and has also served various Police and Sheriffʼs departments across the country. Mike was a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Los Angeles, CA, from 1978- 1996 and in Denver, CO, from 1996 to 2001. He has been a senior level investigator experienced in complex criminal investigations and a team leader involved in operational and tactical missions. He is also a dedicated volunteer with the USO at the Denver International Airport, and other community service endeavors protecting others

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