A celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Lancaster County Public Defender's Office was held at the Cornhusker Hotel in Lincoln on Friday evening, April 12, 1996. Approximately 200 people attended the celebration, sponsored by the Public Defender staff, which included a brief program describing the establishment and the early years of the office.
Speeches & Events
Chief Justice White of the Nebraska Supreme Court made brief introductory comments highlighting the crucial role that the right to counsel pays in fundamentally fair criminal proceedings. Tom Davies of Lincoln presented a brief historical background regarding the Lincoln Bar Association study in late 1970 which led to the establishment of the Lancaster County Public Defender's Office. Davies was President of the Lincoln Bar Association at that time.
Former District Court Judge Samuel Van Pelt read excerpts from Lancaster County Board resolutions and minutes referencing the establishment of the Lancaster County Public Defender's Office. He then played a video tape of comments by the late T. Clement Gaughan, Lancaster County's first public defender.
The evening's festivities concluded with a dance with music provided by the Fabtones.