2014 Recipients

-Rhodes Scholar and Educator-

Darryl J. Gless, Class of 1964, earned a B.A. Degree from the University of Nebraska in 1968. He was chosen as a Rhodes Scholar, a prestigious international award for selected foreign students to study at the University of Oxford, England. Also a Danforth Fellow and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, Gless earned a Masters in Philosophy from Oxford in 1971 and a Doctorate from Princeton University in 1975. He has devoted his career to the education of undergraduate students in English and has received numerous awards for excellence in teaching. In addition Gless has served as a Senior Associate Dean for the Arts and Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. In 1994 Gless was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the Council for the National Endowment for the Humanities which he chaired from 1999-2002. He is the son of Frank and Vivian Gless.
-Veterinary Educator-

Dale M.Grotelueschen, Class of 1967, is the University of Nebraska Great Plains Veterinary Educational Center Director. After receiving a DVM from the University of Missouri in 1974, he earned an MS in Clinical Sciences from Colorado State University in 1992. He served as a managing veterinarian with the Beef Cattle Technical Services team, Pfizer Animal Health. He was a University of Nebraska professor in Veterinary Extension and Diagnostics and Director of the Panhandle Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Grotelueschen has also served in private veterinary practice. He is a past president of the Academy of Veterinary Consultants, the American Association of Extension Veterinarians and the Nebraska Veterinary Medical Association. Grotelueschen currently serves as a director and secretary of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners Foundation. Grotelueschen received the Nebraska Veterinary Medical Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 2000 and 2012. He is the son of Melvin and Loretta Grotelueschen.
-Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court-

Michael G. Heavican, Class of 1965, was appointed by the Governor in 2006 as the Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court. Prior to his Supreme Court appointment, he served as a federal and state prosecutor. In 1991, he left state service to become an Assistant U. S. Attorney for the District of Nebraska. After ten years in that office, Heavican was appointed in 2001 by President George W. Bush to be the U. S. Attorney for the District of Nebraska, a position he held until becoming Chief Justice of Nebraska. Heavican earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Nebraska and a Juris Doctor degree from the UNL School of Law. He is the son of Martin F. and Bernice Heavican.
-NASA Engineer-

Robert D. Legler, Class of 1944, served in the U.S. Merchant Marines following his high school graduation. In 1965 he became part of NASA Flight Control as an electronics engineer and was one of a few who were involved with the Gemini, Apollo, Apollo-Soyuz, Skylab, Space Shuttle and Space International Station programs. In April, 1970 as a member of the flight control team Legler was instrumental in the successful return of the Apollo 13 astronauts by solving the battery recharge problem. At his retirement he received numerous awards and accolades from astronauts and his peers who acknowledged his extraordinary contributions and exceptional support to the human space flight program. Legler was also instrumental in the development of youth soccer in south Texas and served as the Commissioner of the South Youth Texas Soccer Association. In 1985 he was inducted into the South Texas Youth Soccer Association Hall of Fame. He is the son of Leonard and Nell Legler.
-Jewelry Designer-

Lawrence Vrba, Class of 1964, is a costume jewelry designer who has designed and manufactured jewelry since the 1970's. Vrba established an internationally known company, Lawrence Vrba Limited and has been recognized as one of the finest designers in his field. His jewelry has been showcased on the Broadway Stage as well as at formal balls and vintage jewelry shops. In 2013 he was honored with the Theatre Development Fund Irene Sharaff award. Vrba was invited by the government of the Czech Republic to serve as a marketing adviser to their import/export departments. He attended the University of Nebraska and served in the military during the Vietnam War. Vrba has lived in New York City since then. He is the son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Rudy Vrba.