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Class of 1970 - Inducted in 2014
Gary was inducted into the SHSAA Hall of Fame in 2014.
Gary Kastrick of Omaha is a SHS retired Social Studies teacher, Director of Project Omaha and Creighton University Methods Instructor. He has a B.S. degree in Political Science and a M.A. in Economics. He received the following awards: Alice Buffett Outstanding Teacher, College of Saint Mary Outstanding Teacher and Social Studies Achievement. He was honored by Optimist Club for his success in coaching Academic Decathlon students. Gary was awarded an Economic Fellowship and was a member of the Nebraska Historic Institute’s initial class. He served as an IBM Corp. spokesperson, a Nebraska Educational Television “NET” presenter, a radio show host on KIOS and a Magnet School Conference presenter.
He was a member of the 21st Century OPS Steering Committee. He was featured in the NET film “The Beef State.” He and a fellow teacher applied for and received a grant allowing them to develop Project OMAHA. With this grant they created the first, and only, local history museum in a school in the nation. The students used technology to study local history, record oral history of South Omahans, and create original products for third grade OPS students in this regard. Because of the success of this initiative, Apple Corp. selected it as one the top 10 projects in the nation and awarded $30,000 in technical support.
Gary is an expert regarding the history of South Omaha and is a popular speaker and tour guide. He volunteers his skills for the Durham Museum, Metropolitan Community College, Midlands Latino Community Development Corporation, nursing homes, educational institutions, businesses and community associations. For his efforts, he received UNO’s Community Service award, Omaha educational Association’s Human Relations award and was named South Omaha Volunteer of the Year. He also received the Nebraska Historical Society’s James Olson award for promoting Nebraska’s history. He credits SHS teachers for his work ethic, integrity and sense of community.
He was glad to teach at SHS for 28 years and for his part in continuing its distinguished heritage.