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Five Questions For Nick Weander

11 Dec

We wanted to get to know a bit more about what is happening in Sarpy County, so we invited Nick Weander from Olsson Associates to be the guest speaker for our December Coffee Chat, Friday, December 15, 2017 at 8 a.m. at Spielbound, 3229 Harney Street.

Nick is a certified professional transportation planner with experience in local, regional and statewide transportation programs. Mr. Weander has shown to be a problem solver with experience in developing and managing complex, multi-jurisdictional projects and programs. Nick’s proven experience in building relationships and fostering trust between local, state, and federal agencies and the public at large. Nick is a 2008 graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha and completed his Master of Public Administration at UNO in 2011. Since leaving UNO, Nick has worked for the Omaha-Council Bluffs Metropolitan Area Planning Agency, the Tennessee Department of Transportation, and now works as a Senior Planner at Olsson Associates. Current projects of note include the 30th Street Road Diet in Omaha, the Lincoln Transportation Implementation Strategy, and the 180th/192nd Street Grade and Alignment Study in Sarpy County.

We asked him five questions . . .

What is your preferred mode of transportation?

On the days that I am able, I prefer to walk to work. I can generally make that happen about 3 days a week. Project meetings, client visits, out of town work and other responsibilities often require me to have a car at my disposal.

What, in your opinion, is the greatest challenge to multi-modal transportation in Omaha?

Land use patterns and residential decision-making. Transportation (especially trip distance) should be a part of your consideration about where you live and work. I’m fortunate enough to live and work in a mixed use development here. We really need to do a better job of explaining/educating these trade-offs as a part of how people decide where to live and work. Continue reading

Five Questions with . . . Willie Hamilton

18 Oct

Willie Hamilton, Executive Director and Founder of Black Men United, is a true grassroots leader in Omaha.  Concerned about violence and other challenges in the Black community and wanting to create a better environment for his children he started Black Men United as a small grassroots organization dedicated to empowering and improving the community.

Join us this Friday, October 20th, at Big Mama’s, for our monthly Coffee Chat where Willie will be our guest speaker.

We asked him five questions . . .

1. What is your preferred mode of transportation?
Car and Uber.

2. What in your opinion is the biggest challenge to Multi Modal Transportation in Omaha?
Funding and resources – don’t believe there is a strong urge in Omaha to put emphasis on public transportation. Continue reading

Five Questions with . . . Kara Eastman

15 Aug

Kara Eastman is the President and CEO of Omaha Healthy Kids Alliance, Vice-Chair of the Metropolitan Community College Board of Governors, is married to Scott Eastman, Professor of History at Creighton, and mom to Sabina, a Junior at Central High School. She’s also running for Congress in Nebraska’s 2nd District. You can learn more about her platform at her website:

She’s our guest for our August Coffee Chat and we asked her five questions:

1. What is your preferred mode of transportation?
2. What, in your opinion, is the greatest challenge to multi-modal transportation in Omaha?
Political will
3. What, in your opinion, the the greatest multi-modal success in Omaha?
The Old Market
4. How did you come to have an interest in transportation?
Through my work in building healthy communitiies
5. If you could magically change one thing about the transportation systems in Omaha, without limit to budget or feasibility, what would it be?
I would create an energy efficient, public transportation system that connects north, south, and east Omaha (I might even consider adding West O)