As a youngster, John Buckley grew up a few blocks from the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Dodge Street campus. He lived along Happy Hollow Boulevard, a path taken by scores of college students and professors to and from campus.
Since that time, UNO has seen a dramatic transformation, adding impressive buildings and programs and dorms. Enrollment grew and so did its academic reputation.
And as that campus grew and flourished, so did Buckley.
Buckley’s career history and performance as a UNO professor caught the eye of the UNO College of Business Administration – Department of Management, which gave Buckley its 2018 Alumni Award of Excellence.
“It’s hard to put into words,” said Buckley of receiving the award. “In the classroom, I try to translate what is in the book into a real job. It’s not all theory – people practice it and build careers around it.”
Buckley has taught Operations Management for the CBA Management Department every semester since 2009. The award ceremony program stated: “His performance in the classroom matches his professional dedication and he receives solid reviews. His Monday evening classes are filled to capacity each semester.”
Buckley received a bachelor’s degree in geological engineering from the New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology, and an Executive MBA from UNO in 2008.
For a time, he worked as a partner and geological engineer for firms in Washington, D.C., and Kansas City, Mo., before joining Omaha Public Power District in 1998.
“My career path has been led by my desire to improve processes to make things better, be it environmental quality, more efficient internal processes, or effective delivery of services and information to our customers,” Buckley said.
At OPPD, he serves as director of Integrated Work Management. His work includes project management, transmission and distribution work planning, resource scheduling, vegetation management, cable locating, contract management and administrative services.
“I’m responsible for the management and successful implementation of plans and initiatives in alignment with Energy Delivery strategy,” said Buckley. OPPD serves an estimated population of 833,000 over a 5,000 square miles in southeast Nebraska.
“Our team is behind the scenes making sure we get work done to keep the lights on, be it tree trimming; 811 facility locates; contractor management; scheduling meter techs, troubleshooters, streetlights and collections; project management for large projects like Facebook; or planning and scheduling work at the service centers.”
Buckley also is a certified Lean facilitator, director of Nebraska One-Call, and is a Nebraska-licensed professional geologist.
Buckley and his wife, Kim, have two sons, Stewart and Jack. Both of his sons received architectural engineering degrees from UNO.