2016 Alumni and Service Awards
Outstanding Alumni Awards: Fred Bruning and Dr. William TomekFred Bruning is a graduate of UNL with degrees in agricultural economics and animal science. He is president of Bruning State Bank and was instrumental in developing the Agricultural Banking and Finance program in the department. The program is joint effort with the Nebraska Bankers Association and provides scholarships and internships for students majoring in agricultural banking and finance in the department. Bruning is also a major contributor to the Ronald J. Hanson Endowed Chair in Agricultural Banking and Finance and serves as a member of the advisory board for the department. He is committed to supporting and strengthening Nebraska communities through education, agriculture promotion and volunteer activities.
William Tomek earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from UNL. He was a faculty member at Cornell for 40 years and served as president of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. Dr. Tomek also received two awards from the AAEA for publications of enduring quality. He established the William G. Tomek Agricultural Economics Excellence Fund which benefits student activities in the department.
Department of Agricultural Economics Outstanding Service Award: Leone Spencer HarlanLee and her husband the late Neal E. Harlan, took an active interest in supporting agriculture and law programs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Their contributions include: the Neal and Leone Harlan Vice - Chancellorship in the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Scholarship Program, the fund for the renovation of Agricultural Hall on the UNL East Campus, the Omtvedt Innovation Award Program in the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the Neal Harlan Professorship of Agribusiness, the Neal and Leone Harlan Auditorium in the headquarters building at the University's Agricultural Research and Development Center at Ithaca, Nebraska, the LEAD Program, the Lied Center for the Performing Arts, and the Judge Harry A. Spencer Professorship in Law which honors Lee’s father, a Nebraska Supreme Court Justice.
The Agribusiness Freshman Scholarship in the Department of Agricultural Economics was established eight years ago by Lee. Each year the program recognizes outstanding over 20 first-year students who plan to pursue a career in agribusiness or return home to their family farm or ranch. Lee has given over $300,000 in scholarships to 144 students in 8 years.