Orderly Succession for State Bar 11/14/12 11/14/12 12:37:35 AM
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At the final luncheon of the State Bar Annual Meeting on Friday, Oct. 26, incoming and outgoing leaders bring the meeting to a conclusion. From left, new President Marsha Fangmeyer, Past President Warren Whitted, Jr., Past Chair of the House of Delegates James Gordon, and new Chair Steven Mattoon celebrate their first – and last – official acts.
By Lorraine Boyd
The Nebraska State Bar Elections
Assure Orderly Succession of Officers
The Daily Record
The Nebraska State Bar Association leaves little to chance. They have established a plan of succession that allows for highly-prepared members to assume their offices. Not only do they retain the immediate past president for a year after his or her presidency, they have a new president with a president-elect and a president-elect designate waiting in the wings.
The same succession holds true for the NSBA House of Delegates.
In October, Marsha E. Fangmeyer of Kearney became the president of the NSBA and Steven F. Mattoon of Sidney became the chair of the Association’s House of Delegates. Both were elected to these positions at the association’s 112th Annual Meeting.
The immediate past president of the Nebraska State Bar is Warren R. Whitted, Jr. of Omaha.
Fangmeyer will be the subject of an in-depth interview in an upcoming issue of The Daily Record.
Steven Mattoon earned his J.D. from the University of Nebraska College of Law in 1976. After law school, he joined the law firm of Martin, Mattoon and Matzke, in Sidney, focusing on oil and gas law. Mattoon is a third-generation attorney who practiced with his father, Frank J. Mattoon, and whose grandfather, Harold F. Mattoon, was a member of the Judge Advocate Corps under General McArthur and a Gage County Judge.
Mattoon has served on both the House of Delegates and Executive Council of the Nebraska State Bar Association. He is a previous trustee of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation and a member of the Legislative, Judicial Resources and Leadership Academy committees. He is also active in the Sidney Board of Education, Chapter Advisor of the Fort Sidney Chapter of DeMolay, board member of the Cheyenne County Community Center and Past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Masons of Nebraska.
He is also past president of the Sidney Rotary Club, board member of the TeamMates Mentoring Program and previous Elder of the Light Memorial Presbyterian Church.
He and his wife Cathy have two daughters. Kendra Ringenberg is a partner with Koley Jessen in Omaha, specializing in commercial real estate, and Stephanie Mattoon is a partner at Baird Holm in Omaha and specializes in corporate law.
Mattoon succeeds outgoing House of Delegates Chair James Gordon of Lincoln.
At the end of the annual meeting, attorney G. Michael Fenner of Omaha became NSBA president-elect. Joel M. Carney of Omaha became chair-elect of the House of Delegates and will succeed Steven F. Mattoon next year.
G. Michael Fenner received his Bachelors degree from Kansas University in 1965; and his Juris Doctor degree, with distinction, from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 1969. From 1969-1972 he was a trial attorney in the Honors Law Graduate Program with the United States Department of Justice. In 1970, he received the U.S. Department of Justice Special Achievement Award. He joined the Creighton Law faculty in 1972.
He is a member of the Nebraska Supreme Court Committee on Practice and Procedure and the House of Delegates of the Nebraska Bar Association, and past chairperson of the Evidence section of the Association of American Law Schools.
Prof. Fenner received the Nebraska State Bar Foundation’s 1992 Shining Light award. He is a frequent speaker at continuing education programs for lawyers, judges, and their support staffs. He is the author of The Hearsay Rule (Carolina Academic Press 2d ed., 2009). In addition to the Creighton Law Review, he has written articles for the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, Notre Dame Law Review, Nebraska Law Review, Washington University Law Quarterly, University of Missouri- Kansas City Law Review, and Trial.
He has also published a number of pieces of “editorial whimsy” in a variety of popular papers and magazines. As Reporter for the Nebraska Supreme Court Committee on Practice and Procedure, Fenner has primary responsibility for Nebraska’s pattern jury instructions for civil trials, NJI2d Civ., which is updated and republished each year.
