Roll Call

U.S. Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska says he has tested positive for COVID-19. Fortenberry says on his congressional website that he had a “moderate case” and will recuperate at home. He says he tested positive despite being vaccinated and taking precautions to avoid getting infected. Fortenberry is running for re-election while facing criminal allegations that he lied to federal authorities who were investigating an illegal contribution to his campaign. He has pleaded not guilty. On Sunday, Nebraska state Sen.

The Nebraska Arts Council’s new Creative Aging through the Arts Program (CAAP) funds artist-led workshops at senior centers, assisted living facilities, libraries, or nonprofit organizations serving older adults in Nebraska.  Over the course of eight workshops, participants will hone their artistic skills in music, creative writing, drama, dance, or artmaking while engaging with peers.  Programs end with a final performance, exhibit or reading, shared with the local community.

Anne Alston, Program Specialist at Nebraska Arts Council, joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to discuss the new program and how interested seniors and artists can get involved. 

More information can be found at

Jim Cavanaugh, who is the Douglas County Commissioner for District 2, spent some time on the ”Live & Local” program to discuss where some of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) funds have been allocated or spent and where the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) money may be directed. 

Douglas County received $55.4 million from the federal government in May of 2021.  They expect to receive the other $55.4 million in May of 2022. 

For more information about ARPA funds in Douglas County go to the website

Founded in 1981 and headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, Food Bank for the Heartland is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that distributes food to 600 food pantries, schools, emergency shelters and other nonprofit partners.  They are the largest food bank in Nebraska and Iowa, serving 93 counties in the two-state region. 

Brian Barks, President and CEO Foodbank for the Heartland, spent some time chatting with Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” about the 76,000 square-foot facility that allows them to process, store, then distribute an enormous amount of food to entities that, in turn, pass it along to waiting families.  In FY 2021, they provided 37,070,228 meals to our neighbors across the Heartland.  Brian also expressed that Foodbank for the Heartland is grateful to the individuals, organizations and companies that support our vision of eradicating hunger in our community by donating time, money and food. 

For more information or to donate go to  

Image of book cover titled "Patient Zero." The title is in red text inside a petri dish. The subtitle "A Curious History of the World's Worst Diseases" is above it in black text. Images of things like microscopes and syringes are on the edges of the cover
Workman Publishing Company

Lydia Kang practices internal medicine at Nebraska Medicine and is an author of young adult fiction, adult fiction and non-fiction, and poetry  Her latest book, co-written with Nate Pedersen, is called "Patient Zero: A Curious History of the World’s Worst Diseases," which chronicles how diseases spread, the scientific race to understand them and efforts to destroy them before they destroy us. Each chapter chronicles a particular disease or virus — such as smallpox, the Bubonic plague, polio, HIV and COVID-19.

Omaha Symphony’s Music Director and Maestro Ankush Bahl has a huge week ahead of him, filled with great friends and fantastic music! 

Recently on “Live & Local” with Mike Hogan, Bahl explained how on January 9th at Joslyn Art Museum’s Witherspoon Concert Hall he will celebrate American artists by conducting the program “Dvořák, Walker, & Schumann” which features works by American composers Michael Tilson Thomas and George Walker.

Then on Friday and Saturday, January 14-15 at 7:30 p.m. at the Holland Performing Arts Center, Bahl sandwiches his good friend and world renowned clarinetist Anthony McGill between  Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and Emmy Award-winning composer Adam Schoenberg’s Picture Studies inspired by Mussorgsky and works from the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.  Schoenberg is also a close friend of the Omaha Maestro and will be in town to witness this debut. 

The week promises to be filled with magnificent musical offerings, and the joy of reuniting with old friends for the Maestro.

More information on these shows and the rest of the season at Omaha Symphony can be found at or

The city of Omaha is planning to distribute 112-million-dollars in American Rescue Plan Act funds.   The United Way of the Midlands will distribute 10-million-dollars of the funding to non-profit organizations, while the Omaha Community Foundation will hand out five-million-dollars to non-profits.  Mayor Jean Stothert says the city has already received half of its expected American Rescue Plan Act funding.  Grant committees will decide how the money is distributed, applications will be accepted from February 15th through April 1st and funds will be awarded in June.

