News Release

May 7, 2018


SkillsUSA Nebraska, a Nebraska Department of Education career and technical student organization, recently recognized award winners and elected new state officers during its 2018 State Leadership and Skills Conference in Grand Island. Because of the success of the conference, the SkillsUSA Nebraska Board of Directors approved to extend their contract with Heartland Events Center and Fonner Park through 2027.

More than 2,300 people attended the conference, including over 1,700 high school and college students and advisors. Students participated in over 140 hands–on skill and leadership contests. The contests were developed and directed with the help of Nebraska industry, trade associations, and labor organizations, and tested competencies set by national industry standards. First-place winners from Nebraska competitions qualify for the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Championships Conference held June 19-23, in Louisville, Kentucky.


The SkillsUSA Nebraska State Officers for 2018-19 are:

Clayton Riley, Waverly High School

Cordell Vrbka, Seward High School

Evan Riley, Waverly High School

Jarod Harris, Seward High School

Tanner Sasse, Benson High School, Omaha

Max Yarnell, Louisville High School

Gracie Davis, Papillion–La Vista South High School

Joshua Fowler, Metropolitan Community College, Omaha

Chandler Cannon, Metropolitan Community College, Omaha


Outstanding High School Advisor of the Year:

Larry Klaus of Bennington High School


Outstanding College/Technical Advisor of the Year:

Ken Jefferson of Southeast Community College, Lincoln


Jake Duncan Leadership Award Recipient:

Ryan Campbell of Louisville High School


$500 SkillsUSA Nebraska Scholarship High School Recipient:

Alexa Brenn of Arlington High School


$500 SkillsUSA Nebraska Scholarship College Recipient:

Tanner Knight of Northeast Community College


SkillsUSA Week Winners:

1st Place: Seward High School

2nd Place: Bennington High School

3rd Place: Sterling High School


Incoming SkillsUSA Nebraska Board of Directors are:

Aaron Jones of Waverly High School

Paul Cross of Westside High School, Omaha

Zach Pechacek of Metropolitan Community College, Omaha


A complete list of competition winners can be found in the SkillsUSA News Release.

David Jespersen
Public Information Officer, Nebraska Department of Education