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History

 

1968   Twenty-seven acres, a swimming pool and a roller skating rink, which was built about 1928, were purchased for the leadership training of the FFA and named The Nebraska Youth Leadership Development Center. Articles of Incorporation were signed by Irv Wedeking, Dr. Ted Ward and Norval McCaslin.


1971    First FFA camp held. Slept in Army tents.


1972   Two cabins were roughed in. Money was provided by Rural Rehabilitation Funds and administered by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture.


1973    The third cabin was built and bunk beds were bought with help from Ak-Sar-Ben.


1974    The Board hired Cliff Jensen as the full-time executive director.


1975    The roller skating rink, known as “Old White”, was remodeled. It was used as classrooms, auditorium and canteen.


1977    The house for the resident executive director was completed.


1978    A new swimming pool was completed with funds from the Rural Rehabilitation Funds, which were administered by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture.


1979    Mather Dining Hall was built with one-half of the funds from the Myrl and Bessie Mather Foundation. Dedication was held October 21.


1980    The night of the Grand Island tornadoes, we received seven and one-half inches of rain. Two of the basement walls washed in on “Old White”. It was condemned by the Fire Marshall and dismantled.The Wedeking Room was completed and dedicated August 5.


1982    Nebraska Hall was built to replace “Old White”. This consists of five classrooms and a large auditorium which serves as a recreational area as well. This was built with funds from many individuals, the Nebraska Bankers Association and a low developed with the N.R.D providing the engineering and overseeing of the project. The pond was stocked with fish in August.


1990    With the help of a grant from the Frank and Alice Farr Foundation, the driveway, parking lot and service roads were paved with asphalt. Nebraska Hall was renamed in honor of Dr. Allen Blezek and dedicated October 7.


1991    Our name was changed to “The Leadership Center”.


1994    Ak-Sar-Ben Lakeside, additional meeting room space with a capacity of 400 people, along the west side of Ak-Sar-Ben Square was completed. Dedicated April 19.


1995    42 X 60 Morton Building put up for equipment. The conference room was remodeled into the board room.


1995    The conference room was remodeled into the board room.


1997    The board room was dedicated in honor of Cliff Jensen on October 5.


2003    Mather Hall expansion and remodeling.


2004    Ted Ward Lodge a thirty-two room motel was built.


2009    The board hired Maile Ilac Boeder as The Leadership Center's 3rd Executive Director .


2009    Nebraska FFA Alumni Association raises funds with their “Raise the Roof” drive and re-roofed all three cabins.


2010    Through the Picnic Table Drive, over 50 Nebraska FFA Chapters donated and collaborated to purchase, assemble, stain and deliver 41 picnic tables for guests to enjoy.


2011    As a part of Project Paddle Boat, 25 Nebraska FFA Chapters donate funds to purchase 2 new paddle boats for guests to use.


2012    NVAF Board leases 3 acres of land to the Aurora Cooperative to build their corporate headquarters on.


2013    Kiewit Lodge & Wedeking were remodeled including new paint and updated heating/cooling units. The cabin area was designated the Nebraska FFA Alumni Cabin Row.

2014    The Aurora Cooperative Headquarters were completed and open to public.

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The Leadership Center     2211 Q St (E Hwy 34), Aurora, Nebraska      P: 402.694.3934      F:402.694-6116