Lincoln Journal Star

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is extending its mask mandate as virus cases soar across the state, and all returning students and faculty will be required to take a COVID-19 test at the start of the spring semester. Masks will be required indoors throughout the university’s campuses, including at sporting events. Separately, Omaha police and fire officials announced Wednesday that they will require masks after a virus outbreak among their departments.

Every year, Max I. Walker customers donate dresses – prom, wedding, bridesmaid, cocktail and other formal gowns – at locations all across the Metro, and then Max I. Walker’s employees generously clean, press and store them.  Once ready, the dresses are sold at the Ultra Chic Boutique dress sale event.  From 2007 to 2017, the proceeds were donated to the Open Door Mission's Lydia House.

Starting in 2018, the Max I. Walker family began partnering with the Nebraska Alzheimer's Association for the Ultra Chic Boutique.  At the 2018, 2019 & 2020 events, they raised a total of nearly $60,000 for this worthy cause!

With the pandemic, there have been some logistical changes to this year’s February 5th event.  To promote safety and distancing as much as possible, they are changing the format this year.  Max I. Walker will require (no cost) reservations to be made online ahead of time and will do a timed entry of 25 shoppers per hour over the course of the day.

Steph Dorland and Casey Walker joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to discuss the changes and let everyone know how much they appreciate the donated dresses and the opportunity to get fantastic dresses to waiting people at a spectacular price in order to raise money for a great cause.

More information and a sign-up link can be found at


Nebraska football star and 1972 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers remains in an Omaha hospital intensive care unit with COVID-19 and other complications. Business partner Denny Drake told The Omaha World-Herald that Rodgers was hospitalized Thanksgiving morning. Drake says the 70-year-old Rodgers seemed to improve after a few days, but took a turn for the worse last week and was placed in the ICU. Drake says Rodgers has since improved and is feeling much better.

Nebraska health officials say the vast majority of the COVID-19 patients who are filling up the state’s hospitals are unvaccinated and many of them are younger adults. The number of people hospitalized in Nebraska with COVID-19 continues to climb and reached 555 on Tuesday, which was the highest it had been since last winter. Although the number of hospitalizations remains well below last fall’s peak of 987, hospital capacity is strained. That state said just 13% of the adult intensive care unit beds and 20% of the pediatric ICU beds were available Tuesday.

With a mission is to help nonprofits fulfill theirs, SHARE Omaha in full swing tomorrow for Giving Tuesday!  Providing free benefits to nonprofits in the Omaha and Council Bluffs areas, SHARE Omaha is looking forward to you participation in this enormous annual event.

Marjorie Maas, Executive Director of SHARE Omaha joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to discuss the importance of Giving Tuesday, the many benefits for nonprofits, and how everyone in the area can help change the landscape of giving.  As they say at SHARE Omaha, “Together, we can change the giving culture of the metro area.”

More information can be found at


Health officials have shut down a COVID-19 vaccination clinic north of downtown Omaha, citing repeated vandalism at the site of the drive-thru clinic. The Douglas County Health Department announced Friday that it's closing the clinic off Abbott Drive, just north of the CHI Health Center event facility. The department declined to give details about the vandalism, citing an ongoing criminal investigation into the matter. The health department says anyone who had an upcoming appointment at the site for a vaccine will be contacted by staff to reschedule elsewhere.

For over 100 years, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has been fighting hate.  Founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all.  ADL works to expose extremism, delivers anti-bias education and fights hate online.  ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

No Place for Hate is a free, self-directed program helping schools create spaces that are welcoming, inclusive, and respectful.  No Place for Hate aims to improve school climate with one unifying message, this school is “No Place for Hate!”

Halley Taylor, Education Director for ADL Plains States Region, and Susan Wallis, Assistant Education Director for ADL Plains States Region joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to explain the new program and invite everyone to participate in the Walk Against Hate: Journey of Allies from November 28th through December 5th.

More information can be found at

Outlook Enrichment empowers people living with vision loss with the skills and tools to achieve their goals.  There are a variety of ways they do this such as adaptive technology training that helps anyone who is blind or visually impaired learn how to use a computer, navigate a mobile device, try on digital eyewear and gain independence.  They also have recreational programs that boost confidence and increase physical activity and cultural experiences that enrich the lives of the visually impaired.