Professor Fenner is Of Counsel with the Omaha firm of McGill, Gotsdiner, Workman & Lepp.
He and his wife Anne have two grown children and four grandchildren. Their daughter, Hilary is general counsel at Patagonia, and their son Ben, practices Native American law in Washington, D.C.
Regarding his election, Prof. Fenner said, “I am thrilled by the honor bestowed and the trust shown by the Nebraska attorneys who have elected me president-elect of our State Bar Association. I have dedicated my career to helping men and women from all kinds of backgrounds and experiences to be the best lawyers they can be – and, I hope, the best human beings as well. It is my desire to contribute in that same way as an officer of the Bar.”
Joel Carney joined the Omaha firm of Walentine, O’Toole, McQuillan and Gordon, LLP as an associate in 2000 and became a partner in January 2006.
He was raised in Scottsbluff and attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History in 1995. While at UNL, Carney was affiliated with the Delta Tau Delta Fraternity. He attended Creighton University School of Law, graduating in May 2000.
He is a second-generation attorney whose father, James M. Carney, was a partner in the Scottsbluff office of the Simmons Olsen Law Firm until his recent retirement. His maternal grandmother, the late Margaret Carney, was the Clerk Magistrate for Kearney County, Neb., for many years. His pro bono activities include the “One Child One Lawyer Adoption Project,” “Choose Law,” and the “Volunteer Lawyer Project.”
As an active member of the legal community, Carney’s professional associations include memberships in the Nebraska and Omaha Bar Associations, and the House of Delegates and he also served as the District Representative for Iowa and Nebraska (2008-2010) for the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division.
He is also a member of the National Association of Subrogation Professionals. From 2009-present, Carney has been active in the American Bar Association for General Practice/Solo Practitioner Division. He and his wife Shaini McClure Carney have three children.
The NSBA president-elect designate is Amie C. Martinez of Anderson Creager & Wittstruck, P.C., in Lincoln.
House of Delegates chair-elect designate is Timothy R. Engler of Harding & Shultz, P.C., L.L.O. in Lincoln.
Falls City attorney Michael R. Dunn is the Fifth Supreme Court District Representative to the Nebraska State Bar Association Executive Council, assuming the seat of Robert M. Schafer of Beatrice.
Dunn is a member of Halbert, Dunn & Halbert, L.L.C. with offices in Falls City and Hiawatha, Kan. His areas of practice include real estate, estate and trust planning, civil litigation and business planning.
Dunn is a director of the Falls City Education Foundation and John Philip Falter Memorial Park, Inc. He is a member and past president of Falls City Lions Club and a member of Falls City Elks and has held various leadership positions at First United Methodist Church.
Dunn is currently a member of the House of Delegates, a position that he has held since 1999. He is also currently on NSBA’s Legislation Committee and has previously served on the House Rules Committee, the Budget and Planning Committee and the Real Estate Title Standards Committee.
Dunn is past chairman of the Bar Association’s General Practice Section and a Fellow in the Nebraska Bar Foundation. He graduated from Kearney State College, cum laude, in 1979 and from the University of Nebraska, College of Law, with distinction, in 1982. He was a member of the Nebraska Law Review and Order of the Coif.
Dunn and his wife, Tami, have four adult children and three grandchildren.
North Platte attorney Michael J. McCarthy became the sixth Supreme Court District Representative to the Nebraska State Bar Association Executive Council at the close of the association’s 112th Annual Meeting. McCarthy assumes the seat from R. Kevin O’Donnell of Ogallala.
McCarthy is the senior partner in the North Platte firm of McCarthy and Moore. He focuses his practice in the areas of estate planning, probate and small business representation. He has spoken at various conferences and seminars over the years on estate planning and probate topics.
He graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1972 and earned his J.D. from the UNL College of Law in 1975. He is licensed to practice in Nebraska. He is past president and current member of the Lincoln County and Western Nebraska Bar Associations, a member of the Nebraska State Bar Association, and has served as Chairman of the Nebraska Commission on Unauthorized Practice of Law since its creation by the Supreme Court in January of 2008.