Bill Orester


I was born in Rock Springs, Wyoming, and attended public schools in that community until sustaining a blinding injury in a playground accident at the age of eleven years. I attended the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind, Ogden, Utah, and the Oregon School for the Blind, Salem, Oregon, before enrolling at, and graduating from the Nebraska School for the Blind; subsequently renamed The Nebraska School for the Visually Handicapped, now known as the Nebraska Center for the Education of Children Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired. I next attended and graduated from The Creighton University College of Arts & Sciences with a major in History and minors in Political Science and Philosophy, and The Creighton University School of Law with a Juris Doctor Degree.

Following my admission to both the Nebraska and Federal Bars, and after a short sojourn in the world of private practice consisting, for the most part, of legal work for an Omaha Hospital, I applied for and secured an appointment as Assistant Attorney General of the State of Nebraska, and was assigned to the Department of Roads. During the next 38 years, I provided legal services to the Department of Roads, State Patrol, State Claims Board and various other agencies, specializing in the areas of Workers' Compensation, Automobile Negligence, and Claims by and against the State, etc.

I was heavily involved in career development and family matters during the early years of the American Council of the Blind (ACB); therefore, although I was extremely interested in the origin and growth of the organization, I did not participate directly in its advocacy programs for and on behalf of the blind and visually impaired. I became a member of the ACB approximately twenty years ago when it became apparent that it had developed into a strong and positives grass-roots organization consisting of approximately seventy state and special interest affiliates dedicated to promoting and advocating for the social and economic independence and welfare of all blind and visually impaired people.

I am a life member of both the American Council of the Blind and Guide Dog Users Inc. (GDUI), and a member of the American Blind Lawyers Association (ABLA). I have served four terms as President of the ACB of Nebraska, five terms as President of its Lincoln Chapter and one term as President of Guide Dog Users of Nebraska. I HAVE, ALSO, SERVED AS DIRECTOR, SECOND VICE-PRESIDENT AND FIRST VICE-PRESIDENT OF guide Dog Users Inc., but declined nomination as president because of the press of other matters. I am presently serving my second term on the Nebraska Statewide independent Living Council (SILC), and have served two terms as its chairman. In addition to my advocacy activities, I am a member of the Bethany Lions Club and recently completed a term as its president.

My wife, Mary Sue, is a graduate of the West Virginia School for the Blind, and is currently employed by the Nebraska Department of Revenue. We have two daughters, Barbara, a member of the State Bar, and Gloria, a Media Buyer for a local advertising agency.

I am honored to have been appointed to serve on the Board of Commissioners of the Nebraska Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired as the representative of the American Council of the Blind of Nebraska. I am pleased to have received appointment for a second term in order to continue my work with the other members of the Board to develop policies, which will enable the Executive director, supervisors, counselors, teachers and other employees of the Commission to serve the needs and occupational desires of all qualified blind and visually impaired residents of the state.


Bill Orester