Paulette Monthei is the Executive Director of Outlook Enrichment.  She chatted with Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” about the programs and their annual fundraiser “Vision Beyond Sight 2021” which happens on Friday, November 19th at the Embassy Suites in La Vista.  The funds raised during this event will help Outlook Enrichment continue to positively impact the lives of those with impaired or lost vision.

More information can be found at

Event specific information can be found at

The Olympic Trials are here in Omaha again!  No, not swimming, in fact, you’d have to freeze the pool and grab some brooms to get these trials underway.  The curling trials have returned to Omaha and they begin today and run through November 21st at Baxter Arena. 

Nic Swiercek is a Director on the Board of Aksarben Curling, a local, volunteer-run nonprofit organization dedicated to growing the Olympic sport of curling in the region.  Nic joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to discuss this sport’s history in Omaha, the gold medal the U.S. team won last Olympics, and how the sport is a great activity for anyone.

More information about curling can be found at and tickets for the Olympic trials can be found at  


Nebraska recorded a second straight week of increased COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continued to creep up. That prompted the state to resume daily updates on the virus instead of providing only weekly numbers. The state reported 5,104 new virus cases last week to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That was up from 4,177 cases during the previous week. Before that, cases had been flat or slightly falling for several weeks. An average of 400 Nebraskans were hospitalized with COVID-19 during the past week, which was up from 386 the previous week.

Saving Grace Perishable Food Rescue provides a unique service in the Omaha area by operating the only perishable food rescue dedicated to feeding the hungry with nutritious excess food that would otherwise go to waste.  They do this by connecting healthy perishable food from local business with nonprofit agencies that use it to feed their clients.

Beth Ostdiek Smith is the CEO, President, and Founder of  Saving Grace Perishable Food Rescue.  She joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to introduce the listeners of KIOS-FM to the mission of Saving Grace and present an invitation for listeners to join the activities that save food to feed those in need.  

Last year Saving Grace and the Stephen Center collaborated on The Omaha Hunger Experience which was a wild success!  Don’t let this chance to take a night off from dinner with a gourmet take-and-bake meal for four slip away.  You set the table and we set the stage to help you have a conversation around the table about food and housing insecurity in our city.

Bring a frozen turkey or ham to donate to those in need this holiday season and receive an official Omaha Hunger Experience apron!  There are other ways to help as well, for example, a donation of $50 helps feed 250 people.

More information can be found at

Red graphic against white background with the silhouettes of houses and apartment buldings above text reading "Tenant Assistance Project." The first letter of each word is bolded.
Tenant Assistance Project

Attorneys Laurel Heer Dale and Michael Milone discuss the eviction crisis and how they're addressing it through the Tenant Assistance Project — also known as TAP — which offers free legal assistance to tenants facing eviction.

Nebraska Legislature

A leading Nebraska senator who helps create the state budget says he’s already getting requests for how to spend the state’s share of federal pandemic relief money, and he’s expecting a lot more. Sen. John Stinner, chairman of the Legislature’s Appropriations Committee, says he has spoken with groups including Nebraska’s child welfare and developmental disability service providers. Stinner, of Gering, says the providers are under competitive pressure to keep workers because they aren’t able to pay as much as other employers.

Nationwide Children's Hospital

Health officials in Nebraska say they’re expecting 64,200 initial doses of the coronavirus vaccine for children ages 5 to 11. The allocation is enough to cover nearly 35% of the 186,200 Nebraska children who fall in that age range. Don Herrington, the acting director of the state Department of Health Services, recommends that parents have their children vaccinated against COVID-19. He says pediatric vaccinations will be available in some areas at special vaccination clinics arranged with schools and local health care providers.

The Douglas County Historical Society is based out of the General Crook House (a restored Victorian-era officer’s mansion on the historic Fort Omaha Metro Community College campus).  They curate an annual exhibit, and this year’s is titled Rooted in Diversity: Douglas County Ethnic Heritage.  It’s an examination and celebration of the various ethnic groups who have shaped Douglas County and continue to define it today.  For the holiday season this year, they are transforming the entire house into a parallel exhibit on holiday traditions around the world.

