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Eastern Kingbird by Mike Benkis

Special Events

Meet your ASO officer and director nominees for 2020


After defining ASO’s short- and long-term needs, the committee recommends re-electing: 

  •  President: Bob Wells  

  •  Treasurer: Betty Fullerton  

  •  Secretary: Shannon Engberg  

Jackie Scholar and Virginia Stauffer will step down from the board, but will continue to chair/serve on committees. 

First Vice President, Christine Jacobsen 

Current position: Director of Education at Lauritzen Gardens 

In their own words: I have worked in the natural resources/environmental education field for 20+ years and am skilled in Renewable Energy, Business Development, Budgeting, Volunteer Management, Natural Resources, Contract Negotiations, and Fundraising. With a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree focused on Non-Profit Administration, I am a strong business development professional. My favorite activities include bird feeding and watching, hiking, reading, and exploring state and national parks. 

Second Vice President,  Meagan Deichert 

Current position: President and CEO at Keep Nebraska Beautiful 

In their own words: I am passionate about ASO’s mission to promote environmental awareness in our community. Now more than ever I believe people want good information from reputable organizations about our environment, and I have spent most of my career staying abreast of environmental law and the obstacles we face in preserving our natural environment. I have a love of the outdoors and travel, and I try to make it to at least one place I’ve never been every year. On the weekends you can usually find me walking my dog around a lake. 


Scott Bradley   

Current position: IT Auditor at Great Western Bank 

In their own words: Since I was very young, I have loved the outdoors. I always enjoyed learning about the natural environment and identifying what was in it. I was active in scouting and achieved Eagle Scout. Many years later, I was fortunate to discover the world of birds. It was about four years ago when my youngest brother invited me to a MAPS bird banding session with Rick Schmid. I honestly wasn’t sure what to think about waking up so early to see birds, but somewhere between the expectations of hiking several miles, sweating and learning something new, my interest was piqued. Once there I was hooked, and I continued returning each week to band birds. A year later, I bought my first pair of binoculars, found eBird and have not been able to get enough! An opportunity to serve with the ASO would be an honor.  

Michelle Foss   

Current Position: Manager of Stewardship and Research, Fontenelle Forest 

In their own words: I possess a skillset combining project management and leadership principles with habitat restoration and outreach in non-profit environments. In addition to my job, where I serve as an advisory member of the Nebraska Prescribed Fire Council, I serve as vice president on the Green Bellevue Board, where my specialty is native habitat management. When I’m not working on various projects for those organizations, I’m an assistant scoutmaster for my daughter’s Scouts BSA troop. I’ve had the privilege of working at Rocky Mountain National Park as an intern, and spending time in the outdoors in the many places I’ve lived.  

Heidi Walz   

Current Position: Family Manager;  Senior Project Manager, Vic Gutman & Assoc.· Realtor, Nebraska Realty 

In their own words: Since joining Vic Gutman & Associates in 2003, I have served as Project Manager or Operations Manager for dozens of events, including the Omaha Farmers Market, Omaha’s Holiday Lights Festival, the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff, Omaha Summer Arts Festival, Omaha 150, Detroit / Windsor CarTunes on Parade Public Art Project, Cook-off and Mutual of Omaha’s Wild About Omaha Weekend. Semi-retired, I now work part-time and contribute to special projects while serving as a resource for facility and logistics planning. Most recently, I managed the Omaha Celebrates America concert and firework show at Memorial Park after it was brought back from cancellation in 2019. Some of my favorite activities include reading, traveling, organizing (anything!) and enjoying the outdoors with my husband and two sons. Our oldest is an “avid birder” who has introduced our family to a whole new world in the last two years!  

SPECIAL THANKS to the Nominating Committee for its time and hard work. If you have feedback regarding nominees you would like to share with the board, please contact Virginia at