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The holidays always get us so sentimental. This year we’re thinking about relationships.

One in particular that’s been going 28 years. It’s had its ups and downs, fighting and making up, but neither has stopped being there for the other.

I’m talking about Omaha and The Reader.

On this New Years Eve…eve, we wanted to go back through some of our favorite stories through the years. Stories that you made possible by picking up a copy or sharing online to your friends and family. As we think of the next 28 years, we want to ask you to become a member to assure this type of journalism doesn’t disappear from Omaha.

Drama Queen

A community college president played mind games for power and cost taxpayers money. The Reader broke the story in 2007.

Polling Place Changes Hit Older Omaha Harder

In 2012, Douglas County Election Commission did away with polling places that disproportionately affected the poor and people of color. Due to Reader reporting, many of those polling places were restored.

The Dennison Machine

The Reader told the story of Omaha’s crime boss who ran this city for decades, back when the topic was taboo in 1998.

The Badge and the Bishop

A police officer on public access television used a razor blade to threaten a minister whose three homes and fleet of luxury cars had many wondering whether he was really committed to the community. The Reader got the story in 2004.


In 2007, The Reader revisited the shaky case built against David Rice and Edward Poindexter, Black Panthers convicted of killing an Omaha police officer.

Get The Lead Out

A lead plant near downtown put Omahans in danger and officials knew it. In 1994, The Reader went digging for the truth and found a “skeleton from the closet.” 

Some of our favorite stories from the past two years:

Caught in a Culture War, Nebraska Trans Kids Fight for Acceptance

Transgender kids have become a political football, but experts say we’re missing the most important point: They’re still just kids. In this story, The Reader sought out personal stories to illustrate an experience that’s often talked about but rarely understood.

The Birds, Bees And Everything between: Nebraska Goes to War over Sex Education

As the Nebraska Board of Education sought to put out suggested standards for sex education, the state erupted into chaos. What our investigation found was that the decision to scrap the standards had little to do with experts and science, but everything to do with political pressure. 

‘It’s Evil. It’s Ruthless.” Five Months after Omaha Police Shooting, Questions Remain.

An Omaha police officer shot and killed Kenneth Jones during a traffic stop in November of 2020. But that was just the beginning of a confusing, hurtful journey for his family who were denied answers from government officials at every corner.

The Fight to Change Social Studies in Nebraska

The Reader wanted to know what social studies looked like in 2020. Were we teaching kids an accurate or white-washed version of history? We didn’t realize the story would be so complex or that we’d get shut down by every school district we contacted and that our best sources would be students themselves. And we certainly didn’t know how much of a firebrand critical race theory would become. But we still chased the story and the information is just as applicable nearly a year later.

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