Natalie Kammerer, a Research Specialist at DCHS, spoke with Mike Hogan at KIOS-FM about how several members of the community who helped with researching the primary exhibit have been invited to come in and decorate a room according to their family’s native traditions.  For instance, they’ll have rooms decorated according to the following traditions: Italian Christmas, German Christmas, Mexican and Central American Christmas, Chinese New Year, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and much more.

The decorated house will be open to the public from November 7, 2021-January 14, 2022 (the Chinese New Year room will stay up until the end of that festival in February).  During these weeks, they will also provide a full weekend schedule of educational and entertaining cultural events as well as a Passport Program, prizes, and more.  The full schedule can be found on their website at

About 1,200 tech jobs are open in Omaha today, highlighting why a shortage of tech workers is one of the biggest challenges facing employers.  Nearly every job today requires some level of technical skill.  Those skills can be acquired at the AIM Institute, and for some people, at low to no cost. 

The AIM Institute, a nonprofit that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion through outstanding tech education and training programs, will celebrate the leaders, educators, students and organizations who are working hard to build a stronger tech community in the Silicon Prairie at its annual AIM Tech Awards on Nov. 11 at the Omaha Design Center.

Tony Veland, Business Development Director with AIM Institute, (also two-time National Champion Husker football player and Super Bowl winner) talks about the mission of the organization, its dedication to improving the ability of Nebraskans to take advantage of all the open opportunities, and why he continues to receive joy helping people achieve their best life possible.

More information about AIM and the Tech Awards event can be found at

The Ollie Webb Center, Inc. ( is named to honor the memory of Ms. Ollie Webb.  Ollie Webb was a woman with a national reputation as a spokesperson for self-advocacy.  She was a former resident of the Beatrice State Home, a homeowner, a landlady, and a retiree from a career in food services at the Omaha Field Club.  She was a founding member of Project II, a social, continuing education and self-advocacy program for adults with developmental disabilities.  The Ollie Webb Center, Inc’s name honors a life well-lived in spite of unique challenges and reminds us that people should be known by their names and accomplishments, not by their disabilities.

There are many programs doing great work with people throughout the area and one of them is The Ollie Webb Center, Inc.’s Art of Imagination which has a mission to empower, develop and encourage self-expression in adults with disabilities through professional opportunities in the visual and performing arts.  Carrie Nath is the Managing Director of The Art of Imagination and she joined Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to talk about the first production the students have been able to mount in well over a year, due to pandemic restrictions.  It opens tomorrow (November 5th) and runs through the weekend. 

She also brought with her special guest actor Jordon McCoy to talk about his role in the production of “Dionysia: Three Greek Myths.”  Featuring a diverse cast and crew of people with and without disabilities, the show is playing in the Scottish Rite Omaha Theater at 202 South 20th Street.  An evening of theatre one will not soon forget.

For more information about the production or how to attend, one can go to the website

Facemask Ordinance In Lincoln Will Last Through November

Oct 27, 2021

A public facemask requirement will remain in effect in Lincoln for another month.  City officials announced yesterday that a Directed Health Measure, which includes the mask requirement, has been extended through November 24th.  The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department says the Directed Health Measure will remain in place as the community focuses on decreasing local COVID-19 case numbers.

There are many men and women who bravely and faithfully served this country.  And they need our help.  Homelessness among military veterans is nearly an epidemic. 

Now through Thursday, November 4th, you can donate much-needed items to fill backpacks for homeless military veterans who are staying temporarily at the Siena/Francis House.

Items can be dropped off at Bellevue University’s Military Veteran Services Center at 2108 Harvell Drive in Bellevue, Nebraska.  The backpacks will be presented to the Siena Francis House staff and residents on Thursday, Nov. 11, at the Siena/Francis House’s annual Veterans Day celebration.

Heather Carroll, Manager of the Military Veteran Services Center at Bellevue University, is heading up this project and she joined Mike Hogan to discuss the critical needs of homeless veterans.  In fact, locally, several hundred military veterans seek shelter at the Siena/ Francis House each year; while nationally, about 20 percent of all homeless persons are veterans.  You can help. 

link to more information is below as well as a list of items needed to fill the backpacks of our veterans.

