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Phi Beta Lambda has successful national conferenceTell North Platte what you think

For the second year in a row, Nebraska Phi Beta Lambda had six first place finishes at the recent National Leadership Conference in Anaheim, Calif.

Overall, Nebraska PBL finished with 41 Top 10 finishes, placing third in overall state rankings behind Florida and Arkansas, said Ted Harshbarger, Nebraska PBL Adviser.

More than 80 Nebraska PBL members, advisers, and guests attended the annual conference June 22-25. Over 1,800 attended from across the country including student members from other countries.

Six first places

Out of the 41 national awards won, Nebraska PBL had six first place winners, including two each from North Platte Community College and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

The top awardees from Nebraska were (hometowns in parenthesis where available, followed by school and event): Jenna Woitaszewski (Wood River), Julia Downey (Merna), Tyler Pooschke (Elkhorn), and Taylor Ziegler (Scottsbluff) – Doane College – Parliamentary Procedure Team; Faron Morgan (North Platte) – North Platte Community College – Help Desk; Julie Hart (North Platte) – North Platte Community College – Word Processing; Allie Buesing (Cozad), Rachel Henry (Peru), and Jamie Theye (Odell) – Peru State – Community Service Project; Amy Chin (Columbus) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Computer Applications; Daniel Kistler (Grand Island) and Tyler Wellman (Syracuse) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Financial Services. All of the winners earned monetary awards as part of their first place honors.

Other Top 10 finishes

The following list includes the winners, city/state when available, the college/university, and the event:

Second place

Ashley Noltensmeier (McCook) and Veronica Waddell (Indianola) – McCook Community College – Desktop Publishing

Kasha Messersmith (McCook) and Veronica Waddell (Indianola) – McCook Community College – Digital Video Production

Kirsten Klitz (West Point) and Trevor Willis (Desert Hills, Ariz.) – Midland University – Business Decision Making

Jamie Theye (Odell) – Peru State – Future Business Educator

Peter Raun (Minden) – University of Nebraska Omaha - Telecommunications

Third place

Cindie Watts (Omaha) – Midland University – Business Presentation

Beth Tyler (Hartford, S.D.) – Nebraska Wesleyan University – International Business

Kadie Hays (Wellfleet) – North Platte Community College – Word Processing

John Beal (Auburn) and Richard Oppitz (Topeka, Kan.) – Peru State – Network Design

Kelsey Martinsen (Primrose) – University of Nebraska at Kearney – Accounting Principles

Brooke Sullivan (Lincoln) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Computer Applications

Fourth place

Mary Ellen Martin (St. Libory) – Peru State – Future Business Educator

Daniel Kistler (Grand Island) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Financial Concepts

Fifth place

Leslee Damrow (Max) – Doane College – Accounting for Professionals

Melissa Bravo (North Platte) – North Platte Community College – Database Design & Applications

Rachel Henry (Peru) – Peru State – Job Interview

Ryan Arnold (Bellevue), Amanda Jo Cleek (Papillion), and Tricia Lempka (Cook) – Peru State – Strategic Analysis & Decision Making

Brandon Staroscik (Beatrice ) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Cyber Security

Tiffany Mewes-Dunn (Wymore) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln- Justice Administration

Sixth place

Sierra Koehler (Minnetonka, Minn.) - University of Nebraska-Lincoln- Business Presentation

Seventh place

Carlos Dominguez (McCook) and Kasha Messersmith (McCook) - McCook Community College- Desktop Publishing

Josh West-Lesher (Steele City) - Peru State College- Financial Concepts

Shawon Nixon (Lincoln) - Peru State College- Retail Management


North Platte Community College- Local Chapter Annual Business Report

Jenna Edwards (Benkelman) - University of Nebraska at Kearney- Accounting for Professionals

Amy Chin (Columbus) and Tyler Wellman (Syracuse) - University of Nebraska-Lincoln- Emerging Business Issues

Marilyn Buresh (Lincoln), Tiffany Mewes-Dunn (Wymore), Brooke Sullivan (Lincoln) - University of Nebraska-Lincoln-Human Resource Management

Kevin Thor (Stanton) - University of Nebraska-Lincoln- Public Speaking

Jeremy Fricke (Lincoln) - Wayne State College- Microeconomics


Faron Morgan (North Platte) - North Platte Community College- Cyber Security

Marilyn Buresh (Lincoln) and Tosha Skinner (Lincoln)- University of Nebraska-Lincoln- Business Ethics

Amber Kutnink (Cambridge) - Wayne State College- Contemporary Sports Issues


Tyler Pooschke (Elkhorn) & Jenna Woitaszewski (Wood River) - Doane College- Economic Analysis & Decision Making

Cindie Watts (Omaha) - Midland University- Client Service

Rebekha Dostal (North Bend) and Amy Poole (Ashland) - Peru State College- Peru State College

Who’s Who in Phi Beta Lambda

Peter Raun (Minden), Amber Kutnink (Cambridge), and Tiffany Mewes-Dunn (Wymore) were all recipients of the Who’s Who in PBL recognition. Raun and Kutnink were honored as national officers while Mewes-Dunn was Nebraska’s honoree.

Other finalists

Sierra Koehler (Minnetonka, Minn.) – University of Nebraska-Lincoln - Client Services

Jacob Long (Kansas City, Mo.) and Paige Riza (Ravenna, Texas) – Peru State - Integrated Marketing Campaign

Ronicka Fairchild (Lincoln) - University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Job Interview

Stacy Manson (Crete) – Doane College – Sales Presentation

Other recognitions

Kathy McCune (Sutherland), a co-adviser at North Platte Community College, was recognized as Nebraska’s Adviser of the Year.

The Nebraska PBL Chapter was also recognized for placing in the Top 10 of PBL stats in the February Frenzy.

Local chapters supporting the cause were the University of Nebraska Omaha and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Nebraska PBL finished third with 57.2 points.

Marilyn Buresh (Lincoln) and Tiffany Mewes-Dunn (Wymore), both of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln PBL chapter, received the President’s Award for completing the highest level of the association’s Career and Membership Achievement Program.

As a state, Nebraska was top among the Mountain Plains states having 21 members complete at least one of the three different levels of CMAP.

The Nebraska chapter was honored for having tied for the second most professional division members with 18, along with Colorado. In addition, Nebraska finished tied for second in the Mountain Plains having 50 new members in the largest increase in state chapter membership. Also, Nebraska finished second behind Oklahoma for the second largest state chapter having achieved 300 members for the year.

The North Platte Community College and Peru State College chapters were recognized as Gold Seal Chapters of Merit.

Two individuals from Nebraska served as workshop presenters. Dr. Kyle Ryan and Dr. Sheri Grotrian-Ryan (Syracuse), Associate Professors at Peru State College, provided a workshop entitled, “Linking Service Learning and Mentoring.” Wanda Samson, a retired high school teacher from Fremont and professional division member, also attended the conference and served as a judge in the competitive events.

Harshbarger (Humboldt) was elected as the Chair-Elect for the National FBLA-PBL Board of Directors. Harshbarger, a 17-year state adviser for Nebraska PBL, will serve as the chairman of the board in the 2014-15 year and then will have a term as past chair during 2015-16.

This report was supplied by PBL officials.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 7/24/2013
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