Items For Men's Backpacks 

  • Blanket/Poncho – order this item online at Amazon and have it delivered directly to the MVSC.
  • Winter hats, Heavy winter gloves multiple sizing, Neck scarves
  • Shampoo and Conditioner, Deodorant, Shaving Cream, Razors, Lip Balm
  • Large Toe Nail Clippers, Nail clippers
  • Hand and Feet Warmers
  • Hand and body lotion
  • Reusable Water Bottle
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Masks

Items for Women's Backpacks 

  • Winter hats 
  • Winter gloves 
  • Winter socks 
  • Feminine products
  • Leggings multiple sizing please

The following link can be used to purchase items wholesale:

All cash donations will go toward purchasing snacks and hand and foot warmers and any other specialty items identified.

Guest conductor Maestra JoAnn Falletta takes the helm of the Omaha Symphony for a Respighi double feature!  This Multiple Grammy Award winning conductor has been named one of the 50 Best Conductor’s by Gramophone Magazine, and makes her return to the Omaha Symphony on Friday and Saturday this week (29th and 30th).

JoAnn took a little time out of her extremely busy day to chat with Mike Hogan on KIOS-FM’s “Live & Local” about her favorite music during off hours, an instrument she enjoyed playing in college, her approach to conducting throughout the world, and why she selected these pieces of music to conduct.

More information about the concert can be found at

The Women’s Fund of Omaha addresses gender-based inequities in our community through collaboration that identifies, researches and creates solutions to advance, educate and fund lasting impact.  There are four pillars of action - Economic Security, Freedom from Violence, Sexual Literacy (In Douglas County, rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among young people ages 15 to 24 are notably higher than they are in the state of Nebraska—or even nationwide!), and Women in Leadership.

Jo Giles is the Executive Director of The Women’s Fund.  She spent some time talking to Mike Hogan about the mission of the organization, as well as an upcoming fundraiser.

The Women’s Fund is preparing to welcome activist, author and founder of the ‘me too.’ movement Tarana Burke to Omaha for their Lead the Change annual celebration October 28.  

Limited in-person seating at CHI Health Center (455 N. 10th Street, Omaha) and virtual options available.  During the Lead the Change annual celebration, they will also celebrate their recent 30th anniversary and recognize local nonprofits with grants to support programs that make a positive impact on the lives of women and girls.  More information can be found at

The first Pops concert of the Omaha Symphony’s season is this weekend, Saturday (23rd) and Sunday (24th) at the Holland Center.  Maestro Ernest Richardson is conducting the show which is called “The Streisand Songbook” with Ann Hampton Callaway.  It is a celebration of the music of the great Barbara Streisand.

Ann Hampton Callaway is a platinum award-winning singer-songwriter.  During her interview with Mike Hogan on KIOS’s “Live & Local” we find out that Ann has written songs for Barbara, how to pronounce “Streisand,” and many other details about the career of this Tony Award nominated singer.

More information about the show can be found at

Attendance is critical for student success.  Across Omaha Public Schools, families are encouraged to #StriveFor95, which means attending school on time at least 95% of school days.

Winter weather is on the way, so the Omaha Public Schools Foundation is working to ensure every child has the hats, gloves, and scarves they may need to come to school on time every day.  The project is called “20,000 Villagers” to honor the many community members who support OPS students.

Executive Director of the Omaha Public Schools Foundation/Kids Club, Toba Cohen-Dunning, spent some time with Mike Hogan on “Live & Local” to explain the program and the mission of the Omaha Public Schools Foundation.  She explained that a $20 donation can purchase hats, gloves, and scarves for four students who may need them.

Donations will be accepted through October 31st, when staff will order the winter gear to distribute in November. 

If one would like to contribute, the website is  

Or, checks may be mailed to the OPSF offices with a note for “20,000 Villagers” in the memo.

Mail to:

Omaha Public Schools Foundation

3861 Farnam St.

Omaha, NE 68131

Attention: 20,000 Villagers Campaign